Nicknamed the “golden coast”, the region of Guanacaste is the place to go for an idyllic Costa Rican vacation. It’s brimming with a spectacular range of biodiversity, from tropical beaches and volcanoes to waterfalls tucked deep into the rainforest. It truly has a range of contrasts in scenery and atmosphere, which provides a paradise for every type of traveler. You could stay near the beaches to indulge in sunbathing and luxurious resort amenities, or retreat to the rainforest to surround yourself with lush greenery, volcanoes, and hot springs.
No matter where you decide to stay, activities abound including horseback riding, sailing, snorkeling, zip lining, cloud forest excursions, and so much more. Plus, you’ll want to taste test the famous local coffee! Guanacaste is a special destination that caters to romantic holidays, family beach getaways, group adventures, and luxurious vacations for all.
Top 5 Beaches
Del Coco Beach
Mt. Arenal Volcano Hiking
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve Activities
Top 5 Resorts
Margaritaville Beach Resort (Flamingo Beach)
Jardin Del Eden Boutique Hotel (Tamarindo Beach; Adults Only)
Reserva Conchal (Conchal Beach)
The Springs Resort & Spa (La Fortuna/Arenal Volcano)
The Royal Corin Thermal Water Spa & Resort (San Carlos/Arenal Volcano)
Must-Try Food & Drink
Arroz Con Leche
A Quick Language Lesson
Buenos Días - Good Morning
Buenas Tardes - Good Afternoon
Buenas Noches – Good Night
Por Favor - Please
Gracías - Thank You
De Nada - You’re Welcome
The closest airport for Guanacaste is the Liberia/Daniel Oduber Quirós International Airport (LIR). It is located just north of the popular beach and resort areas. Depending on where you are staying, it should be around 30 minutes to an hour and a half from the airport. If you are staying just outside Guanacaste near Mount Arenal, the drive from the airport will be around two and a half hours. Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO) is also an option, but transport from its location to different regions in and around Guanacaste could take between three to five hours.
Renting a car in Costa Rica is not efficient or cost-effective. Private and shuttle transportation are the most common options because they are more comfortable, less stressful, and will likely be the best for your wallet. Plus, many resorts and tour operators offer affordable transportation options.
In regards to currency, Costa Rican colones are the standard, but USD is accepted in many places. It’s wise to carry both, as any change you receive will be in colones. Credit cards are also widely accepted and ATMs can be accessed at local banks (most close between 10pm-5am).
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