Want to immerse yourself in ecotourism at its finest? Costa Rica offers unmatched opportunities to explore the wild wonders of its tropical jungles, lowland estuaries and biodiverse cloud forests, largely in part to its extensive national park system. With May already here, the tourist ‘high season’ is winding down, and afternoon showers are popping up every few days. Locals already know that Costa Rica is at its most beautiful during this period – and here are 7 reasons why this is the best time to visit!
Mornings are sunny for outdoor activities
The green season is named for the luxuriant foliage that is spurred by the rains. But don’t be put off by a little H20 — mornings are still clear and warm, with plenty of time for a surf lesson, a canopy tour or some R&R by the pool. Even better, the clouds often dissipate in time for spectacular sunsets.
Avoid throngs of tourists
The tourist crowds of January are long gone by May, when the countryside feels like your own private playground. June and July pick up again for summer vacationers, but the rest of the season – through October – remain calm and quiet.
Nesting sea turtles and humpback whales
The winter months (May-Oct) of Costa Rica are characterized by phenomenal wildlife watching as Tortuguero welcomes thousands of nesting green and hawksbill sea turtles; Nosara witnesses the mass arrivals of Olive Ridley sea turtles, and the southern Pacific hosts scores of breeding humpback whales. Book a whale watching tour in Dominical or the Osa Peninsula for an unforgettable experience!
Rainforest adventures abound
According to local naturalist guides, the country’s rainforests get even more animated during the green season, when nocturnal creatures begin their various mating trills and rituals. In the Monteverde region, guided night hikes ensure glimpses of kinkajous, red-eyed tree frogs, and other cool night-time creatures.
Flexibility: travel options abound
With fewer crowds, advanced reservations aren’t always necessary, which means you can book last-minute adventure and nature tours on the fly! You won’t feel trapped by a set itinerary and can plan activities from day-to-day as the urge strikes.
Epic surf and scuba diving opportunities
For heart-thumping thrills, head to Pavones, Dominical and the Osa Peninsula’s Cabo Matapalo for epic waves, which are bigger and better during the green season. Surprisingly to many, you’ll discover amazing scuba diving and snorkeling during the rainier months, as nutrient levels rise attracting diverse marine life. Hot spots include the Catalina Islands, Bat Islands and Cano Island.
Airlines feature great off-season rates
Another benefit of traveling during the off-peak season is lower airfares to Costa Rica. Depending on your point of origination fares can be 20 to 30% less. The San Jose international airport (SJO) and Daniel Oduber aiport (LIR) in Liberia welcome more than 20 major carriers, with many offering non-stop service to New York, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, Atlanta, Dallas and other U.S. hubs.