cities in costa rica jaco


10 CITIES IN COSTA RICA, Costa Rica is about as near to heaven as you can get, with picture-perfect beaches, lush, tropical vegetation, canopies that conceal hidden waterfalls, and volcanoes that soar over it all. Costa Rica is one of the top travel destinations for those who enjoy the outdoors and wildlife watching because more than 25% of its territory is protected by national parks and reserves.

If spotting sloths and toucans from a hanging bridge or while whizzing along a zipline doesn’t sound like an adventure, I don’t know what does. Costa Rican cities are full of rich culture and fascinating things to do. From beach town to bustling urban jungle cities, tourist-focused or Tico-typical, getting to know these charming cities in Costa Rica is fun. Each one has its own unique flavour and folklore.

One consistent feature is a beautifully designed in every Costa Rica city is a central park accompanied by a stunning cathedral and the friendliest people. No matter what city you find yourself in, it’s the gateway to so much more. Each one is surrounded by remarkable nature and limitless opportunities to explore. Costa Ricans (often called Ticos) are some of the friendliest people in the world and pura vida is their motto, something you will hear them say often. Pura vida means everything from hello, goodbye, thank you to everything is good. It’s not just a motto, it’s a way of life.

The economy was built on coffee and chocolate (I can relate), Costa Rica is one of the happiest countries in the world. There’s a local saying “Pura Vida”, which captures the lifestyle and simple joys in Costa Rica.


Arenal Volcano and Hot Springs Day Trip from Guanacaste
Liberia is one of the major cities in Costa Rica.

Liberia sits in the heart of the Guanacaste province next to Daniel Oduber International Airport.

This relaxed colonial city has all the comforts you could ask for, without being overly crowded.

You can easily sink into Tico life in Liberia.

Enjoy a meal at one of the many Costa Rican sodas that serve traditional dishes or grab a coffee and sit in Parque Mario Cañas Ruiz where many friendly locals meet.

The best part about Liberia is that it’s the perfect launchpad for exploring the extensive beauty of Guanacaste.

There is a bus station in the city centre with bus service that take you just about anywhere

Rincón de la Vieja National Park is just 16 miles (26 km) northeast of Liberia, where you can explore steaming volcanic lakes, bubbling mud pots and many misty waterfalls.

I highly recommend renting a car and heading north towards the mountains, through a tiny town called Cañas Dulces and farther on.

With cattle farms and aerial views, the scenery is breathtaking, very much ‘off the beaten path’.

Hot tip: Before heading to the city from the airport, be sure to stop at Café Europa, located right across the main road.

They have the most delectable baked goods to satisfy your need for a sweet treat.

The bus station in Liberia is at JHJ4+87H, Los Ángeles, Provincia de Guanacaste, Liberia, Costa Rica.

Café Europa is 4 km west of Daniel Oduber International Airport 21, Guanacaste Province, Liberia, 50101.

Recommended tour:

  • Arenal Volcano and Hot Springs Day Trip from Guanacaste
  • Guachipelin Adventure Volcano Zipline Horseback River Tubing Combo


Sunset Catamaran in Playa Flamingo Coco
El Coco is one of the lovely beach cities in Costa Rica.

Coco is a classic tourist beach town that is chock-full of charm and only 22 miles (35 km) from Liberia, it’s easy to access.

Shops, handcraft boutiques, an impressive selection of dining options and coffee shops fill Coco’s main street.

Gelato Heladeria El Coco serves up the best gelato and coffee in the area.

It’s so good that I regularly made the trip from Liberia to Coco to get my fix!

Coco Beach is tucked in a bay surrounded by rolling tropical mountains.

The sand is powdery soft and the beach spans 1.5 miles (2.5 km), which provides plenty of space for a stroll along the shore.

If you’re looking for adventure, take a scuba diving course or snorkelling tour here.

Coco is just one of several beaches in the area.

Playa Hermosa and Playa Panama are a few minutes north, both beaches are calm and family-friendly.

Playa Ocotal is a small beach within walking distance at just over 2 miles (3.5 km) southwest of Coco.

Playa Ocotal is absolutely one of the best snorkelling spots.

Be prepared to float with turtles, stingrays, pufferfish and an array of colourful sea life

Heladerua El Coco is at Main Boulevard In front of Santorini Guanacaste Plays del Coco, 50503.




Marlin del Rey Catamaran Snorkel Sunset Cruise from Tamarindo or Playas del Coco
Tamarindo is one of the cities in Costa Rica with lovely beaches.

Renowned for its golden beach with consistent rolling waves, Tamarindo is the ideal surfing destination.

Whether you’re an avid surfer or just getting started, Tamarindo is the place to be.

There are unlimited options for surfboard rental and lessons on every corner.

The city is bright and modern.

Boutique shops and art galleries line its bustling streets.

At night, Tamarindo comes alive with beachfront bars and live music.

There’s even an epic night market with vendors selling unique handcrafted goods and loads of freshly made local food.

Just north of Tamarindo is Playa Grande, a stunning beach twice the size of Playa Tamarindo and home to a large population of leatherback turtles If you are there at the right time, you can catch the remarkable sight of turtles nesting.

If you’re seeking a much quieter beach, not far south of Tamarindo is Playa Avellana.

It is my favourite beach in Costa Rica – vast, secluded and breathtaking.

If you’re a seashell lover, you’ll love this beach too.

Make sure to take in a sunset.

Almost all the beaches on the Pacific coast offer an unforgettable sunset experience.

Tamarindo Moonlight Night Market is at 5F plaza palmas 200m east Banco National, Guanacaste Province, Tamarindo, 50309.

Recommended tours:

  • Surf Lessons in Tamarindo, Costa Rica
  • Rio Celeste Hiking, Sloth Sanctuary and Llanos de Cortes Waterfall Tour
  • Marlin del Rey Catamaran Snorkel Sunset Cruise from Tamarindo



Nicoya is the major city of the Nicoya Peninsula and the cultural centre of Guanacaste.

It is an excellent hub for exploring the stunning peninsula that surrounds it.

Nicoya’s main attraction is Iglesia Colonial de San Blas, with its fascinating history between the indigenous Chorotega tribe and Spanish conquerors.

Built in 1644, it is one of Costa Rica’s oldest churches and is now a museum housing ancient religious artefacts.

There are many thrilling adventures located very close to Nicoya.

Barra Honda National Park is just 8.5 miles (14 km) east of the city, where you can go on an exhilarating cave tour descending 197 feet (60 m) to explore these underground wonders.

Palo Verde National Park, Tempisque Safari Refuge and Diria National Park are other great destinations within arms reach.

Iglesia Colonial de San Blas is at 4GVW+6M5, 150, Guanacaste Province, Nicoya.



Sámara is where life moves at a different pace, laid-back to the very core.

Surrounded by dense tropical greenery and an amazing coastline, the streets in between host the friendliest folks.

Sámara has a strong café culture and you’ll find many to choose from.

Never pass up a chance to sip on some delicious Costa Rican coffee. I personally loved Bohemian Café.

Along with local coffee, they have fantastic fresh, organic breakfasts worth stopping for.

Sámara Beach is long and curved, with small peaks at each end.

The wide, flat sandy shore leaves plenty of room to roam or relax and never feels crowded.

The rolling, gentle swell makes it a hot spot for learning to surf.

At the west end of the beach, a small trail over the peak leads you to natural tidal pools at Izquierda Beach.

You can even visit an aeroplane graveyard along the way.

There are a handful of breathtaking, postcard-perfect beaches all around Sámara: Playa Carrillo, Playa Camaronal and Playa Corozalito, to name a few.

Rent a scooter or ATV and take advantage of the area.

Bohemian Café is at Frente Natural Center, Guanacaste Province, Sámara.

Recommended tours:

  • Safari and Buenavista Beach Horse Riding Tour Samara
  • Samara Trails in Werner Sauter Biological Reserve

Also read:

  • 20 Landmarks In Costa Rica
  • 20 Beaches In Costa Rica
  • When Is The Best Time To Visit Costa Rica
  • Where To Stay In Costa Rica
  • 20 Costa Rica Cities



Full day Arenal Volcano, La Fortuna Waterfall and Hotsprings
La Fortuna best cities to stay in Costa Rica as a base to explore nature.

People flock from all over the world to take in the natural wonders of La Fortuna, which is right between Liberia and San José at approximately 80 miles (130 km) from each city.

Visitors mostly use La Fortuna as a home base while exploring its wild surroundings and you don’t have to go far out of town to begin seeing the area’s wonders.

The Sloth Watching Trail is just to the west of town, where you can have a peek at sloths in their natural habitat.

Continuing 3.7 miles (6 km) down that same road will lead you right to Arenal National Park.

Where there are volcanoes, there are hot springs and waterfalls.

Both of which you can find in abundance here.

La Fortuna Waterfall is particularly impressive with its 229 ft (70 m) drop and it sits at the base of two towering volcanoes that make up Arenal National Park.

Arenal Volcano is active, while Chato Volcano is dormant with a beautiful turquoise crater lake.

Join a tour and explore this park to the fullest.

The Sloth Watching Trail is at 600 east of the Central Park, La Fortuna, Alajuela Province Alajuela, La Fortuna, 21007.

Recommended tours:

  • Full day Arenal Volcano, La Fortuna Waterfall and Hotsprings
  • Balsa River White Water Rafting class 2/3


San Ramón sits 3460 feet (1050 m) above sea level in Costa Rica’s Central Valley and provides stunning views of the Nicoya Peninsula.

There is a strong sense of community in this city, with kind locals who welcome visitors.

San Ramón is also known as “the poets and presidents’ city” since five different presidents in the history of Costa Rica were born there.

Alberto Manuel Brenes Park in the city centre is a focal point for local gatherings and events.

The most remarkable feature is San Ramón Nonato Parish, which towers over the city.

The beautiful church opened in 1954 and was a momentous occasion.

Local volunteers worked for more than 20 years to replace the previous church that was destroyed by an earthquake in 1924.

The city is surrounded by luscious cloud forests like Madre Verde Nature Reserve, coffee farms and nature reserves with fewer crowds and not to be missed.

  • Alberto Manuel Brenes Park is at 3GPH+VWC, Alajuela Province, San Ramon.
  • San Ramón Nonato Parish is at C.0, Provincia de Alajuela, San Ramón, 20201.
  • Recommended tour: Zipline canopy half day adventure tour in San Ramon



Atenas is said to have the best climate in the world.

This little city located in the Central Valley is surrounded by coffee and sugar cane plantations.

It is so well-loved that it has an ever-growing expat community.

Arenas was once part of the original Oxcart Trail in the 1800s, a route used to transport coffee beans from coast to coast.

Despite Atenas being a small city, its centre is a buzzing place.

It’s famous for its regular farmer’s market where locals and ex-pats mingle over fresh, locally grown produce, baked treats and an abundance of handcrafted goods.

The rich volcanic soil in the area is perfect for growing coffee.

You can easily take a day trip to one of the many coffee farms around Atenas.

El Toledo Coffee tour is just 4 miles (7 km) northwest of the city.

You can also find the beautiful Botanical Orchid Garden 8 miles (13 km) east and many wildlife rescue reserves very close by.



Alajuela is rich in history and is one of the largest cities in Costa Rica, less than two miles (3 km) from Juan Santamaría International Airport.

It is fondly known as “The City of Mangoes” because of its many mango trees in the city centre.

There is even a mango festival every July.

As with most Costa Rican cities, Alajuela has a charming park in the centre.

General Tomas Guardia Park has been a meeting point in Alajuela since 1890 and is considered a historical heritage site.

The park is accompanied by Our Lady of the Pillar, an impressive cathedral.

This red-roofed cathedral has a gorgeous interior and is open to the public.

The Juan Santamaria Plaza is an important landmark dedicated to honouring national hero Juan Santamaria.

It serves as a symbol of patriotism and bravery.

The highlight of Alajuela is the immense farmer’s market in Plaza Ferias.

It’s one of the largest farmer’s markets in Costa Rica.

You can buy all kinds of local fruit and vegetables at great prices and also baked goods, clothes, fresh-cut flowers, trinkets and much more.

  • General Tomas Guardia Park is at 2Q8P+HFR, Alajuela Province, Alajuela.
  • Our Lady of the Pillar is at 2Q8P+MQ4, Bernardo Soto Alfaro, Provincia de Alajuela, Alajuela.
  • Juan Santamaria Plaza is at 2Q7P+WJR, Av.1, Provincia de Alajuela, Alajuela.
  • Plaza Ferias is at Av.Central Juan López del Corral, Provincia de Alajuela, Alajuela, 20101.



read also : Angkor Phokethra Golf and Spa Resort: Sofitel


Arenal Volcano Full Day Combo Tour with Lunch and Dinner San Jose Costa Rica
San Jose is one of the interesting cities to visit in Costa Rica.

San Jose is Costa Rica’s capital city, located right in the centre of the country.

With Juan Santamaría International Airport 10.8 miles (17.5 km) away, it’s the main entry point for most travellers.

Getting around this cultural hub of Costa Rica is very easy on foot.

You can see beautiful architecture, classic churches, immaculate cemeteries and many unique plazas that provide bird-watching opportunities around every block.

There are several pedestrian-only streets, like Avenida Central, which pass right through the centre and lined with many fancy shops, restaurants and cafés.

If you love museums, San Jose is for you.

This city is chock-full of amazing museums, most of which have very unique exteriors.

The National Museum of Costa Rica is a symbolic building that’s been declared an Architectural Historical Heritage site.

Even the Jade Museum, Pre-Columbian Gold Museum and Children’s Museum all have unique exteriors.

  • The National Museum of Costa Rica is at Cuesta de Moras, Av. Central, Bella Vista, San José.
  • The Jade Museum is at WWMG+7W San José, San José Province, Costa Rica.
  • The Pre-Columbian Gold Museum is on the Ground floor of the Plaza de la Cultura.
  • Central Avenue is at Calle 5 San José Centro San José CR 10104, Av. Central.
  • The Children’s Museum is at WWR9+GR4, Av 9, Bajos de La Union, San José.






Check Also


ADVERTISEMENT BEST TRIP-DAY IN SAN FRANCISCO It’s a great shame that most people who travel …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *