Backpacking Destinations in Costa Rica
Here are the top 20 things to see in Costa Rica.
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1. Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve is a must-visit destination for adventure lovers in the northwestern part of Costa Rica. The reserve is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including over 400 bird species. You can explore the reserve’s lush cloud forest; the best Costa Rica travel tip is to take a guided tour or zip-line through the treetops.
2. Manuel Antonio National Park
Manuel Antonio National Park is a popular destination on the central Pacific coast; the park features stunning beaches, hiking trails, and abundant wildlife, including monkeys, sloths, and iguanas. You can camp in the park or stay in nearby hostels and guesthouses.
3. Arenal Volcano National Park
Arenal Volcano National Park is another park located in the northern part of Costa Rica and is home to the country’s most active volcano. You can hike the volcano’s trails, soak in natural hot springs, and explore the park’s lush rainforest.
4. Corcovado National Park
Corcovado National Park is located on the Osa Peninsula in the southwestern part of Costa Rica. The park has a wide range of wildlife, including jaguars, tapirs, and monkeys. You can hike the park’s trails and camp in the wilderness.
5. Tortuguero National Park
Tortuguero National Park is located on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica and is famous for its large population of sea turtles. You can explore the park’s canals by boat or kayak and hike through its lush rainforest.
6. Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca is a laid-back beach town on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica. You can relax on the town’s stunning beaches, explore its vibrant nightlife, and sample its delicious Caribbean cuisine.
7. La Fortuna Waterfall
La Fortuna Waterfall is located near Arenal Volcano National Park. It is a popular destination for the waterfall that drops 75 meters into a natural pool, making it the perfect spot for a refreshing swim after a long hike.
8. Uvita Beach
Uvita Beach is located on the southern Pacific coast of Costa Rica and is known for its stunning natural beauty. You can hike through the nearby rainforest, explore the beach’s rock formations, and go whale watching during the migration season.
The best thing to do in Costa Rica is to visit Tamarindo, a popular destination on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica. The town is known for its stunning beaches, vibrant nightlife, and surfing culture. Tamarindo can take surf lessons, go on fishing trips, or relax on the beach.
10. San Jose
While San Jose may not be the most picturesque destination on this list, it’s worth a visit for its rich culture and history. Backpackers can explore the city’s museums, visit its colonial-era buildings, and sample its delicious cuisine.
11. Drake Bay
In this Costa Rica travel guide, Drake Bay is the only remote destination on the Osa Peninsula, offering a chance to explore the country’s pristine rainforest and marine life. You can go on guided hikes, whale-watching tours, and snorkeling trips to explore the diverse ecosystem.
12. Samara Beach
Samara Beach is a beautiful, laid-back town on the Nicoya Peninsula, perfect for relaxing and soaking up the sun. The town has a vibrant surf culture, plenty of beachside restaurants and bars, and horseback riding and yoga opportunities.
13. Rincon de la Vieja National Park
Rincon de la Vieja National Park is located in Guanacaste. It has incredible ecosystems, including dry forests, cloud forests, and hot springs. You can explore the park’s trails, dip in the natural hot springs, and witness the stunning volcanic landscape.
14. Cahuita National Park
Cahuita National Park is a protected area on the southern Caribbean coast. It is known for its vibrant coral reefs and wildlife, including sloths, howler monkeys, and various bird species. If you want to explore the Costa Rica adventure side, you can hike through the park, relax on its secluded beaches, and snorkel or scuba dive to explore the colorful marine life.
15. Tenorio Volcano National Park
Tenorio Volcano National Park is located in the northern part of Costa Rica and has stunning Rio Celeste. This bright blue river gets its color from the minerals in the water. You can swim in the river’s natural pools and witness the unique natural phenomenon.
16. Playa Santa Teresa
Playa Santa Teresa is a popular destination for surfers and backpackers on the Nicoya Peninsula. The town has a laid-back vibe, with plenty of restaurants, bars, and yoga studios. Visitors can take surf lessons, ride horseback, or relax on the beach.
Montezuma is a bohemian beach town on the southern tip of the Nicoya Peninsula. The town has a vibrant arts and music scene, with plenty of restaurants, bars, and beachside cafes. It also offers you to take yoga classes, go on waterfall hikes, and explore the town’s unique culture.
18. Playa Grande
Playa Grande is a secluded beach on the Pacific coast known for its nesting population of leatherback sea turtles. You can enjoy the turtles coming ashore to lay their eggs during nesting season and relax on the pristine beach.
19. Playa Conchal
Playa Conchal is a beautiful beach on the northern Pacific coast known for its clear turquoise waters and white sand beaches. Backpackers can relax on the beach, go snorkeling, or explore the nearby fishing village of Brasilito.
20. La Paz Waterfall Gardens
La Paz Waterfall Gardens is a nature reserve located near San Jose and is home to various wildlife, including jaguars, monkeys, and toucans. You can enjoy its butterfly and hummingbird gardens and witness the stunning waterfalls.
Costa Rica is a dream destination with its stunning natural beauty, diverse landscapes, and rich culture. These 20 destinations are the must-visit spots for backpackers in Costa Rica. Whether you’re looking to hike through lush rainforests, relax on stunning beaches, or soak in natural hot springs, Costa Rica has something for every backpacker. So, what are you waiting for? Let’s start backpacking in Costa Rica.