Costa Rica for the Thrill Seeker

By Briana Seftel

Hailed as one of the top ecotourism destinations in the world, Costa Rica has long been an adrenaline junkie’s dream come to life. Cascading waterfalls, steaming volcanoes, and jungle-fringed beaches are just some of the incredible landscapes that make up this small Central American country.

Put on your most comfortable pair of shoes and prepare for adventure with these ten thrilling experiences across Costa Rica’s terrain!

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Drive across Guanacaste on an ATV

An adventure on four wheels.

Speed across black sand beaches and lush rainforest on an ATV, the best way to experience the varied coastal land of Northwestern Costa Rica.

White water raft on the Pacuare River

Hold on tight!

Little known fact: Costa Rica is home to some of the world's best rivers for white water rafting. One of the most thrilling is Pacuare River, which flows approximately 67 miles to the Caribbean.

Cross a hanging bridge in Arenal

Costa Rica's tallest suspension bridges.

Suspended high above primary forest and stretching over two miles, Arenal's hanging bridges are a thrilling way to see the nature and wildlife.

Zip line through Monteverde

Soar above a cloud forest.

Zip lining may be the ultimate Costa Rica adventure activity. Consisting of a pulley suspended by a cable, zip lining is a fun activity for all ages. Fly across the treetops in Monteverde's cloud forest and see if you can spot monkeys and other wildlife that call this reserve home.

Kayak in Manuel Antonio National Park

Mangroves and canals.

Damas Island Estuary in Manuel Antonio National Park is an ideal kayaking location for its calm waters and lush vegetation. Kayak through tangled mangroves and narrow channels as you keep an eye out for monkeys and pumas.

Go horseback riding in Orosi Valley

Tour Costa Rica's coffee region.

Costa Rica's countryside is best explored on horseback. Get a taste of rural life as you pass coffee plantations and agriculture in the Orosi Valley.

Bike around Lake Arenal

Off road adventure near a volcano.

Thirty percent of Costa Rica is protected by national parks, wildlife refuges, and preserves, meaning there are plenty of places to bike. One of the most popular biking trails is the lush surroundings around Lake Arenal.

Snorkel in Puerto Viejo

See a variety of marine life on the Caribbean coast.

Puerto Viejo is widely considered the best place for snorkeling and scuba diving on Costa Rica's Caribbean coast. The warm waters are home to coral reef, small bays, inlets, and islands. Manatees, crocodiles, dolphins, and sea turtles are just a few animals that call this place home.

Surf at Witch's Rock

Ride the waves on Costa Rica's Pacific coast.

With two coastlines, Costa Rica is blessed with many surf spots for professionals and beginners. Playa Naranjo, more commonly known as Witch's Rock, is one of the top surf breaks in the country and was featured in the "Endless Summer II" film.

Hike to Rio Celeste Waterfall

A secret waterfall and bright blue lagoon.

A 45-minute hike through a scenic canopy of trees in Tenorio National Park will lead you to Rio Celeste Waterfall, one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the world! The 60-foot waterfall tumbles down into a blue lagoon that gets its intense hue from volcanic materials.


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