From sprawling beaches flanked with palm trees to lush forests teeming with tropical birds to staggering volcanos riddled with hiking trails, Costa Rica is the classic combination of pristine landscapes and thrilling adventure. Touted as the world’s first “carbon neutral” nation, this country’s thrilling eco-friendly adventures allow locals and visitors to explore an incredibly diverse collection of wildlife and flora. Perfect for the curious, conscientious thrill-seekers, we’re about to reveal a few activities that will take you off the beaten path and into Costa Rica’s unspoiled natural paradise.
Best Places to Go Hiking
Pack sturdy shoes! Trust us. You’ll want to hike and walk as much as possible through Costa Rica’s biodynamic terrains. One of the most iconic hikes is the park trail leading up to Arenal Volcano. Along the way, you’ll pass through rainforest and savanna terrain, and hike over black-crusted lava rock. And it’s all on the same trail. In the Montverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve, you’ll trek through a mysterious, dewy haze and pass through dense and winding vines to catch a glimpse of rustling birds and curious monkeys. For those who crave the sea, we suggest you head to the Cahuita National Park, where you can leisurely hike along soft, white-sand beaches with stunning coastal views not to be missed.
Best Places to Go Zip-Lining
Fly through the sky to see the rich, diverse foliage from above on one of Costa Rica’s famous zip line courses. In the Central Valley, the San Luis Canopy Tour has 15 lines with 18 platforms that range from gradual descent zip line courses for beginners to advanced courses for adrenaline junkies. For the adventurous traveling in the south, we recommend the Manual Antonio Safari Zip Line. Their courses allow you to immerse yourself into nature while swinging high above the ground like Tarzan, strolling along suspension bridges and rappelling into a country’s lush rainforest. It’s a nature lover’s paradise.
Best Canopy Tours & Aerial Trams
Enjoy a view to a thrill! See Costa Rica’s famous forests like never before from canopy bridges and aerial trams. In the Jaco Rainforest, the aerial tram takes you through the native flora while a naturalist regales you with fascinating stories that only a true nature lover will fully enjoy. To walk through the towering trees in Arenal National Park, you can stroll over the Mistico Hanging Bridges – a collection of suspended walkways high above the ground that weave throughout the thick rainforest. In the same area, visitors can hop on a SkyTram to get up close and personal with the diverse wildlife living high in the treetops.
Best Places to Go Horseback Riding
Giddy up and go off the beaten path! See some of the nation’s most popular landmarks on horseback. For the easiest rides in the country, you should visit Guanacaste, home to a cluster of working haciendas or cattle ranches. A local favorite is the Hotel Hacienda Guachipleon, where you’ll mosey down trails past famous natural wonders like Las Chorreras waterfall, the Rio Negro Hot Springs and Rincon de la Vieja National Park. Another option… you can escape to the Nicoya Peninsula for unforgettable rides along the Gulf of Nicoya and the breathtaking Tempisque River. It’s just one of the several ways to experience the fun-filled adventures that await you in Costa Rica.