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Make your way to San José! From total tropics to the urban jungle, Costa Rica’s capital serves up true Tico culture with all-day markets and non-stop nightlife. In San José, you're always a short jaunt away from breathtaking beaches, misty cloud forests and volcanic views. This is where your Costa Rican adventure begins, before delving into the endless possibilities of a land draped in greenery.

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Visit San José: get started

Start your Costa Rica trip in San José! Admire colonial architecture and visit the best restaurants in San José. Find tours of Monteverde Cloud Forest, Marino Ballena National Park or the Arenal Volcano and other nearby natural wonders. Check out our selection of San José hotels and packages for the perfect vacation.

SAN JOSÉ TRAVEL GUIDE

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DESTINATION FACTS

Language

Spanish

What to eat

Chifrijos (fried pork, rice and beans, tomato-based salad), sopa de pejibaye (palm fruit soup) or sopa negra (black bean soup), rondón (coconut milk-based fish stew) and tres leches cake for dessert.

What to bring back

The staple Lizano sauce (their version of Worcestershire), gorgeous, often animal-shaped Boruca masks and other handmade indigenous crafts found at places like Chíeton Morén, a gallery dedicated to Costa Rica’s indigenous arts.

Fun Fact

The city was built around a chapel in 1736 and named after its chosen patron saint, Saint Joseph of Nazareth. It wasn’t the original capital of Costa Rica—until 1823, that was Cartago in the south, changing not long after Costa Rica gained its independence from Spain in 1821. Costa Ricans (Ticos) celebrate the occasion in San José every September 15!

Important Info

For more information on all necessary travel documents, visa, taxes and more, check Air Canada’s Travel Requirements page and the Government of Canada’s Travel and Tourism website.
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5 REASONS TO TRAVEL TO COSTA RICA
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WHAT TO DO IN COSTA RICA
Costa Rica Tours
EXPLORE WITH COSTA RICA TOURS

The best way to explore this fantastic Central American country? Our exciting, perfectly-tailored tour packages! Browse our itineraries below and call us to book at 1-866 529-2079.

Costa Rica National Parks and Beach Tour

A 14-night tour including: Rincon de la Vieja, Arenal Volcano, Manuel Antonio National Park, Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve and Tamarindo beach. See full details.

Welcome to the Rainforest

A 7-night tour including: Tortuguero National Park, Arenal Volcano and Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. See full details.

Taste of Costa Rica

A 7-night tour including: the coffee plantations of the Naranjo region, Arenal Volcano and Manuel Antonio National Park. See full details.

Caribbean to Pacific Tour

A 14-night tour including: Puerto Viejo Limon, Tortuguero National Park, Arenal Volcano, Tamarindo Beach, Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve and Manuel Antonio National Park. See full details.

Costa Rica Eco Adventure Tour

A 7-night tour including: Arenal Volcano, Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve and Tamarindo Beach. See full details.

Discover Costa Rica: Fly & Drive

A 7-night tour including: Celeste River, Arenal Volcano, Rancho Humo, Carrillo Beach and the Guanacaste region. See full details.

Exploring Costa Rica: Fly & Drive

A 7-night tour including: San Gerardo de Dota, Ballena Bay and Poas Volcano.  See full details.