Costa Rica is a small country with a very diverse weather throughout the year. The high elevation areas are cold, the cloud forest is misty and cool, the Central Valley experiences spring, and both the Caribbean and Pacific coasts are sizzling hot all year round.
The best time to visit Costa Rica is during the summer, which is the country’s dry season from December through April. However, foreigners should not be surprised if there will be little rain during these times. Schools are closed from December to February, whereas the beach towns are busy. Hotels and inns are usually packed during Semana Santa, or Holy Week.
The wet season begins in May throughout, and the locals call this time of the year as the “green season”. When you decide to travel to Costa Rica at these early months of the year, you will probably get some rain showers. However, there will be fewer crowds and you will be able to look for hotel accommodations with cheap rates easier because it is off-peak season. The rainiest month of the year is October, especially on the Pacific side. There are usually afternoon – night time rains, or several cloudy days and drizzle and rain. The rivers start to puff out, and roads get all muddy and dirty, which will make your travel trickier. Though there will surely be enough sun for you to enjoy and get your Costa Rican tan!
Some Costa Rican towns are expected to raise their costs during the northern summer holidays on the months of June and July, because of the great numbers of North American and European tourists. Anticipate paying high-season prices at these months of the year.
Surfing travel seasons vary slightly at some extent. The Pacific coast has huge and fast waves during the rainy season, especially on the months of June throughout September and October. On the other hand, the Caribbean side offers better waves during November all the way to May.
Wildlife enthusiasts should take note of the seasons of the critters. Anyone can enjoy the turtle season on the Caribbean side during late-February to October. It is the peak season for the leatherback during April and May, and the green turtles in August and September.
Vacationers will definitely enjoy watching the birds any time of the year. Although it is known that the best time to spot wonderful ones from November all the way to April. Watching migratory flocks are best during March to May, and during September to November.
Fishing is also available throughout the entire year. Anglers are abundant on the Caribbean coast between January and May, while during the months of September through November is the period for Snook. Sailfish are most accessible between November and May on the Pacific coast and Golfo Dulce.
It has always been reported that the Caribbean side of Costa Rica experiences rainfall all the time, when in fact this is only true to one of the microclimates along the long seacoast and the rest is already sunny and dry. It is true that this side of the country gets more rain most of the time. However, when it does rain here, it is warm, tropical rain.