Find cheap flights to Costa Rica with TravelSupermarket and draw up a lip-smacking itinerary exploring coast, mountain, forest and city...
Located on the ribbon of earth that connects Mexico with South America, Costa Rica is an immensely friendly nation that has been attracting tourists with an interest in ecology for many years. Its biodiversity and the nation's kindness to the environment consistently sees Costa Rica ranking as one of the “greenest” countries in the world.
However, you don't have to be a scientist to appreciate the flora and fauna of this rich landscape. Just keep your eyes open as you tour the country: a capuchin here, a sloth there, a toucan here, a tree frog there. Oh, and you can't miss the volcanoes, waterfalls and forest canopies in the clouds - Mother Nature really went to town in Costa Rica.
The narrow shape of Costa Rica makes it easy to add a little variety to your holiday. You can cross from east coast to west coast, or vice versa, in around five hours - hiking in the mountains of a morning and resting those legs on the beach in the afternoon. The surf is legendary here too, especially on the Pacific Ocean coast, while all over Costa Rica you can get to grips with adrenaline-inducing extreme sports.
For a holiday in a natural beauty spot, where the cool vibes of the Caribbean meet the unique flavours of Central America, you can't go wrong when you book a flight to Costa Rica.
The cheapest flights to Costa Rica are generally found during the wetter months between May and November. The rainfall can't dampen temperatures, though, with average daytime highs of 25C. Between December and April it is generally drier and hotter. Regional variations apply because of the nation's position between the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, while high-altitude destinations will obviously be cooler than anywhere else.
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There are no direct flights to Costa Rica from the UK; you'll need to take a connecting flight, probably via Europe or North America...
The most direct route to Costa Rica from the UK is to fly from London Heathrow or Manchester via Madrid with Iberia. The total flight time is around 14 hours.
An alternative to this European route is to fly with various American and Canadian carriers and make a connection in a North American city. American Airlines flies to Costa Rica via New York, Delta via Atlanta, United via New York or Chicago and Air Canada via Toronto.
Several of these carriers depart the UK from Manchester, Birmingham and Edinburgh, as well as London Heathrow.
Most UK travellers on Costa Rica flights will touch down at Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO), which serves the capital city of San José.
Find out about the options for travelling between San José's airports and holiday destinations throughout Costa Rica...
Buses run every five minutes from stops a short distance from the arrivals hall at Juan Santamaria to San José and other destinations.
Orange coloured Taxis Unidos, the airport's official cab company, are also available around the clock. If you are booking car hire in San José, you can collect your vehicle at the airport.
From San José you can also connect to regional flights - a convenient way to get around the country.
In general, taxis and mini-buses are in plentiful supply in Costa Rica, especially in the cities. In a taxi, agree a price or make sure that the meter is switched on before you travel.
Public transport is cheap and efficient, and all main towns and holiday destinations are served by bus routes. If you are being careful with your budget, taking the bus (though the journey is sometimes slow) is the best option.
If driving, be aware that Costa Rica has a high rate of traffic accidents. Be sure to have comprehensive travel insurance and check for any damage to a vehicle when you first hire it.
From a beach-side room to an eco-lodge in the trees, Costa Rica dishes up a tempting menu of accommodation choices...
The tourism boom of recent years has led to the development of a swathe of thoughtful and chic accommodation around Costa Rica. You can unpack your tropical wardrobe in a luxurious lodge in the rainforest or get out your best beach togs by the sea.
Stay in the capital, San José, for a taste of Costa Rica's buzzing urban life. Here museums and cafés welcome tourists and there's a great selection of hotels. You needn't sacrifice nature jaunts in the city, either - day tours depart regularly for the nearby waterfalls, volcanoes, coffee plantations and rainforests.
Montezuma, famed for its incredible surfing, is one of the most popular seaside spots in Costa Rica. Hotels in this well-established tourist area range from the old, well-worn and cheap, to sumptuous, modern resort-style places. The west-coast resorts of Tamarindo, Jaco, Playa Hermosa, and Quepos are also popular.
On the less developed east coast, you'll discover small beach towns such as Puerto Viejo, the best surf spot on the country's Caribbean coast.
Once you've booked your flights to Costa Rica, compare hotel deals by using the search tool on TravelSupermarket.