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    Costa Rica Hotel & Resort Travel Guide

    Costa Rica is a colorful destination in Central America. Known for its diverse flora and fauna, it’s a major advocate of conservation and ecotourism. Whether you’re looking to hike through tropical rainforests or veg at the seaside, book your flights to Costa Rica today and get ready for ocean breezes and palm trees.

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    Geography

    Costa Rica is nestled between Nicaragua to the north and Panama to the south. This Central American destination features a varied landscape with all kinds of terrain, from beaches and volcanoes to jungles and cloud forests. These regions support an impressive ecosystem with an assortment of plant and animal species. In fact, this tiny country contains 5 percent of the world’s biodiversity, and 25 percent of the land is protected.

    Best and Worst Times to Visit

    Because this country sits just north of the equator, it experiences toasty temperatures year round. The high season, which the locals refer to as summer, lasts from late November to April. This time of year usually sees the most sunshine. Some argue that the best time to visit is during December and January because the scenery is still green from the wet season, but the rain has tapered off.

    The locals call the wet season winter and it usually runs from May to November. Certain regions see an increase in rainfall, making the landscape especially green and lush. Depending on the region, it may rain every day, but in other areas it could only pour for a few hours. If you’re looking to capitalize on the sunshine, the rainy season may not be the best time to visit.

    Lodging

    If you’re in search of an accommodation with everything on site, book a stay at one of the best resorts in Costa Rica. Many of these luxury places include multiple restaurants, beach access, and full-service spas. Some even boast several pool areas and recreational activities, such as tennis courts and watersport rentals.

    You’ll also find standard Costa Rica hotels that provide some of the same amenities on a smaller scale. Oftentimes, hotels in the area offer complimentary breakfasts, lounges, and computer stations to accommodate your travel needs. Check out our cheap deals on resorts and hotels right here with Expedia.com to keep your vacation within your budget.

    Things to Do

    Costa Rica boasts some of the world’s most diverse flora and fauna, and you can witness it all at the national parks scattered around the region. Explore the tropical rainforest at Corcovado National Park and hike the dormant volcano at the Arenal Volcano National Park. Manuel Antonio National Park is where you’ll catch sight of wild monkeys, while Barra Honda National Park includes caves of limestone. These parks usually offer a number of ecotourism activities that allow visitors to experience the landscape and support the conservation efforts.

    For warm sand and salty sea air, head to the shore. Costa Rica flaunts serene beaches, perfect for relaxing and soaking up the sunshine or making a splash in the ocean. Retreat to Playa Potrero and find shade under a palm tree, or discover peace and quiet along the tranquil shores of Samara. Hit the waves at Playa Avellana, aka Little Hawaii, which stirs up some of the best surf in the country, attracting surfers from around the globe. You can also stay at one of the resorts in Jaco, where you’ll find another sweet spot for surfing.

    Take a break from the beach scene and dedicate some time to learning about the Costa Rican culture. San Jose has a number of must-see exhibits, including the Costa Rica Art Museum, Costa Rica National Museum, and the Costa Rica Jade Museum. Discover Central America’s pre-Hispanic history at the Museum of Native Cultures in Sarapiqui, and don’t miss Heredia’s Museum of Popular Culture.

    Culture

    Baseball is to America what soccer is to Costa Rica. The English taught the sport to locals in the early 20th century, and Costa Ricans have been scoring goals ever since.

    Bullfighting is another sport close to Costa Ricans’ hearts. It’s considered the country’s Super Bowl, with the most famous fight occurring in Zapote each year. Unlike the Spanish version though, the fighters don’t kill the bulls. These bullfights involve the contestants dodging the animal and running around the arena, much like a rodeo.

    The Costa Rican people are also big fans of festivals. In early January, they host the Fiesta de Palmares, which is a massive carnival with parades, concerts, comedy shows, and bullfights. The Fiesta de Los Diablitos is another popular festival that celebrates the indigenous culture and their ancestral spirits. Meanwhile, Independence Day falls on September 15 and commemorates the country’s separation from Spanish rule. During this celebration, the streets are lined with paper lanterns, and the Freedom Torch is carried from Guatemala to Cartago, the colonial capital of Costa Rica.

    Food

    Gallo pinto, a black bean and rice dish, is a staple of Costa Rican cuisine. Usually it’s served with a side of meat, salad, and fried plantains. Ceviche is another favorite fare, which includes raw fish, often white sea bass, with lime juice and chopped vegetables. Tamales, chicharron, and empanadas are common meals, too. As for drinks, coffee is the backbone of the culture, while the sweet cinnamon drink, horchata, and the sugar cane drink, guaro, are popular, too.

    Sip on horchata and join one of the ecotours in Costa Rica. Visit during one of the major festivals to get a sense of the culture or escape to the serene shoreline for an unforgettable sojourn. Here at Expedia.com, we provide a variety of cheap deals on Costa Rica resorts and hotels. Book today get ready to take on this diverse destination.

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    Costa Rica Hotels
    Costa Rica Hotels

    Hotels in Guanacaste - North Pacific Coast

    Hotel Tamarindo Diria Beach Resort - Tamarindo Hotels
    Rating: 3.5 Stars

    Hotel Tamarindo Diria Beach Resort

    Tamarindo Beach, Tamarindo - Map
     
     
    "Tamarindo diria"
    Ocean front room. Lots of mosquitos and some baby crabs got into the room as the door when closed wasn't a tight fit. Could hear the guests in rooms adjacent to you. Room was clean and comfortable. Staff was very friendly and helpful.
    A Traveller
    Hotel Tamarindo Diria Beach Resort fronts a white-sand beach in a dry tropical forest of Costa Rica's Guanacaste province …More
    The Harmony Hotel - Nosara Hotels
    Rating: 4.0 Stars

    The Harmony Hotel

    Guiones Beach, Nosara - Map
     
     
    "GOOD VIBRATIONS AT HARMONY HOTEL"
    Each day at Harmony Hotel began with coffee made in my room and then enjoyed on the private outdoor deck where I could sit comfortably and check my work online. Around 6:30 AM, I would then proceed to the surf board checkout stand, sign out a board and then walk the private path to Playa Guiones and paddle out with all the other locals. Great, long rides in warm, clear water beneath the warm morning sunshine. Back to Harmony to shower off on the private deck of my room, and then breakfast at the Hotel....delicious. The Staff is very friendly. A little nap poolside before Yoga class and then meet friends in the spacious, relaxed Juice Bar. Thanks to David and Eduardo who were very kind and helpful.
    Traveller from Santa Monica, CA
    Situated in Nosara, this romantic hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Nosara Beach and Safari Surf School. Nosara Wildlife …More
    Flamingo Beach Resort & Spa - Playa Flamingo Hotels
    Rating: 3.5 Stars
    $168

    Flamingo Beach Resort & Spa

    Flamingo Beach, Playa Flamingo - Map
     
     
    "Very relaxing excellent service, right on the beac"
    We had an excellent vacation, very beautiful hotel right on the beach, at a quiet location. Hotel staff was very nice and helpful
    Traveller from San Jose, CR
    This Playa Flamingo resort is on the beach, 0.5 mi (0.8 km) from Flamingo Beach, and within 6 mi (10 km) of Conchal Beach and …More

    Hotels in San Jose

    Hotel Presidente - San Jose City Center, Costa Rica - San Jose Hotels
    Rating: 3.5 Stars
    $119

    Hotel Presidente - San Jose City Center, Costa Rica

    Avenida Central, Calle 7, San Jose - Map
     
     
    "Hotel has access to restaurants & places around. "
    Plaza was just around the corner. Walking distance to a lot of things to do.
    A Traveller
    Located in the heart of San Jose, this hotel is steps from Morazan Park, National Theater, and Gold Museum. Jade Museum and …More
    Hotel Luisiana - Santa Ana Hotels
    Rating: 3.5 Stars
    $63

    Hotel Luisiana

    100 west and 400 south from Cruz Roja, Santa Ana - Map
     
     
    "Great location of a great hotel."
    In all and counting the trip was not for fun! This hotel is above average!! Prices at the restaurant are a little high but still very much a good experience. I would recommend and stay there again without hesitation.
    A Traveller
    A restful alternative to the busier resorts of Costa Rica, Hotel Luisiana is 10 minutes' drive from the international airport …More
    Best Western Irazu Hotel & Casino - San Jose Hotels
    Rating: 3.5 Stars

    Best Western Irazu Hotel & Casino

    General Canas Hwy KM3, San Jose - Map
     
     
    It's not close to the beach but Is close to downtown in San Jose and safe place to stay and they have Little grocery store and pharmacy it's very convenient in area for my husband and I
    Traveller from mass
    This family-friendly San Jose hotel is located near the airport, within 2 mi (3 km) of Estadio Nacional, Museum of Costa …More

    Hotels in Arenal Volcano Region

    Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort - La Fortuna Hotels
    Rating: 4.5 Stars

    Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort

    13 km oeste del centro, La Fortuna - Map
     
     
    "Don't Settle for a Cheaper Hotel"
    We originally booked at the Mountain Paradise Hotel. We liked the Tabacon from what we saw online, but wanted to save some money. What a mistake! The first hotel's beds were wet from all of the moisture, dirty and smelled awful. We switched to the Tabacon and it was night and day. Clean, beautiful resort, comfortable dry beds, friendly staff, and the warm thermal springs are breathtaking, and beyond relaxing. We got into the thermal springs free since we got a room there which saved us the $45 entrance fee we would have paid since we were planning on visiting a hot springs anyways. The staff was super friendly and upgraded our room for free. The days we were there it was cloudy so you couldn't see the volcano from any hotels. They said it's hit or miss on whether or not you can see it from any location, so I'm not actually sure if you can see it from this hotel, but regardless the views are beautiful. Save yourself the headache and don't ruin your vacation they way ours almost got ruined. Stay at a little nicer hotel like the Tabacon and you wont regret it!
    Traveller from California
    Located in Arenal Hot Springs, this luxury resort is within 2 mi (3 km) of Arenal Natura Ecological Park, Baldi Hot Springs …More
    Volcano Lodge and Springs - La Fortuna Hotels
    Rating: 4.0 Stars

    Volcano Lodge and Springs

    7 Km West From La Fortuna, La Fortuna - Map
     
     
    Nice staff, great food, nice room and beautiful location. Saw lots of birds while eating breakfast. Best free breakfast on our trip. Only downside is too far to walk anywhere.
    A Traveller
    Located in Arenal Hot Springs, this spa lodge is within 2 mi (3 km) of Arenal Natura Ecological Park, Baldi Hot Springs, and …More
    Hotel El Silencio del Campo - La Fortuna Hotels
    Rating: 3.5 Stars

    Hotel El Silencio del Campo

    5 Km West Of La Fortuna Central Park, La Fortuna - Map
     
     
    "Great Place for Eco Family Stay"
    We love to be outside and love to be able to interact with nature. My children 10 and eight both loved the farm and being able to wake up and milk the cows and gather the eggs from the chickens. The restaurant food is local if not even from the farm and it is excellent. Every staff person was beyond friendly and beyond helpful. They were a joy to be around and added to the experience. The Villa is very nice and well appointed. The hotel is close to the waterfall and it's very close to the volcano and the park and all the other things around downtown. As a family of four who likes adventure but also likes comfort this is a five star hotel!
    Traveller from Huntsville, AL
    Located in Arenal Hot Springs, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Baldi Hot Springs and Ecotermales Fortuna. Ecoglide …More