Almost 30% of Costa Rica’s land is protected for conservation, so you’ll see a lot of forests and jungles that reach all the way to the beach. The coastline is stunning because in Costa Rica, by law you cannot touch the first fifty meters inland from the highest tide, so that means when you step on most beaches, the view is not disturbed by buildings, and all you can see is forest!
Not all beaches will be like this, since the law didn’t come into effect on time to prevent development in most areas of Guanacaste and Puntarenas, but still you can find lots of seemingly untouched beaches. Inland the country is layered with forested mountains, valleys and rivers, and weather can change quickly from very hot and humid in Jacó to cold enough to set up a fireplace in the could forest of El Cerro de la Muerte (Death Hill).
You can find deciduous forests that go completely brown in the dry season in Guanacaste, and evergreen jungles in the south Osa Peninsula. You’ll find strong waves and currents on the Pacific side and snorkeling waters in the Caribbean.
From sea level to a peak of 12,530 feet (3,819 meters), from hot to cold, from the roaring natural river of Pacuare to the enormous man-made lake of the Arenal, Costa Rica has it all.