Where is the party?
Costa Rica nightlife caters to a mix of tourists, college students, and locals. San José, Costa Rica’s nightlife is located in the largest urban center offering the liveliest scene due to its central location. In the early evening hours, Costa Rica Monkey Tours recommends several museums and galleries we believe are worth visiting as well as a generous list of theaters, concerts, and other cultural events you won’t find elsewhere. The nocturnal options are endless for visitors and residents alike, and we’ll help you choose from plenty of interesting clubs and bars, and some very lively discos and dance clubs.
The Costa Rica San José nightlife may appear a bit chaotic at first with maneuvering traffic, dated buses, dilapidated buildings, and bustling people. Even at night, the central downtown section of the city exists in a constant state of gridlock.
Dance the Night Away
Nightlife in San José, Costa Rica is teeming with dance clubs, and most evenings the city’s dance floors are packed to overflowing. Lounge lizards will be happy in most hotel bars downtown, while students and the young at heart will have no problem mixing in at the livelier spots. Choose between an old-school salsa dance hall with a live band, or a more contemporary club blasting the latest electronica.
Be on the lookout for something called a “boca,” better known to northerners as “tapa.” After a night on the town, those little dishes of snacks that arrive at your table when you order a drink are a wonderful way to taste the culture, and Costa Rica Monkey Tours will ensure you visit the best and most hospitable locations. This tradition is especially popular in the older, more traditional San José drinking establishments, or “cantinas.” You’ll find drinks reasonably priced, with beer costing around $2 to $3 a bottle, and mixed drinks costing $4 to $10.
Costa Rica nightlife for the gay and lesbian communities are rather discreet, but alive and well, though the club scene is not well publicized. The most established and happening gay and lesbian bars and dance club in San José are La Avispa, Pucho’s Bar, El Bochinche
Casinos & Gambling
Gambling is legal as part of the Costa Rica nightlife, with casinos at virtually every major hotel. If blackjack is your game, you’ll want to play “rummy.” The rules are almost identical, except that the house pays double on blackjack, any three of a kind, and a three-card straight flush. Most casinos are chock full of electronic slots and poker machines, along with the usual table games of roulette and no-limit hold’em poker, but don’t offer craps or baccarat. The dress is usually casual, though you may have to dress up slightly at some of the fancier hotels.