Costa Rica is a Central American country of nearly 5 million people, bordering Nicaragua to the north and Panama to the South. It has long coastlines to both the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, boasting beautiful beaches and a warm, mostly tropical climate. It is also blessed with impressive mountain ranges, the biggest one being the famous Cordillera de Talamanca, noted for its ecological wealth and diversity.
Are you a traveller who is serious about not just exploring but also preserving some of the world’s most stunning natural environments? Then read on for why this beautiful country should be on your list of places to visit.
A nature-lover’s paradise
It’s difficult to believe that this relatively small country, similar in size to places like Denmark or the US state of West Virginia, can be home to 29 national parks, each a vibrant and diverse ecosystem. It also has 19 wildlife refuges and 8 biological reserves, as well as many protected areas which are a haven for eco-tourism.
For the braver of heart, Costa Rica also has many volcanoes: although just 6 are active and only a handful tend to be mentioned in the tourist guides, there are over 60 dormant or extinct ones! Please bear in mind that visiting an active volcano can be risky and eruptions can create dangerous ashfall or landslides. However, local authorities carefully monitor volcanic activity and issue alerts to keep residents and visitors safe.
Costa Rica’s unofficial motto is pura vida or ‘pure life’, which certainly makes sense when we think about the unspoilt and carefully guarded natural beauty of this exquisite destination.
Activities for the eco-tourist
As a traveller passionate about the environment, you may want to consider staying in CST certified hotels. The Certificate of Sustainable Tourism (CST) program is undertaken by the Costa Rica Tourism Board, in order to identify and promote eco-friendly hotels which have gone beyond the norm in sustainable practices. Sustainable tourism is committed to looking after the environment, preserving it for the future generations as well as satisfying the tourist demand in a way that doesn’t over-exploit the country’s natural resources.
Because the demand for this kind of accommodation tends to be high and they are limited in number, it is advisable to book at least 2 months in advance if you’re travelling in low season (May to November) or 4 months in advance for high season (December to April).
Once your accommodation is organised, you can decide whether you want to explore sea-turtle conservation, look forboat rental Costa Rica, schedule a visit to one of the national parks, or take part in many other activities available in Costa Rica’s lush forests.
You will also want to spend time in its protected wildlife areas – of which it has many. The country is recognised as being at the forefront of conservation and has three natural areas that are inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List as places that must be protected for future generations to enjoy and appreciate.
On top of offering all this vast natural beauty, Costa Rica is politically peaceful and generally very safe country, so definitely one for the ‘must visit’ list!
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