We all could use a little bit of Costa Rica in our lives right now…. If you’ve stumbled upon our post here, then we sure hope you’re heading off soon. If that’s the case then— lucky you!

Costa Rica is a gorgeous Central American country that has coastlines on both the Caribbean and the Pacific Ocean. When you think of it, you probably draw images to mind of luscious rainforests, pristine beaches, and epic volcanoes. That’s right!

When staying in Costa Rica, expect a perfect blend of relaxation and adventure. What is not quite as fun as hiking a volcano or hanging out with monkeys, is figuring out where to stay in Costa Rica. With so many incredible places and so many choices of lodging in Costa Rica, it can be a headache trying to decide where to stay and where to go!

So we called in our travel experts and created this wicked guide of all the best areas to stay. Wondering where should I stay in Costa Rica? Then, read on readers! The answers to all your questions are below!

Stay. Hang out a while.

Where to Stay in Costa Rica

Backpacking Costa Rica can be a real blast. But only if you know where to stay. Doing some research before you start your trip can really pay off. To help you out a bit, check out the following epic places to stay in Costa Rica.

With so many incredible places to stay in Costa Rica, it’s hard to narrow it down to just three top places to stay! That being said, we’re sure that you will love these astounding options in the best cities to stay in Costa Rica!

Best Airbnb in Costa Rica – Kapetsowa Container Loft

Kapetsowa Container Loft

This Airbnb in Costa Rica looks like it is straight out of a magazine! It is a truly unique Airbnb that offers guests an unforgettable experience. You’ll be in a glass-box loft perched over the mountainside. With an incredible amount of privacy, you’ll be able to soak up the gorgeous views of Monteverde every single second of the day!

Best Hostel in Costa Rica – Luz en El Cielo Eco Hostel

Luz en El Cielo Eco Hostel

This is no ordinary hostel! Luz en el Cielo is your home away from home in the jungle. Expect a peaceful stay in a classy hostel that has lots of beautiful eco touches. Complimentary local breakfast is included in the price of a room or a dorm bed. It’s no ordinary breakfast either! It’s a bio-organic breakfast that includes incredible from small, local farms. How awesome is that?!

Best Hotel in Costa Rica – Hotel Terraza del Pacifico

Hotel Terraza del Pacifico

Hotel Terraza del Pacifico is a beachfront hotel in Jacó. It’s a beautiful hotel that has two large outdoor pools with plenty of sunbeds. It’s a tiny bit outside of the city centre of Jacó, but it is indeed located right on the beachfront of Playa Hermosa Beach! And nearly all of the rooms have sea views! From the pools to the gardens to the delectable breakfast overlooking the sea, you’re sure to have an incredible stay at this hotel! Plus, there are lots of different sized rooms to choose from, from more affordable standard rooms to private villas!

Costa Rica Neighbourhood Guide

OVERALL
Tamarindo Costa Rica
OVERALL

Tamarindo

Tamarindo is an incredible Costa Rican beach town that is packed with all that you could love about Costa Rica! Situated in the Guanacaste Province, on Costa Rica’s Pacific coast, Tamarindo has plenty of incredible places to offer. It has beautiful beaches, a wild nightlife, and is actually a huge hub for surfers.

FOR FAMILIES
Best Place to Stay in Costa Rica For Families
FOR FAMILIES

Drake Bay

This is a remote village, not a crazy tourist hub and therefore one of the safest areas in Costa Rica. That means that you and your family won’t be fighting for a place to put your beach towel down! The main beach of Drake Bay is called Playa Colorada, which has a handful of restaurants and warm, peaceful water!

FOR COUPLES
Most Romantic Place to Stay in Costa Rica for Couples
FOR COUPLES

Puerto Viejo

When trying to choose the most romantic place to stay in Costa Rica, I sure had my job cut out for me. There are so many romantic towns and beaches in Costa Rica that positively make me swoon! However, Puerto Viejo stole my heart and I’m sure you can see why!

COOLEST
Coolest Place to Stay in Costa Rica
COOLEST

Monteverde

Monteverde is a little bit of a tourist hotspot, so be aware that this small misty town is filled with lots of foreign visitors too! Don’t let that deter you, because there are so many things to do in Monteverde that you absolutely need to check off your Costa Rica bucket list! From flying down a zip-line course to trekking in a forest canopy to horse riding, there are lots of different ways to explore the cloud forests.

ON A BUDGET
Where to Stay in Costa Rica on a Budget
ON A BUDGET

San José

Since the capital city sits right in the middle, consider San José your central hub— the perfect spot to explore all the other top places to stay in Costa Rica! San José shouldn’t be overlooked, especially by backpackers, you’ll find some of the best budget hotels and hostels here.

UNIQUE
One of the Most Unique Places to Stay in Costa Rica
UNIQUE

Montezuma

Montezuma sits on the southern shore of Costa Rica on the Nicoya Peninsula. This beach town is renowned for an incredibly long stretch of soft, white sand beach simply called Playa Montezuma right on the Pacific Ocean.

FOR ADVENTURE
Where to Stay in Costa Rica for Adventure
FOR ADVENTURE

Arenal Volcano

Arenal Volcano is the backdrop of the town of Fortuna. It’s a cute, charming, little town that is only a few streets wide with just a handful of restaurants and shops. Fortuna is the best launching spot for the rest of your adventures!

ON THE BEACH
Where to Stay in Costa Rica on the Beach
ON THE BEACH

Jacó

Located on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, just southwest of San José, Jacó is known for its epic surfing spots and raucous nightlife!

Ahh, Costa Rica. It kinda needs no introduction really but I’m obliged to right one! If you’re here you already know that this small country has endless amounts to offer, but where the hell to stay!

This incredible country in Central America is a nature lovers’ paradise. With beautiful beaches, dense jungles like the Monteverde cloud forest and even relaxing hot springs. There’s a lot to plan when you’re considering a visit, and whereabouts to stay is one of the most important.

Tamarindo: This is the Costa Rica you’ve come to explore. It’s set right next to some amazing beaches and is super close to an amazing jungle-lined national park. It’s not only the perfect spot for nature lovers but there’s plenty of great nightlife too.

Drake Bay: Drake Bay, also called Bahía Drake, sits on the coast in southwest Costa Rica. This is hands down the best city in Costa Rica to visit when travelling with your family!

Puerto Viejo: Puerto Viejo de Talamanca sits in the southeast of Costa Rica. It’s right on the gorgeous Caribbean coast and is renowned for its black sand beach, and epic surf break at Salsa Brava!

Monteverde: Monteverde is a small town in Puntarenas, snuggled in nice and tight in the Cordillera de Tilaran mountain range. World-renowned for its cloud forests, when staying in Costa Rica staying in Monteverde is a must!

San José: As the capital city of Costa Rica, San José, is packed with history. Curiously enough, it sits nearly smack-dab in the middle of the country and is also the largest city in the country.

Montezuma: This area of the country is well known for its beautiful beaches, incredible surf and some of the country’s best walking trails. It’s kinda like a mini Costa Rica all in one easy-to-navigate spot.

Arenal Volcano: With a name like Arenal Volcano, it sure does sound like the place to stay in Costa Rica for adventure, right?! If you’re looking to explore Costa Rica’s wild side then this is the perfect spot, the national park here is one of the most incredible in the country.

Jacó: As Costa Rica’s most visited beach, you simply can’t miss out on staying in Jacó! This awesome beach town is known for its surfing as well as its many national parks, hiking, fishing and wild nightlife.

Now that you’ve got an overview let’s get into the specifics to see which areas work best for your trip.

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5 Best Neighborhoods to Stay in Costa Rica

It’s time to detail a more detailed look at the five best neighbourhoods to stay in Costa Rica! Each is a little different than the last so be sure to pick the area of the country that’s the right fit for you and your travel style!

1. Tamarindo – Overall Best Place to Stay in Costa Rica

Tamarindo is an incredible Costa Rican beach town that is packed with all that you could love about Costa Rica! Situated in the Guanacaste Province, on Costa Rica’s Pacific coast, Tamarindo has plenty of incredible places to offer. It has beautiful beaches, a wild nightlife, and is actually a huge hub for surfers.

What’s more, is that Tamarindo is sandwiched right in between two national parks! That means that there are plentiful mountains and nature right at your fingertips, or should I say right around the next bend of the road!

When staying in Tamarindo, arguably the best city in Costa Rica, you’re going to want to stay as close to the beach as possible! It doesn’t matter which beach, as long as you’re close to the shore you are sure to have a blast!

Tamarindo Costa Rica

Best Airbnb in Tamarindo: Casa de Arroz

Casa de Arroz

Rent this darling studio apartment for a steal! You’ll be just three blocks from the beach and one block from the nightlife! This is the absolute perfect spot for your Costa Rica vacation. This Airbnb’s yard is also known to be home to iguanas, hummingbirds, and even the occasional monkey! The apartment has a fully equipped kitchen, cosy couches, and plenty of space to move around.

Best Hostel in Tamarindo: Tamarindo Backpackers

Tamarindo Backpackers

At this delightful boutique surf hostel, you’ll be staying in style. Relax in the jacuzzi pool, or curl up with a good book in a sun chair and you’ll feel right at home. The hostel has its own private surf instructor and plenty of surfboards to rent. You’ll be staying just a three-minute walk from one of the absolute best-surfing beaches in all of Costa Rica! Surfs up, friends! There are some great hostels in Tamarindo but this is right up there.

Best Hotel in Tamarindo: Surf Ranch Tamarindo

Surf Ranch Tamarindo

With a name like Surf Ranch Tamarindo, your stomach might drop in fear of sky-high prices. Never fear! The Surf Ranch Tamarindo offers reasonably priced rooms, plus a huge— and free— continental breakfast! And best of all, you’ll be sitting right opposite Grande Beach!

Things to See and Do in Tamarindo

  • Spend the day relaxing on Playa Tamarindo (Tamarindo Beach) one of Costa Rica’s most incredible white sandy beaches.
  • If you want a bit more action, check out the nearby Playa Negra, Playa Grande and Avellanas beaches, some of the country’s best surfing beaches.
  • Take a sunset cruise along the Pacific Coast, a perfect way to end the day.
  • Go on a kayaking or SUP adventure through the mangrove ecosystem of the Tamarindo Estuary.
  • Head out onto the Pacific Ocean on a scuba diving or snorkelling trip, many of which stop at the stunning Catalinas Islands and Bat Islands.
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2. Drake Bay – Best Place to Stay in Costa Rica For Families

This is a remote village, not a crazy tourist hub and therefore one of the safest areas in Costa Rica. That means that you and your family won’t be fighting for a place to put your beach towel down! The main beach of Drake Bay is called Playa Colorada, which has a handful of restaurants and warm, peaceful water!

Keeping in mind that Drake Bay is a remote coastal city, lodging is sparse. That definitely means that you’ll have plenty of privacy and won’t have to fight the crowds. Book well in advance to make sure you get the right accommodation choice for you and your family.

Best Place to Stay in Costa Rica For Families

Best Airbnb in Drake Bay: Pacheco Tours

Pacheco Tours

With three beds and a private bathroom, this personal cabin perched on a hill overlooking Drake Bay is a beach house in Costa Rica that makes dreams come true for you and your family. You’ll be just a 200-metre walk down to the ocean and will love sitting out on the balcony watching the views below. You might even spot a macaw or two! Plus, you’ll be just a few minutes’ walk from a few little restaurants and eateries so you definitely won’t feel like you’re in the middle of nowhere!

Best Guest House in Drake Bay: Cabina Sun Shine

Cabina Sun Shine

For bargain-basement prices, you and your family will have a family room with a sea view. There will be two beds and a sofa bed available, plus breakfast is included for the whole family! Bask in the magnificent sea views and the unforgettable sunset views right off of your front porch. The staff will pick you up and drop you off at the harbour and are happy to take you to all the pick-up points for excursions. There is also a restaurant on-site with great food and cocktails,

Best Hotel in Drake Bay: Hotel El Congo

Hotel El Congo

Hotel El Congo is located just a few steps away from Colorada and has a top-notch on-site restaurant. This hotel is known for its spacious family rooms that come with all the bells and whistles, from air conditioning to in-room refrigerators! There is also a supermarket just across the street if you need to pick up any sundry items on your hikes around the nearby Corcovado National Park. It’s one of our favourite Costa Rica hotels!

Things to See and Do in Drake Bay

  • The kids will love getting to and from Drake Bay, as the best option to get to Drake Bay is actually to take a boat taxi from Sierpe. The hour-long boat ride such great fun!
  • Don’t miss out on exploring Corcovado National Park where you can see all four of the monkey species that are native to Costa Rica, as well as the huge Baird’s Tapir!
  • There is also great snorkelling and scuba diving available from the shores of Drake Bay, where you can see gorgeous coral reefs and brightly coloured schools of fish!
  • Hike Drake’s Trail which follows the Pacific coast from Drake Bay to Playa Rincon de San Josecito, here are some of Costa Rica’s easiest to access rainforests.
  • Head out on a nighttime wildlife adventure, lots of the native creatures in the area is nocturnal, like snakes, frogs and other reptiles. This is a great way to spot them.

3. Puerto Viejo – Most Romantic Place to Stay in Costa Rica for Couples

When trying to choose the most romantic place to stay in Costa Rica, I sure had my job cut out for me. There are so many romantic towns and beaches in Costa Rica that positively make me swoon! However, Puerto Viejo stole my heart and I’m sure you can see why!

There are abundant rainforests and mangroves in the area as well as the famous black sand beaches— so you and your sweetheart will love exploring the land and the sea!

Make sure to note that there is more than one Puerto Viejo in Costa Rica, so if you’re searching around for more accommodation options yourself, definitely search using the full name: Puerto Viejo de Talamanca – Central America is big!

While staying closer to the national parks in the area is an exciting option to consider, when travelling on a romantic getaway, I always think it’s better to stay close to the beach! What’s better than a morning coffee with sand between your toes and the warm Pacific Ocean lapping at your feet?

Most Romantic Place to Stay in Costa Rica for Couples

Best Airbnb in Puerto Viejo: La Boheme

La Boheme

This Airbnb is one for the books! It’s a two-bedroom home that is eco-style with tons of wood and natural decor. Plus, getting to relax in the hammock on the balcony is the recipe for true relaxation. Inside the house is a wonderful kitchen in which free drinking water is provided. You’ll be within easy walking distance of the beach, and all the shops and restaurants in Puerto Viejo!

Best Hostel in Puerto Viejo: Casa Wolaba

Casa Wolaba

Casa Wolaba is a cosy hostel nestled right on the Main Street of Puerto Viejo. Offering both dorm rooms and private rooms, you and your significant other can decide whether you want some extra privacy or to save some dough! It’s a cute hostel that has a beautiful outside garden with its own coconut and mango trees! It’s one of Puerto Viejo’s best hostels so if you’re on a budget you’ll still have somewhere awesome to stay.

Best Hotel in Puerto Viejo: Villas La Paz

Villas La Paz

Alright lovebirds, it’s time to crack open the piggy bank! If you’re able to splurge a little bit, then Villas La Paz is for you! This beautiful hotel offers private villas and a beautiful pool! There’s also a tranquil garden to enjoy.  Also, for the sake of being exact—you’ll be just a 2,700 feet walk from the beach! You are sure to make beautiful memories at Villas La Paz.

Things to See and Do in Puerto Viejo

  • Hop between the many incredible beaches along this stretch of the Pacific coast including Playa Cocles, Playa Chiquita, Playa Blanca, Playa Vargas and the black sand beach of Playa Negra.
  • Discover how chocolate is made in a sustainable way on the Caribbeans chocolate tour.
  • Visit the largest indigenous group, the BriBri tribe and learn all about their traditions, culture and way of life.
  • Take a hike in Cahuita National Park which takes a beautiful route along the Pacific coast.
  • Go white water rafting on the incredible Pacuare river.
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4. Monteverde – Coolest Place to Stay in Costa Rica

Monteverde is a little bit of a tourist hotspot, so be aware that this small misty town is filled with lots of foreign visitors too! Don’t let that deter you, because there are so many things to do in Monteverde that you absolutely need to check off your Costa Rica bucket list! From flying down a zip-line course to trekking in a forest canopy to horse riding, there are lots of different ways to explore the cloud forests.

Since Monteverde is a small mountain village, you can’t go wrong deciding which part of the town to stay in because you’ll always be close to all you need!

Coolest Place to Stay in Costa Rica
Poetic or what?

Best Airbnb in Monteverde: Kapetsowa Container Loft

Kapetsowa Container Loft

Oh my goodness gracious! You need to book this Airbnb! It has to be one of the absolute most unique Airbnbs out there— and at an affordable price! Stay in a  glass loft that is perched over the Monteverde reserve. Experience both privacy and unparalleled views in this gorgeous glass loft!

Best Hostel in Monteverde: Monteverde Backpackers

Monteverde Backpackers

Monteverde Backpackers is definitely one of the best hostels in Monteverde! With a great social atmosphere, bright and beautiful murals, and the option between dorm rooms and private rooms, you’ll love the options available at Monteverde Backpackers. There’s free breakfast each morning is excellent too!

Best Hotel in Monteverde: Hotel Claro de Luna

Hotel Claro de Luna

Hotel Claro de Luna is a beautiful hotel that offers guests a tranquil stay. It’s set amidst abundant trees and greenery. Plus, it’s not sitting right in the heart of town, so you have guaranteed peace and quiet! Situated just over two miles from the Monteverde Cloud Forest, you’ll love eating at the delectable onsite restaurant. And free parking is an added bonus!

Things to See and Do in Drake Bay

  • Witness incredible biodiversity and spot the Resplendent Quetzal, a stunning teal bird found in the Monteverde cloud forest.
  • Explore the cloud forest by night and seek out armadillos and sloths with a local guide.
  • Monteverde is an incredible place to see chocolate and coffee being made too.
  • Relax at the Tabacon and Paradise hot springs.
  • Have a wild adventure and jump on the ziplines Selvatura Park or Sky Adventures Monteverde Park, you can also bungee jump 143 meters over the forest and tackle a tarzan swing too!
  • If you have a head for height but don’t fancy jumping off anything, then take a walk over the many hanging bridges to see the forest from above.

5. San José – Where to Stay in Costa Rica on a Budget

Since the capital city sits right in the middle, consider San José your central hub— the perfect spot to explore all the other top places to stay in Costa Rica! San José shouldn’t be overlooked, especially by backpackers, you’ll find some of the best budget hotels and hostels here.

From taking a tour of the National Theatre of Costa Rica to visiting the Museo del Jade, there are so many things to do in San Jose.

The historic San Jose city centre is very compact— that means that it is easy to get around on foot! It definitely has some of the cheapest accommodation options in the country. Moreover, the price of food is very low as well. When looking to avoid cracking open that beloved piggy bank, staying in San José is definitely the way to go!

When staying in San Jose— the best city to stay in Costa Rica on a budget— it’s best to stay as centrally located as possible. Stay close to the National Theatre and to Central Park to ensure an easy travel experience as well as easy access to San Jose international airport.

Where to Stay in Costa Rica on a Budget

Best Airbnb in San José: Comfortable Room

Comfortable Room

This Airbnb is run more like a bed and breakfast, so enjoy a cosy, private room with lots of common areas to enjoy— from a backyard to a dining area. The location is right in the heart of the capital city, close to the central market and to plenty of restaurants. You’ll be just a seven minutes walk from the National Theater of Costa Rica! Also, The continental breakfast sure makes mornings easy as pie.

Best Hostel in San José: Hostel Del Paseo

Hostel Del Paseo

Hostel Del Paseo is truly an incredible option for streaming your lodging in Costa Rica budget to the maximum! You won’t be far from the San Jose capital city area, situated in the Paseo Colon district. You’ll be within walking distance of everything you need! This hostel has several common areas, from a billiards table to a ping pong table, to plentiful couches and TVs! It’s one of the best hostels in Costa Rica and a cheap option.

Best Hotel in San José: Taormina Hotel and Casino

Taormina Hotel and Casino

This San Jose hotel is a shining star of Costa Rica accommodation for budget travellers out there. It’s nestled right in the San Jose city centre and offers mega-budget friendly room rates! The rooms are clean and have comfortable beds and offer complimentary breakfasts for their guests.

Things to See and Do in San José

  • If you’re looking for free things to do in San José, make sure to enjoy the parks. San José has lots of beautiful parks that are filled with tropical plants, statues, gazebos, and statues!
  • Each day there is a free two to three-hour long walking tour of the city. You’ll get to stroll the city streets and get a great introduction to San José— for free!
  • Visit the lavish National Theatre, you can enter for $10 for a look around or come back later for a show!
  • Get to know the country more by visiting the striking yellow building of the Museo Nacional De Costa Rica.
  • Check out the Pre-Colombian Gold Museum, it contains the largest collection of artefacts from this era, many date back thousands of years.
  • Get your camera ready for the hike to the giant hand at La Chimba Coffee Farm, this insta famous spot will light up your feed!
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6. Montezuma – One of the Most Unique Places to Stay in Costa Rica

Montezuma sits on the southern shore of Costa Rica on the Nicoya Peninsula. This beach town is renowned for an incredibly long stretch of soft, white sand beach simply called Playa Montezuma right on the Pacific Ocean.

What makes Montezuma the most unique place to stay in Costa Rica, is its bohemian vibes and abundance of artists living there! Expect Caribbean flair and colours and incredible street art in this awesome beach town!

If you’re a beach lover, staying nearly anywhere in Montezuma will put a smile on your face as most accommodation options will put you within easy walking distance of the beach and the warm Pacific Ocean!

One of the Most Unique Places to Stay in Costa Rica

Best Airbnb in Montezuma: Palmeras Beach cottage

Palmeras Beach cottage

This cute cottage is absolutely jaw-dropping! From the hut itself, right outside the windows,  you’ll see colourful birds and tons of monkeys! Situated outside of town right next to Palmeras Beach you can be sure of a peaceful and relaxing vibe. If you do need to go into town, it’s just a 15 min walk away too.

Best Hostel in Montezuma: Luz en El Cielo Eco Hostel

Luz en El Cielo Eco Hostel

El Cielo Eco Hostel is a truly memorable hostel, nestled right in the jungle with the city centre of Montezuma just around the bend of the road. You’ll be close to the beach and to the jungle! Moreover, this hostel has been newly renovated with plenty of exciting bells and whistles— from lockers to personal fans to USB charger ports! The locally sourced eco-breakfast is positively divine, too!

Best Hotel in Montezuma: Hotel Nya

Hotel Nya

Hotel Nya is a stunning modern hotel that offers guests a truly comfortable stay. The facilities both inside and outside your hotel room are state of the art and all the amenities are truly top-notch. Including the stunning outdoor pool! If you’re willing to indulge in a little bit more expensive a stay, Hotel Nya is for you!

Things to See and Do in Montezuma

  • Visit the Saturday morning farmer’s markets, you can pick up great handmade art and will likely hear some great local music.
  • Visiting the Montezuma Waterfall is a must-do! You can soak up the waterfall spray and the relaxing ambience while taking a dip in the natural pools.
  • There is a beautiful walking trail that meanders through the jungle and will bring you to the popular surf spot: Playa Grande.
  • Sitting just behind the Playa Grande beach is the Romelia Wildlife Reserve and a turtle sanctuary. If you’re lucky, you might even get to witness turtle eggs hatching! No matter what, you’re sure to spot groups of capuchin monkeys in the forest— so cute!
  • Go snorkelling at Isla Tortuga (Tortuga Island) just off the coast of the town, this volcanic island with white sand beaches has perfect conditions to spot marine life.
  • Check the tides and walk over to Isla de Cabuya, wander through the picturesque old cemetery engulfed in the jungle.
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7. Arenal Volcano – Where to Stay in Costa Rica for Adventure

Arenal Volcano is an active volcano in northwest Costa Rica. Sitting just 90 kilometres from San Jose, getting to Arenal Volcano is pretty easy!

Arenal Volcano is the backdrop of the town of Fortuna. It’s a cute, charming, little town that is only a few streets wide with just a handful of restaurants and shops. Fortuna is the best launching spot for the rest of your adventures!

Where to Stay in Costa Rica for Adventure

Best Airbnb in Arenal Volcano: Cabana with Arenal View!

Cabana with Arenal View!

This cabin is a private property one-bedroom home with three beds and one bathroom. It’s well-stocked with everything you need from a smart TV to a hairdryer to a refrigerator! You’ll be just a quick 15-minute walk to La Fortuna, so you will be immersed in nature while not being in too remote of a location. Also, you’ll be situated just 700meters from the Hot Springs Resort and Spa.

Best Hostel in Arenal Volcano: Arenal Backpackers Resort

Arenal Backpackers Resort

If Arenal Backpackers Resort would let me move in— I would stay there forever! This is a hostel that really doesn’t feel like a hostel. While there are wickedly affordable dorm rooms, this hostel does feel more like a hotel. They really have earned the right to put the word “resort” in their name! It’s a beautiful property with abundant gardens and a drool-worthy pool! Plus the views of the volcano are amazing from this hostel, it’s the perfect spot to go for a hike in the cloud forests.

Best Hotel in Arenal Volcano: Volcano Lodge and Thermal Experience

Volcano Lodge and Thermal Experience

Immersed in luscious tropical gardens, this hotel is positively dreamy. It’s super modern with crisp, clean rooms and tiled floors. There is free parking and complimentary breakfast served daily. There is also an outdoor pool to enjoy! This hotel really goes above and beyond to promise guests all they could wish for during their stay.

Things to See and Do in Arenal Volcano

  • Arenal Volcano sits at the heart of the Arenal Volcano National Park and you are free to wander around the national park as you like! Make sure to pack accordingly for your Costa Rica trip, especially when planning such adventures!
  • After zip-lining through the forest canopy or taking an aerial tram to an incredible observation point, you can also soak in the Arenal Volcano hot springs and enjoy a therapeutic bath in the jungle.
  • If you need another dose of adventure you can head over to the little farming town of La Fortuna just nearby and hike to La Fortuna Waterfall!
  • You can also go spelunking in the Venado Caves or walk across the Arenal Hanging Bridges. What did I say? This area is packed with adventure activities!
  • Take a walk Costa Rica’s largest lake, Lake Arenal. Sitting in the shadow of the incredible volcano the area is famous for, it’s quite the sight!
  • Explore the network of marshes and rivers in the Cano Negro National Wildlife Refuge. This protected area is teeming with amazing opportunities to spot the unique wildlife of Costa Rica including Jaribu storks, roseate spoonbills, and egrets.

8. Jacó – Where to Stay in Costa Rica on the Beach

Located on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, just southwest of San José, Jacó is known for its epic surfing spots and raucous nightlife!

If you’re interested in everything from kayaking to hiking to fishing to horse riding to surfing, then Jacó is for you! When travelling to Costa Rica, you sure don’t want to miss out on all that Jacó has to offer.

When you’re staying at arguably the best beach town in Costa Rica, you’re going to obviously want to stay close to those amazing beaches.  And make sure to note that if you stay a little further away from the centre of town, that doesn’t always mean you’re far away from the beach!

Where to Stay in Costa Rica on the Beach
Photo: Domenico Convertini (Flickr)

Best Airbnb in Jacó: New Yellow House

New Yellow House

This one-bedroom one-bathroom apartment is a fantastic find! Both the town and the beach are just 650 meters from your doorstep! That’s right, all the best restaurants, clubs, and casinos are within easy walking distance of this Airbnb. There is also a barbeque area and a small pool that guests are able to enjoy. You’ll have everything you need in this Airbnb from hot water to air conditioning!

Best Hostel in Jacó: Room2Board Hostel and Surf School

Room2Board Hostel and Surf School

Room2Board is mere steps away from the beach and has a super cool atmosphere! With ridiculously affordable priced dorm rooms available, you’ll love saving a few dollars and enjoying the party vibes at this cool hostel. There are yoga classes offered daily as well as surf lessons available. This is definitely one of Jaco’s best hostels!

Best Hotel in Jacó: Hotel Terraza del Pacifico

Hotel Terraza del Pacifico

Hotel Terraza del Pacifico is a stellar beachfront hotel situated right on Playa Hermosa Beach. And if you don’t feel like getting salty water, you can always enjoy the two hotel pools here! There are 61 different rooms, including private villas available. While I wouldn’t describe this hotel as budget-friendly, it certainly won’t make you cringe when you see the prices either!

Things to See and Do in Jacó

  • Explore the Carrara National Park with its abundant scarlet macaws.
  • If that’s not enough, then next check out the Pura Vida national park which will lead you through a meandering path in the rainforest to the Bijagual Waterfall!
  • Hit up the big waves at Hermosa Beach or take in the interesting grey-sand beach of Jacó Beach.
  • Hike up to the Miro Mountain View Point for incredible views over Jacó below.
  • Visit Los Sueños Adventure Park for some awesome ATV, Ziplining, horse riding, canyoning and even a chocolate tour!
  • Jacó is world-famous for its birdwatching opportunities. Here you can see toucans, various birds of prey and the famous Scarlet Macaw.
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FAQs about Finding a Place to Stay in Costa Rica

Here’s what people usually ask us about the areas of Costa Rica and where to stay.

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Final Thoughts on Where to Stay in Costa Rica

Costa Rica is an incredible country to visit filled with spectacular biodiversity, pristine beaches, and colossal adventure opportunities! And, thankfully it’s got some pretty awesome budget hotels too!

Whether you’re looking to relax on the white sands a stroll away from the beach town of Jacó, go for a hike in the cloud forests in the Arenal Volcano area, or check out all the street art in San José, you’re sure to have an awesome trip to Costa Rica! Especially when you stay in one of our Airbnbs, hostels, or hotels in Costa Rica that we hand-selected to meet all your travel needs!

Just go with the flow.

Thanks for reading – that was fun! 😀

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