North of the country of Panama and south of Nicaragua, lies tropical Costa Rica, a country of amazing beauty and a rather notable and peaceful history in comparison to its non-democratic neighbors.
Before making plans to visit, know that entry requirements may vary depending on your country of origin. You will not need a vaccination for diseases like malaria before visiting the country, but other things like passports and visas will be needed from some travelers. Others will only need a passport such as those coming from the U.S., the UK, and Canada.
The maximum stay allowed is 90 consecutive days, however, extensions can be added with the help of immigration or a travel agency.
Sightseeing in Costa Rica
From hot air ballooning to white water rafting, and just about every exciting activity you could ever think of in between, Costa Rica has something to offer everyone. For starters, the country is home to incredible variety of rainforests as well as hundreds of breathtaking waterfalls, lagoons, winding rivers, and mangrove swamps.
There are 112 volcanic craters in Costa Rica with seven active volcanoes as well as coral reefs to explore and an unbelievable number of different species of animals, birds, and insects. Some of the wildlife you can expect to see in Costa Rica include 208 species of mammals, 220 species of reptiles, 160 species of amphibians, 850 species of birds, and 1,000 species of butterflies.
It also boasts 9,000 species of plants including more than a thousand different types of gorgeous orchids.
Golfing in Costa Rica
Costa Rica is a golfer’s paradise as the tropical country is well on its way to becoming a popular place to hit the links. Some of the best courses you’ll find includes those at the Melia Conchal Golf Club at the Melia Playa Conchal Beach and Golf Resort which offers stunning vistas, rolling greens, and plenty of sparkling waters nearby.
Near San Jose and the Juan Santamaria International Airport is Parque Valle del Sol, a course with quite an interesting layout peppered with lagoons and other hazards for golfers to navigate. Yet another fun but challenging course is at the Rancho las Colinas Golf and Country Club, and be sure to visit Cariari Country Club in San Jose, a championship golf course that has hosted events from the PGA (Professional Golfer’s Association of America).
Surfing in Costa Rica
The country boasts some of the best surfing spots in all of the Pacific Ocean, but most especially near the northern and southern borders and off of the country’s central beaches. To the south of Jaco is Playa Hermosa, the place to go if you are on the lookout for a few big swells, but if nothing exciting is happening here, just a short drive in either direction will bring about a collection of impressive waves.
While the Atlantic Ocean side has suffered some damage thanks to strong storms and flooding in the area, Salsa Brava at Puerto Viejo boasts a legendary break during January and February in particular.
Some other activities you may be interested while visiting Costa Rica include snorkeling and scuba diving, kayaking, biking, hiking, backpacking, bird watching, fishing, and swimming.