As the acknowledged home of eco-tourism, Costa Rica is high on the list of destinations for travellers seeking unspoiled natural beauty, and the awesome thrill of finding yourself in what can certainly be described as one of the last best places – with the promise of adventure and discovery, and the potential to experience the all-encompassing power of nature. With a culture that celebrates wilderness, in a land that puts unparalleled natural beauty on display at every turn, Costa Rica rewards by indulging every sense – in particular the sense of wonder. It’s this legendary spirit of celebration that’s known to Costa Ricans as pura vida, or “the good life”. To fully understand it, you’ve got to live it.
In Costa Rica, you can experience nature on the most elemental levels. This is, after all, a place with coastlines on the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, a place which springs up from crystal blue ocean waters to majestic volcanic peaks – six of which are classified as active. Between the oceans and the mountaintops, you’ll experience the many wonders of the tropical rainforest. Spend some time at Arenal Volcano National Park and you can get a great view of many of the forest’s animals as you hike the 16 hanging bridges. You can learn and see more at Arenal Natura Park, a dedicated nature preserve. You can also get an authentic experience of local culture in the village of La Fortuna. Then, of course, there’s the volcano – though Volcán Arenal doesn’t provide the lava lamp light show it once did, seeing this majestic peak on a clear day is a spectacular, almost mystical, experience.
A Costa Rican vacation can provide you with everything you want from a tropical vacation, in a setting that’s unlike any other. Stick to the coast and you’ve got amazing beaches with all sorts of fun on, in and under the water. Head inland, and this is truly “where the wild things are” – among them monkeys, jaguars and some of the most beautiful birds on the planet. Costa Rica’s rainforests have been called “the most biologically intense region on the planet” by National Geographic (translation: lots and lots of animals, and more shades of green than you’ve ever imagined). And because any adventure should have at least the potential of danger, please watch for crocodiles.
Yes, Costa Rica is for nature lovers and adventure lovers. As home to some of the world’s most beautiful secluded beaches, it’s also an amazing place for a romantic getaway. Resorts provide all the luxury and comfort you’d want, while each day beckons with infinite possibilities for adventure or indulgent relaxation.
The sights of Costa Rica virtually guarantee you an Instagram feed that will be the envy of everyone back home. On the other hand, don’t forget to put down the camera and truly look around – immerse yourself, breathe and be in the moment. If there’s ever a place where “going with the flow” is encouraged, this is it. Give yourself to pura vida and go where the spirits move you. Then let the light in your eyes and the smile on your face be the best testament to a vacation well-spent.