Costa Rica is a thrill seeker's dream. With so many diverse ecosystems and terrains, it is the perfect adventure playground. With hiking, horse riding, snorkelling, rafting, zip lining, and surfing, there really is something for everyone. With so much variety on offer, we’ve helped you out and narrowed down our top five adventure activities to help you get out and explore the country’s natural wonders...
As the eco-and-adventure tourism capital of Costa Rica, it’s no surprise the country hosts a dizzying array of national parks. From hiking adventures to white water rafting, wildlife encounters and stunning vistas – there’s a National Park to suit everyone. Below are the top five National Parks that cover the highlights of Costa Rica and allow you to get under the skin of this magnificent country.
Costa Rica is regarded as one of the safest, friendliest, most diverse and exotic destinations in the world. And if that wasn’t enough to highlight its family appeal, it is now also possible to fly direct from London with British airways, making it also easily accessible. Here, Imagine Latin America round up five the best family friendly properties in the country to get you started:
Home to more than 600 miles of unspoiled tropical beaches, which span two contrasting coasts - the Pacific and Caribbean – beach holidays here are as varied as you can get. Knowing where to start is tough, and so the guys on the Imagine Latin America team have picked out their top ten beaches to get you started:
Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge
Corcovado and Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica
Reachable only by boat and set in a private reserve amongst Central America’s largest remaining Pacific Coast rainforest, Playa Nicuesa is a delightful eco-lodge offering total seclusion and access to the wildlife hotspot of the Osa Peninsula.
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With just five private one- and two-bedroom cabins and a separate four-bedroom guesthouse, Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge is an intimate affair, offering privacy and comfort in the most wonderful of natural settings. Backed by the dense rainforest of Piedras Blancas National park and fronting the pristine black sands and jade-coloured waters of Golfo Dulce, staying here perfectly combines luxury and authentic rustic charm. All accommodations seamlessly combine indoors and outdoors, and feature open-air shower-bathrooms, canopied beds, ceiling fans, and wrap-around louvered doors and windows that lead to a private verandah with spectacular views of the rainforest. Nothing quite compares to being sung to sleep by the ocean and then awoken by the deep roar of howler monkeys.
Guests at Playa Nicuesa enjoy three excellent meals a day that feature fresh organic ingredients from the gardens, sea and rainforest. Food is an important part of the experience here, and you’ll be amazed at the variety of fruits and the freshness of the seafood. After a day’s adventures, return to Playa Nicuesa and enjoy a soothing cocoa-butter massage in the privacy of your cabin or on the beach deck tucked in between the coconut palms and the ocean, or just swing in your hammock on the verandah, lulled by the waves.
Beach, nature and adventure activities abound at Playa Nicuesa. The ocean is calm and inviting for a swim, and you can go snorkelling or take a kayaking trip along the coastline through the mangrove ecosystem. The rainforest, full of fruiting trees and tropical flowering plants, is a siren call for wildlife and adventure enthusiasts, and you take plenty of unforgettable hikes on the extensive trail network. The excellent and knowledgeable guides will be happy to tailor your experience. If you are a birder, you’ll be in heaven, and you may be lucky enough to see a nesting harpy eagle or a flock of scarlet macaws. Three-toed sloths, blue morpho butterflies and tree-frogs are all likely to be part of your experience in the forest, while at sea you may be fortunate enough to witness a super-pod of dolphins speeding through or, in season, the breach of a humpback whale.
When to go
From May to December it's the 'green season' when it rains more than the rest of the year, it can sometimes rain for 3 days in a row. However, this is rainforest and walking in the rain doesn't ruin the experience. October is the wettest month, the creeks rise and roads can be impassable. There are few people staying at Lapa Rios, though, so it’s much more intimate. January to April are the drier months, when it’s idyllic here. The busiest time of year is the second half of December, when you need to book well in advance.
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