Costa Rica

San José

A bustling, modern city in the middle of the Central Valley.

Fully a third of Costa Rica's population lives in San José itself, a bustling, congested modern city in the middle of the Central Valley, where most international flights arrive.

It is worth a short visit for a taste of local life and to take in some of the principal sights:

  • the National Theatre is the most lavish building in the capital. Funded by a coffee tax in the late 19th century its baroque interior parades the wealth of the coffee planters in neo-colonial style.
  • the Pre-Columbian Gold Museum is an underground museum containing thousands of gold artefacts from as early as 500 BC. Exhibits range from plain body ornaments, bracelets, earrings, chest plates, little bells and earrings to intricately worked representations of local animals: charming frogs, birds of prey and delicate figurines. A gallery in the foyer shows the work of contemporary Costa Rican artists.
  • the Jade Museum holds the largest collection of jade carvings in the Americas and has displays of pre-Columbian art, pottery and sculpture. The museum is on the top floor of an office building and so has good views over the capital.
  • the Museum of Costa Rican Art contains a small collection of 19th and 20th century painting and sculpture by national and international artists with changing exhibitions. It is located in a large, well-planted park near the city centre created 35 years ago on what was formerly the city's airport.

There is a good choice of hotels in and around the city itself, and in the surrounding countryside of the Central Valley.

Start planning your trip to Costa Rica

Let us know what kind of trip to Costa Rica you are most interested in, and when you are thinking of travelling. Our travel experts know Costa Rica exceptionally well, and will be delighted to offer some initial ideas and advice, and to develop a more detailed design for your holiday as your ideas evolve. You can download a copy of our 48-page Costa Rica brochure here. It includes lots of helpful travel information and detailed outlines of many of the trips we have designed for Costa Rica.

Call us on 020 7281 7788 ( Mon-Fri 9:15-5:45). Or we'd be happy to call you back.

Costa Rica
Our brochure for Costa Rica is packed with ideas and information to help you plan your trip.

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Holiday designs that visit San José

'Creature Comforts'

Costa Rica - Touring and wildlife

First-rate wildlife and nature experiences in first-rate surroundings. Stay at some of Costa Rica’s best boutique and wildlife lodges.

14 nights from £6150

'Couple's Escape'

Costa Rica - Touring and wildlife

A relaxing and inspirational couple's escape with an accent on nature, active well-being, and more than a little luxury.

14 nights from £3995

'Along the Caribbean'

Costa Rica - Touring and wildlife

A wonderful tour visiting the highlights of the Caribbean coast- the flooded forest of Tortuguero, Cahuita National Park, jungle backed beaches and the Bocas del Toro archipelago in Panama.

17 nights from £3395

'Costa Rica Nature Explorer'

Costa Rica - Touring and wildlife

A wonderful trip visiting Costa Rica’s main locations for wildlife in a wide range of habitats, staying in good quality mid-range lodges where nature is the focus.

14 nights from £3230

'Life in Costa Rica'

Costa Rica - Touring and wildlife

Experience local life and culture. Get to know the real San Jose, visit indigenous communities, explore the rainforest and delve into the heart of rural life in 'Chayote Country'.

14 nights from £2715

'A Quieter Costa Rica'

Costa Rica - Touring and wildlife

An inspiring trip spending time in upmarket lodges in just three areas. Experience authentic country life, step out in beautiful mountain scenery and explore the rich wildlife of quiet wetlands.

9 nights from £2655

'Southern Pacific Explorer'

Costa Rica - Touring and wildlife

A 14 night selfdrive itinerary focusing on Costa Rica's South Pacific region: lush, wild coastline, biodiverse Osa Peninsula, remote cloudforest and paramos habitat.

14 nights from £2635

'Plants and Gardens of Costa Rica'

Costa Rica - Touring and wildlife

What could be nicer than two weeks of delightful gardens? Costa Rica has plenty for you to visit and this peaceful itinerary tours the very best of them.

13 nights from £2395

'Coast to Coast'

Costa Rica - Touring and wildlife

One of the best all-round experiences of Costa Rica, visiting the Caribbean and the Pacific, Arenal volcano, Tortuguero's wildlife, deep rain forest, and Monteverde.

15 nights from £1885

'Just a Week in Costa Rica'

Costa Rica - Touring and wildlife

It’s amazing what you can see in just a week. Wildlife, volcanoes, and cloud forest make the most of a short visit.

7 nights from £1090

'Costa Rica & Nicaragua Off the Beaten Track'

Nicaragua - Touring and wildlife

An adventurous and very varied trip, well beyond the normal routes. Rich wildlife experiences, wonderful scenery, evocative history, and vibrant local communities.

6 nights

'Costa Rican Nature Odyssey'

Costa Rica - Touring and wildlife

This enthralling small group tour, escorted by a local naturalist guide, visits all Costa Rica’s key habitats for wonderful wildlife experiences, lovely scenery and times when local life takes centre stage.

14 nights

'Day Walks in Costa Rica'

Costa Rica - Walking and active

Guided and independent day walks in natural sceneries with comfortable lodgings. The amount of walking is tailored to suit you.

14 nights from £2565

'Costa Rican Adventures'

Costa Rica - Walking and active

Get ready for a heady mix of action-packed adventure, all different, all over Costa Rica.

14 nights from £2365

'Young Explorer's Costa Rica'

Costa Rica - Walking and active

A wonderful opportunity for young explorers to get their first experiences of the natural worlds of the American tropics, with all sorts of active adventures along the way

14 nights

'The Birds of Costa Rica'

Costa Rica - Birdwatching

A well-nigh perfect introduction to Costa Rica's birds. A mix of key habitats to give long lists, with comfortable lodgings and minimum travelling for maximum enjoyment.

14 nights from £3530

Here’s what our clients say about their experiences of Costa Rica with Geodyssey.

We would strongly recommend your company and travel with you again. Well run tour and had a great holiday. Thank you.