As someone who loves exploring, traveling and exploring some of nature’s most amazing landscapes, I understand that desire to explore. Apparently, Central American backpackers always mention Costa Rica as one of their favorite places.
Besides endless activities, there are a lot of interesting wildlife species and beaches that look like paradise.
The place is one that many travelers enjoy returning to over and over again.
As I explored Costa Rica’s beauty, I met many backpackers, each with their own travel tips.
In this guide, I’ve combined those tips with my own to help new, and returning, backpackers in Costa Rica!
When To Go:
You can visit Costa Rica at any time of year since there is no tough or dangerous season like hurricane season.
In order to decide when to visit, you should decide what type of experience you would like.
During December through April, you might be able to meet many backpackers if you don’t mind crowds.
Go during the “green” season, which is May through November, if you are on a budget and don’t mind some rain.
In my opinion, both seasons have their own reasons for being loved. It is the best time of year to enjoy the sun and heat on the beach while relaxing or doing beach activities during the high season. The green season is the best for hiking, seeing the cloud & rain forests, and rafting.
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In general, the tips you’ve heard about traveling and backpacking apply to Costa Rica as well. Below are a few things you should keep in mind:
- You should learn at least the basics of Spanish before visiting Costa Rica.
- Make sure you pack light. Then, cut everything in half. After that, cut it in half again.
- Do not display valuables such as jewelry, electronics (including cameras), or brand-name bags.
- You can help yourself along the way by buying maps and travel books. Several maps are available for you to choose from, and you can print any of them as PDFs!
- Hiking in ultra-remote areas requires a guide, so consider hiring one.
What To Budget:
The amount of luxury you need and the length of your trip will determine your budget. Around $2,000 (USD) can be spent on a month-long backpacking trip.
Recently, Costa Rica has had some great hostels, you can even rent tents and camps to save money on accommodations at some hostels. You’ll have more money to spend on attractions and tours if you keep your accommodation costs low.
Don’t forget that you probably won’t be able to get it all done in a single trip.
Where To Go:
Even if you stay here for a month, you won’t be able to see everything. I’ve been traveling to Costa Rica for over 16 years, and I’m still discovering new adventures!
Decide which region of Costa Rica offers the most for your trip by splitting it into regions.
The following are a few places you should consider visiting:
Backpackers tend to start their adventures in San Jose, the capital, because it is a convenient base from which to access popular destinations, including rapids and two volcanoes.
Besides having travel terminals, it is also home to the main airport (San Jose International Airport), so you can travel anywhere you want.
Depending on your preferences, I recommend staying in San Jose for one to three days.
Whether you are traveling alone or with a group, Costa Rica is a great country for backpackers. Throughout the country, you can explore beaches, waterfalls, rainforests, and hostels on your own, off the beaten path.
Backpackers in Costa Rica love the beach – it is the only thing they don’t have to pay for! Let’s be clear: Costa Rica doesn’t come cheap when it comes to travel. Nicaragua’s border crossing will leave you with severe sticker shock if you’re backpacking Central America.
I recommend backpacking in Costa Rica for at least 10 days to experience the variety of nature that the country has to offer. You can visit two national parks during this time, as well as a beach on the Pacific coast (Nicoya peninsula) and Puerto Viejo on the Caribbean coast.
There is nothing better than backpacking Costa Rica at times. I know how easy it is to get carried away. Your role as an ambassador for your country is awesome, so keep that in mind.
Using the least amount of plastic bottles is one way to make a positive impact when we travel and get rid of any ugly stereotypes associated with our country. When you do buy them, refill them! Grayl Geopresses are recommended. Check out your hostel for refills! You can reduce plastic in many ways!