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Costa Rica is an icon of ecotourism worldwide and is the fourth country with the highest rate of tourism competitiveness in Latin America. Costa Rica has incomparable destinations: paradisiacal beaches, dense jungles and majestic volcanoes.

So today we bring you the best Costa Rica travel tips and invite you to discover our Pura Vida lifestyle!

costa rica travel tips

Costa Rica Travel Tips for packing

To properly pack when visiting Costa Rica it is important to be very clear which areas you are going to visit.

The most important Costa Rica travel tip for packing is not to think that Costa Rica is all jungle.

Costa Rica generally has a warm climate, however, we have a great diversity of microclimates that can change the conditions of precipitation and temperature.

Costa Rica rainforest Arenal volcano

Image courtesy of Wikipedia

High areas or those near a volcano are cool and sporadically drizzled. As well as the jungle areas. Our recommendation is to wear comfortable clothes, long pants and pack a light jacket, preferably waterproof.

If you plan to stay closer to the beach do not forget to pack your swimsuit, and light clothing like tank tops and shorts.

The activities you are planning are also important to take into account when packing.  If you are an explorer and are planning hiking excursions, our recommendation is to use closed shoes, preferably hiking shoes which will keep your feet dry and will help you avoid accidents.

The use of insect repellent is highly recommended.  Even though diseases like Chikungunya and Dengue are not regularly a threat, Costa Rica is still a tropical country and there are always sources of infections throughout the country.  You will find a great variety of repellents in drug stores and grocery stores so there is no need to add the extra weight in your luggage.

Sunscreen is also a must but as the insect repellent, it is easy to buy throughout the country.  And to avoid any sunburns packing a hat is also recommended.

Our Costa Rica Travel Tip is to always buy organic options of insect repellent and sunscreen and pack your reusable bottle for water.  Please say no to single-use plastics during your visit.


Costa Rica Travel Tips for health and security

Traveling to Costa Rica will not require any vaccines besides the routine ones, however if you are traveling from any other country a yellow fever shot could be required if this country is part of the countries with risk of yellow fever transmission.  Some vaccines that are recommended for general traveling, but not required include: Hepatitis A and B, Typhoid, Malaria and Rabies.

Although no one expects to get sick while enjoying vacations, it is important to have the relevant information if something should happen. If you need medical attention while visiting Costa Rica, you have two options: visit a private hospital or visit one of Costa Rica’s social security clinics. The prices of the public option are more accessible, however they will always have a cost if you are not insured. Both options will accept your private health insurance as long as your coverage includes the care in our country and the treatments to be performed. This is why our Costa Rica travel tip for health is to be sure to ask your local insurance company before traveling.


Image courtesy of Diamante Eco Paek

If you travel with medicines, it is preferable to take them in their original package and with the prescription signed by the doctor.

In regard to water consumption, although Costa Rica has an enviable network of drinking water throughout the country, some natural sediments can cause your stomach to feel upset if you are not used to them, so we recommend consuming filtered water especially in rural areas. Remember to avoid the use of single-use plastics.

Despite being the safest country in the region, Costa Rica is not exempt from insecurity as it happens in the rest of the world. There are cases of theft of tourists, although most of them occur without violence and taking advantage of carelessness. Basic precautions should be taken in crowded tourist areas like bus stations. If you rent a car for your trips, never leave valuables in it. Likewise, it is preferable to leave your documentation and valuable objects in your accommodation place.

Stay in one of the most exclusive resorts in Costa Rica, providing the greatest peace of mind. We offer a wide variety of luxury vacation rental options.


Documentation needed to travel to Costa Rica


If you travel to Costa Rica from any country in the European Union, the United States, Japan or Canada, it is not necessary to apply for a visa to enter the country, only valid passport and return ticket. If you wish to rent a car, all foreigners can drive with their valid license for a maximum of 3 months.

Extra Costa Rica Travel Tips: At the moment of entering Costa Rica, it is advisable to make sure that the passport has been stamped since the omission of this can cause problems at your departure.

Responsible ecotourism for when you travel to Costa Rica

Help us preserve our natural resource with these simple Costa Rica travel tips:

– No littering

– If you want to take a souvenir home, do not take seashells, stones, or any other natural element. Prefer to buy souvenirs manufactured locally in the community you visit.

– Visit some of our national parks, in this way you will help to conserve these protected areas

– Never buy wild animals as pets

– Do not feed the animals

Costa Rica Monkey - Conchal Beach

Other Costa Rica travel tips:

  • Dollars are widely accepted however we recommend you to have small bills with you. $100 bills are not always accepted, and even if they do accept the bill, you will get the change in colones and the exchange rate will not be as good as if you go to the bank.
  • If you are not using roaming on your phone, we recommend you to go to your local provider and ask if buying a SIM card in Costa Rica will work for you. Sometimes the phones need to be unblocked in order to work with foreign SIM cards
  • The standard voltage in Costa Rica is 120V, same as in the US, so you won’t need an adapter.


Stay in one of our luxury vacation rentals on your next visit to Costa Rica and your personalized concierge will be happy to share with you all the Costa Rica travel tips for having the best experience ever!