A Costa Rica holiday offers some of the best opportunities to combine wildlife viewing with relaxation and adventure activities. Costa Rica is just a small country, about a fifth the size of the UK but it is jam packed full of perfect holiday locations.
Around 25% of the country is given over to national parks and reserves making it a great destination for nature lovers. The famous national parks like Tortuguero, Manuel Antonio, Monteverde, Gandoca-Manzamillo and Corcovado have a wide range of different habitats from beaches and mangrove-lined wetlands through to lowland rainforest and tropical dry forest, and up to cloud forest at the higher elevations. This variety of zones means there is an unbelievable biodiversity.
There are two coastlines, the Caribbean and the Pacific, and both have fabulous beaches where you can relax and enjoy just being on holiday. It has a beautiful landscape inland too, with active volcanoes like the iconic Arenal, wide open plains where cattle ranching takes place and picturesque valleys where the local farmers grow lush tropical fruits.
If your thing is to be active on holiday then Costa Rica has a lot to offer. The national parks all have very good walking trails and there are some more strenuous hikes for people looking for a challenge. Outdoor activities like horse-riding, white-water rafting, cycling, kayaking are all available and then there are things like zip-wiring through the rain-forest canopy or canopy walks over high suspension bridges. In short, this country is a bit of a playground.
Costa Rica is well developed for tourism with a wide range of places to stay from small guest houses to luxury lodges and characterful boutique hotels. Being a small country it doesn't take long to get from one place to another so you can take in lots of places in a week or two and can easily have time to do some wildlife watching or birding and also time on the beach, at a spa pampering yourself, or getting the adrenalin pumping on adventure activities. There is no problem to mix different grades of accommodation, so if you fancy keeping the costs down for part of the trip and then having a few days of luxury that’s fine. And we can offer the whole trip with flights, transfers, accommodation and guiding or if you’d prefer to do your own thing why not consider a self-drive. We can arrange the car hire and pre-book all your accommodation for you so you can pootle along at your own pace. Whichever way appeals to you though, you’ll have an amazing time if you decide to go for a holiday in Costa Rica.
Traversing this small country you'll be amazed by the richness and variety of the scenery and wildlife.
Experience the rich diversity of Costa Rica's ecosystems and marvel at the array of bird and animal life at wildlife hotspots.
If you're an adrenalin junkie and love nature this holiday is for you. A rip roaring coast-to-coast adventure across Costa Rica!
A holiday of contrasts as you explore the magnificent Galapagos archipelago and then travel onward to see highlights of Costa Rica.
Relax at two of the very best hotels. Enjoy the great outdoors and Costa Rica's amazing nature at Arenal and Golfo Dulce.
Read about some of the inspirational experiences you could have in Costa Rica
Below you'll find some of our very favourite places to stay in Costa Rica. However you can also see our full directory of properties by clicking the "All Places to Stay" button.
An attractive boutique hotel a short drive from San Jose airport with a pool, restaurant and spa.
A classy resort hotel set on Culebra Bay on the north Pacific coast, with restaurants, pools and a spa and a relaxed atmosphere.
A beach resort with an impressive array of facilities including a spa, pool, gym and choice of restaurants, just steps away from the beach.
Evergreen Lodge is just 5 minutes from Tortuguero National Park so is an ideal base for boat rides, hikes and wildlife watching.
Attractive Victorian mansion with wealth of period features and charm, providing top class accommodation, dining and service in San Jose
Luxurious casita accommodation, spa, pool and choice of restaurants all in the shadow of the impressive Arenal volcano.
A gorgeous eco-lodge set amidst landscaped gardens at the edge of the Golfo Dulce in Piedras Blancas National Park.
5/5 from 242 reviews
Time: GMT -6 hours
Flight time: The flying time is about 12 hours from the UK. There are now direct flights from the UK using British Airways. We work with all the major airlines and can offer flights from the UK or via the USA, Panama or a European hub. With the connection times you are looking at around 15 or 16 hours.
Language: Spanish is the official language. English is widely spoken throughout Costa Rica
Visas: Not required for British travellers. Other nationalities should obtain advice from their embassy.
Health: There are no compulsory vaccinations.