Costa Rica Family Vacation
Know Before You GoPrinter-Friendly Version
- At a Glance
Sandwiched between Nicaragua to the north and Panama to the south, Costa Rica is a tiny country -- about half the size of Kentucky-- yet encompasses wildly diverse terrain and some of the most biodiverse slices of jungle and rainforest in the world. (Biodiverse means a great number of species live in one concentrated area.) From the relatively dry and arid Guanacaste province to the north, to the richly agricultural central valley, to the lush rainforests of the southern coast and the mangrove swamps of the Caribbean side, Costa Rica is like a bunch of little mini-countries. When planning where to go to view wildlife, it helps to think of Costa Rica in terms of biological corridors; for example, jaguars are often seen in Corcovado National Park, but they can also be spotted throughout the Osa Biological Corridor that connects Corcovado with the southern mainland by way of a series of additional nature reserves including Lapa Rios. So if Corcovado is too far for you to venture this time, there are other places to track jaguars as well. Tortuguero is famous for its sea turtles and crocodile-filled mangrove swamps, but many areas to the south of Tortuguero have excellent turtle and crocodile viewing as well.
So you don't think the history of coffee is interesting enough to capture kids' attention? Think again when you go on the famous Café Britt tour, the original coffee plantation tour....
The Divine Dolphin takes you out for a boat ride the puts you right smack into the center of a pod of dolphins, where you spend hours watching them play from just feet away. ...
A well-organized series of terrariums houses 26 species of frogs native to Costa Rica. The nighttime flashlight tour is the real highlight....
Lake / Pond
What did my kids like best about Cerro Chato? It was a tie between the comfy hammocks spread liberally throughout the grounds, and the fact that the cabins are located far enough apart that they didn't feel self-conscious about getting goofy....
Hotel / Motel
"This is a princess bed!" was the immediate response when we saw the crochet-draped four-poster in one of the rooms at Finca Rosa Blanca, and the fairy tale references continued throughout our tour of the 13 quirkily artistic rooms....
Hotel / Motel
It's hard to avoid cliches when describing Hotel Punta Islita, which is one of Costa Rica's top luxury eco-lodges for good reason. Perfectly situated in it's own private cove, the resort has two pools, a small golf course, and a sandy beach....
Hotel / Motel
The surfer/hippie mecca of Montezuma has some of the most entertaining dining in Costa Rica; our hands-down favorite was the Mediterranean-flavored Playa de los Artistas. ...
The main dining establishment (there's also a beachside restaurant) for Hotel Punta Islita, 1492 is quite international and upscale compared to most of what you find in Costa Rica....
At this festive outdoor cafe, a favorite of locals, you sit at handcarved tables shaded by fragrant Guacaste trees and wait for your meal while watching enormous butterflies flit among the flowering shrubs....
Choose your departure and arrival cities below to search for great travel deals.
An Exotic Adventure for Wildlife LoversA Family Vacation in Costa Rica with Babies
1.Dolphin Encounter with The Divine DolphinDolphin Encounter with The Divine Dolphin
Drake Bay, Costa Rica
2.La Paz Waterfall GardensLa Paz Waterfall Gardens
Varablanca, Costa Rica
3.Mt Arenal VolcanoMt Arenal Volcano
Guanacaste, Costa Rica