Should I Visit Costa Rica? Here Are 6 Reasons to Travel To Costa Rica This Summer!

Costa Rica is a beautiful country, filled with gorgeous landscapes, unique wildlife, and friendly people, putting it at the top of the bucket-list destination for many world travelers.

Do you find yourself wondering “Should I visit Costa Rica this summer or wait and travel somewhere else first?” Costa Rica is a beautiful country, filled with gorgeous landscapes, unique wildlife, and friendly people, putting it at the top of the bucket-list destination for many world travelers. There is no reason to put it off, here are 6 reasons why you should visit Costa Rica as soon as possible:

Stunning Landscapes. World-class black sand beaches, check. Volcanically-heated hot springs, check. Lush tropical rainforests, check. These are just a few of the exotic local environments that can be found around Costa Rica! Visit the endless beaches of the Pacific coast, and practice your surfing skills at some of the world’s best surfing spots like Playa Hermosa, Malpais, or Boca Brava. Hike up one of Costa Rica’s six active volcanoes, such as Arenal volcano, then soak your feet (or entire body) in a relaxing natural hot spring. Or you could visit the verdant, misty cloud forests of the Monteverde (“Green Mountain”) Reserve, one of Costa Rica’s seven wonders.

Biodiversity & Eco-Friendly. Costa Rica is about the size of the state of West Virginia, but it holds nearly 6% of the world’s biodiversity! It’s the hummingbird capital of the world (with over 50 different species of the tiny avians), has more than 10% of the world’s butterflies, and hosts nearly 500 different types of orchids! Other unique wildlife students can watch for include sloths, ocelots, quetzals, monkeys, toucans, jaguars, and sea turtles. The Costa Rican citizens take pride in their country’s natural resources and actively work to protect them. One-quarter of the entire land area is protected as national parks and preserves. Costa Rica uses 99.2% renewable energy and has made it their goal to be a completely carbon-neutral nation by 2021–faster than any other country in the world!

Delicious Food. Costa Rica’s culinary scene can often be overshadowed by all the beautiful scenery. But make no mistake, this small country offers up a large number of delicious dishes for travelers of all tastes! Local diners, called sodas, create home-cooked meals bursting with local flavors, including gallo pinto rice-and-beans (the national dish of Costa Rica), seafood ceviche, or slightly-spicy tamales, all usually served with a side of fried plantains. Finish your meal with tres leches cake, a rich and sweet dessert made with three different kinds of milk and cream, or any of the fresh tropical fruits available at any roadside fruit stand. Coffee drinkers can enjoy some of the world’s best coffee, sustainably grown in the local Costa Rica mountain highlands.

Friendly People, Unique Culture. Delicious food and amazing landscapes must have a positive impact, since Costa Rica is consistently ranked as one of the happiest countries and most satisfying places to live! Its residents also have one of the highest life expectancies on the planet. The Nicoya Peninsula is one of just five Blue Zones in the entire world, where people live longer, happier, and healthier than anywhere else. The unofficial slogan of Costa Rica is Pura vida! or “Pure life”, often shared as a greeting, farewell, or just to say everything’s great! Maybe it’s all that delicious local coffee they get to drink?

Unique Volunteer Opportunities. Maybe your student is looking for a summer with a little more substance. Costa Rica has a number of local organizations that offer unique volunteer and community service projects for middle and high school students! Help build a nursery to protect sea turtle hatchlings, or engage with rescued monkeys, sloths, and parrots at a local wildlife rehab center. Teach English lessons with local elementary students, or work alongside local community members in remote villages to help with essential building projects. There’s plenty of ways to get involved and make your trip even more memorable!

Adventure Galore! Costa Rica is a great place to relax and unwind, but it’s also full of adrenaline-pumping activities! There’s the phenomenal surfing on both the Pacific and Caribbean coasts, but if you’re looking for some fresh water, take a guided raft trip through Class III and IV rapids on the Rio Pacuare, ranked by National Geographic as one of the “Top 10 White-Water Rafting” experiences in the World. Strap on a harness and zipline over and through lush rainforest canopies, or hike to a hidden waterfall deep in the jungle. Costa Rica is truly a country that offers something for students of all ages!

So, should you travel to Costa Rica this summer? In short, yes! We hope this list stoked the fire of wanderlust. If so,  ARCC has three unique Costa Rica summer programs for middle school and high school students to cure your yearning for adventure: The 2-week Costa Rica: Classic Service Adventure for students in 7th grade and up, The 3-week Costa Rica: Ultimate volunteer program for students in 8th grade and up, and the 2-week animal service program Costa Rica: Wildlife Conservation for high school students.


ARCC Programs has offered summer travel programs for teens for over 35 years. With travel programs for teens on six continents, there is something for everyone. Find a summer program on our website or request a catalog today.