Costa Rica is Central America’s premier tourist spot and one of the world’s leading eco-tourism destinations. Despite its modest size – its smaller than West Virginia – it’s one of the most biodiverse nations in the world, with about one quarter of the country comprised of conservation and natural protected areas. The capital, San José, has some interesting museums, galleries and restaurants. But Costa Rica is a place where nature far outshines any man-made creations and understandably, most visitors quickly flee the urban center for its national parks, where landscapes come in every imaginable form. There are rushing rivers, grumbling volcanoes, tumbling waterfalls, misty cloud forest, rainforests that contain a gazillion shades of green and dreamy deserted beaches. For many, it’s simply heaven.

Located near Uvita on the Costa Rica’s Pacific coast, Kura Design Villas are a sleek and minimalist getaway. Sustainable touches, including solar-powered LED lighting and a greenhouse sprouting herbs and greens, are seamlessly integrated into the pared-back décor, which blends traditional elements like tribal masks, with glossy glass, teak and steel. Guests can lounge around the L-shaped infinity pool, which looks out over the Pacific Ocean, or hang out at the sky lounge, where the panorama includes gorgeous jungle and ocean vistas and indulge in treatments at the spa.


For scores of us, the first interaction of the day is with a barista. But as you sip on the steaming beverage from a paper cup, you probably give little thought to where it came from. Costa Rica, one of the top coffee-producing regions in the world, is as good a place as any to find out. Take a tour of the Doka Estate coffee plantation, which sits in the shadow of the Poás Volcano. Learn more about seed-to-cup production and the important economic and social role that coffee plays in Costa Rica, before enjoying a seriously fresh cup of Joe.



Costa Rica is home to more than 500,000 species, about four percent of all plant and wildlife species on Earth. It’s astoundingly diverse and shockingly colorful – there are blood red frogs, friendly-faced sloths, toucans with bright oversized bills, as well as a variety of occasionally cheeky monkeys. To see the wildlife in a way that you can be sure won’t infringe upon them or their habitat, take an eye-opening tour through with the Jaguar Rescue Foundation, who are dedicated to rehabilitating animals and conserving Puerto Viejo’s animal kingdom.


Costa Rica’s most famous volcano, Arenal, got a name for itself after a devastating explosion in 1968 that destroyed the little town of La Fortuna de San Carlos. For the next 42 years, the Arenal volcano continued hissing and grumbling, and tourists arrived in their droves to witness its smoking crater and glow-in-the-dark lava spews. Since 2010, Arenal has gone quiet. But even though the volcanic activity has subsided, the perfectly symmetrical cone and surrounding Arenal Volcano National Park is definitely worth seeing. There are hot springs and clear lakes to bathe in, an abundance of hiking routes and all kinds of high-octane outdoor activities, such as zip-lining and mountain biking.


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