Best time to visit Costa Rica

Happily, the best weather coincides with Christmas, new Year, spring half term and the worst of the northern winters.
Despite its skimpy scale, Costa Rica's mountains, rainforests, cloud forests and Pacific and Caribbean coasts mean that temperatures and rainfall vary wildly. Late December to April is driest and sunniest and the northern Pacific experiences less rain, but this is still rainforest: bring waterproofs and quick drying clothes regardless of the season. San José and the Central Valley are springlike year-round, while high peaks experience frost. The cool cloud forests provide respite from the lowland heat – plus the relentless bugs.

Costa Rica Weather Chart

 
MIN °C
MAX °C
RAIN (mm)
JAN
23
32
3
FEB
23
33
2
MAR
23
33
6
APR
24
33
33
MAY
24
32
233
JUN
23
31
286
JUL
23
31
185
AUG
23
31
255
SEP
23
30
356
OCT
23
31
362
NOV
23
31
119
DEC
22
31
13

Costa Rica, month by month

The start of the year, in January and February, is considered one of the best times to go to Costa Rica, however be aware that the lack of rain will attract more crowds and higher prices so don’t think that you’re going to get things all your own way. March and April are still relatively dry months but getting into May and June you’ll find afternoon and evening rainstorms are becoming more frequent which, to be honest, is no bad thing. July and August continue in the same vein weather-wise but will also attract a few more families thanks to Europeans and North Americans breaking up for the summer holidays. If you do come at this time, the Pacific coast will be slightly drier than the Caribbean. This is also the start of peak turtle nesting season in Tortuguero – it continues right through to October. The majority of Costa Rica’s rain will fall in September and October with rivers swelling and rural areas, including the Osa Peninsula, shutting down completely due to impassable roads and fallen trees. November will still find a few mild showers but as the year draws to a close you’ll find the dry season starting in earnest during December with an abundance of gorgeous green foliage to match the ever exciting animal encounters.
PLAY

Our top Costa Rica Holiday

Costa Rica wildlife holiday

Costa Rica wildlife holiday

An amazing variety of Costa Rican wildlife

From £3069 to £3999 16 days inc UK flights
Small group travel:
2020: 3 Nov, 14 Nov, 19 Nov, 21 Nov, 24 Nov, 28 Nov, 19 Dec, 22 Dec
2021: 2 Jan, 5 Jan, 19 Jan, 21 Jan, 28 Jan, 2 Feb, 4 Feb, 9 Feb, 11 Feb, 13 Feb, 20 Feb, 25 Feb, 27 Feb, 2 Mar, 6 Mar, 13 Mar, 16 Mar, 20 Mar, 23 Mar, 25 Mar, 3 Apr, 14 Apr, 17 Apr, 21 Apr, 24 Apr, 1 May, 15 May, 10 Jul, 24 Jul, 31 Jul, 7 Aug, 14 Aug, 21 Aug, 28 Aug, 11 Sep, 25 Sep, 2 Oct, 9 Oct, 16 Oct, 23 Oct, 30 Oct, 2 Nov, 4 Nov, 6 Nov, 9 Nov, 11 Nov ...
Travel Team
If you'd like to chat about Costa Rica or need help finding a holiday to suit you we're very happy to help.

Responsible Travel recommends

David Orrock, from our Latin America specialists Pura Aventura, shares his advice on the best time to visit Costa Rica: “It’s hard to advise when to go because one of the things that makes Costa Rica so amazing is the insane amount of microclimates and ecosystems. I wouldn’t advise someone not to go in the rainy season – because that covers seven months of the year! It’s known as the “green season” so you’ll see some rain but being a tropical country there’s always that chance in Costa Rica anyway. We take families in July and August but we don’t hear that they’ve had any issues.”
Tenille Moore, from our small group holiday experts Geodyssey, shares her advice on the best time to visit Costa Rica: “The best place for beach is the north Pacific side, as that’s the driest part of the country. So if you’re there in July or August, that’s the place to go. There are microclimates around the southern Caribbean. It can be quite wet at that time of year, but not in October, for example. For a small country it’s quite variable!”
Written by Vicki Brown
Photo credits: [Page banner: Jay Iwasaki] [Top box: Trish Hartmann] [RT recommends: Fran Devinney]
Convert currencies