There are so many reasons to visit what has been voted one of the happiest places to live, Costa Rica.
This peace-loving nation has the best beaches the world has to offer – including Drake Bay. There are ample cool gardens, unique animals (including sloths!), and serene beauty all around the country to delve into. If you're in need of a vacation, we've found the best resorts in Costa Rica for travel enthusiasts. Those seeking to explore the country are in for a sensuous time, especially while staying at some of the best resorts in Costa Rica. Let’s get started to discover why we love this paradise!
A Little Bit About Costa Rica
European explorer Christopher Columbus stumbled upon this paradise on September 18, 1502. However, the location's existence was here thousands of years before his arrival and certainly well before the best resorts in Costa Rica.
Ruins of a large, ancient city still remain, capturing hearts from tourists around the globe. Archaeologists have found evidence showing that the country was heavily influenced from the Mexican Olmec and Nahuatl civilizations.
Costa Rica is a country with no standard army, proud feminists (because women don’t take their husband’s surnames), and also boasts five percent of the world’s species in its tropical forests. With temperatures averaging out at 70 degrees, Costa Rica is an exquisite paradise for tourists.
Situated in Central America, Costa Rica became an independent state in 1838, after gaining sovereignty from Spain. As of 2012, there is a population of 4,636,328, making it extremely small and thereby perfect for absorbing everything the country has to offer.
Reasons People Love Costa Rica
People love Costa Rica (and the best resorts in Costa Rica) for its pristine beaches, volcanoes, and protected jungles. All of these speak for themselves. The country boasts Pacific and Caribbean coastlines and makes the perfect destination for a getaway.
There are so many things to do here! For those times you wish to relax, cast your eyes on around 900 species of birds, including parrots, hummingbirds, Scarlet Macaws and many more.
To unwind, you can enjoy a naturally-heated thermal spring to soothe those aching bones after venturing. Tabacon is Costa Rica’s infamous hot springs, and there are so many others to choose from too.
Costa Rica has over 100 volcanic formations dating back over 65 million years. Many of them are classified as active volcanoes, so they're definitely worth catching. Hike up Arsenal, Poas, or Irazu for breath-taking views of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, or stunning lakes.
The Best Resorts in Costa Rica - Including Luxury Options
Whatever brings you to the rich coast, it’s an ideal destination for a relaxing holiday, or the ultimate travelling experience. There’s an abundance of places to choose from, and we’ve found the best resorts in Costa Rica to experience all that the coastlines and forests have to offer.
1. Nayara Springs
Our favourite features:
- iHome audio system
- Plunge pool leading to natural mineral hot springs
- An array of exceptional food and dining
A cluster of luxury villas, Nayara Springs appeals to a wide range of travellers due to the many amenities the resort offers. Indulge in the award-winning spa to relax and enjoy the art of doing absolutely nothing at one of the best resorts in Costa Rica.
However, you don’t even need to use the spa to feel energised and reborn, as the tropical jungle overlooking you is all you could need. For meal times, Nayara Springs has three of Arenal’s top-rated restaurants for a romantic meal with a loved one, or just to taste the wonders of this country.
Costa Rica is renowned for its world-class coffee. Due to this, the Espresso Bar offers daily fresh roasted coffee to taste. Afterwards, relax and take the choice of two oversized pools, including a swim-up bar for a cocktail on demand.
This is an ideal spot for if you love ultimate luxury when you’re on holiday. Nayara Springs contains Costa Rica’s largest and more luxurious guest rooms. Families beware though, as one of the best resorts in Costa Rica, it’s only open to adults -- which is perfect for time away. Nestled in natural mineral hot springs and an expansive private garden, it’s relaxing, luxurious, and definitely something to brag about.
2. Punta Islita
Our favourite features:
- The resort offers romantic candle-lit dinners on the beach
- The essence of the resort is a fun getaway with out-of-this-world ventures
- All the rooms are eco-friendly and stylish
Hotel Punta Islita is heaven on earth and definitely one of the best resorts in Costa Rica. Offering one of the best ocean views, the resort is also amongst the best eco-luxury beach resorts in the country.
If you’re looking for more of a fun adventure than a tranquil time away, Punta Islita has much to offer. Cooking lessons, horseback riding, zip-lining, and art sessions beckon – all of which are hotel-led activities available to all guests. When you’re done with a hectic day, watch the horizon from your room or a top terrace restaurant for a tranquil sunset.
The resort accommodates all needs, so if you’re visiting for an adventure or a honeymoon, they will organise your stay accordingly. For a holiday filled with romance and love, their beachfront location has the perfect ambiance and charm to propose or celebrate a honeymoon. The ocean cove scenery is the ideal backdrop to help top off your special occasion.
Choose from an array of villas settled in exotic tropical gardens with a plunge pool, or book a smaller configuration framed by landscape views. No matter the choice, each villa offers luxury features, amazing views, and an exceptional service.
3. Four Seasons
Our favourite features:
- There are two beaches to choose from – all within walking distance
- Each room offers a bespoke view of the beach and sunset
- There are umpteen options at the spa for pure relaxation
This Four Seasons resort offers a taste of Costa Rican culture in a luxury landscape, all the while boasting the title of one of the best resorts in Costa Rica. It’s the ultimate magnet for a romantic and chilled venture, overlooking the Virador beach. After you leave, you’ll be reeling in the pure bliss the resort has to offer. If you like a secluded resort which is isolated from the outside world and exudes peace and love, this might be a place to look into.
Four Seasons appeals to a wide range of travelers – especially romantic couples, though you can adopt whichever venture you’d like in Costa Rica. For adventurists, indulge in tropical surfing with overhead waves and perfect temperatures for an unforgettable experience. The resort also offers a guided tour through the tropical forest where you can engage with iguanas, butterflies, monkeys, endangered tress, and over 25 species of giant trees.
After a long day exploring the gardens and beaches, rest and relax in the choice of 18 spa treatment rooms, four restaurants, and four pools. There are over 182 guest rooms, suites, and villas to emerge yourself in – all of which offer the comforts of a home from home and rich textures and woods of Costa Rica.
4. Hacienda AltaGracia
Our favourite features:
- Private air transfers
- Wellness retreats
- Unspoiled surroundings
Hacienda AltaGracia is a luxury boutique in Costa Rica’s southern region atop the lush mountains of Perez Zeledon. The resort is an exclusive estate with Central America’s finest spas, dining options, and exclusive activities. Surrounded by natural beauty in an untouched area, it offers an authentic experience in an intimate hideaway at one of the best resorts in Costa Rica.
Discover this one-of-a-kind resort with a Hacienda vibe and comforts of your own home in a paradise setting. The AltaGracia experience is like no other because of tropical fruit tasting sessions, mountain biking opportunities, and meditation classes. Unique to this resort is the food which is self-produced from their 20-acre farm.
If you feel like temporarily escaping, take advantage of their ‘Ultralight Plane’ and see Costa Rica from an angle you never imagined. From up above, you’ll view the Pacific Ocean, rainfalls, rain forests, and rivers. For a quieter moment, opt for a romantic dining experience, or perhaps embark in their relaxing spa with an inclusive DIY exfoliating scrub.
5. Kura Design Villas
Our favourite features:
- The open-spaced shower in the villa
- Sipping cocktails at the pool, no matter the time of day
- The overall rain forest elegance
On the south Pacific coast, you’ll find the Kura Design Villas – an adult’s glamorous getaway. In addition to being one of the overall best resorts in Costa Rica, Forbes voted it the most glamorous romantic resort in Costa Rica. It’s not hard to see why!
The resort shapes tailor-made moments for the ultimate honeymoon experience. This includes a deep tissue massage for two in their open-air Sha Spa, or a half-day canoeing adventure. Or perhaps, you’d like to spend a full day at the Whale’s Tail excursion to make memories for life.
Their infinity pool adds a contemporary feel to a traditional culture. With a 180-degree view of the Pacific horizon, you can swim right up to the beautiful sunsets Costa Rica offers. Open all night, it comes alive with a state-of-the-art underwater system and bar and lounge. Once you’ve dried off, end your day with a 360-view beneath stars at the Sky Lounge and transform your adventure to a relaxing getaway.
Their suites feature iconic glass showers, an open-floor design, and fresh sea breezes, daily. All of the suites are located just a short walk away from the pool, delicious restaurants, and tropical gardens. Many of them offer an ocean view, personal hammock on the balcony overlooking the waters, and contemporary feel.
6. Arenas Del Mar
Our favourite features:
- The suites are just minutes from your private beach
- Overlook the Pacific coast
- Experience wildlife up close and personal
Another of the best resorts in Costa Rice is Arenas Del Mar - the only luxury beachfront resort in Manuel Antonio. Here, you can witness sloths relaxing above, and iguanas sunbathing in the sand. It is truly where family and nature connects.
Arenas Del Mar encourages you to celebrate your pivotal life moments here – from honeymoons to birthdays. If you’re searching for an eco-adventure in a luxury location where you can bring the rest of the family, look no further.
There are plenty of family-friendly activities - from tortilla making classes, to venturing in the Manuel Antonio National Park. The resort takes all of the hassle out of planning, and can create an itinerary fit for your dreams. Visit the National Park nearby, and paddle in the Pacific Ocean for your morning wake-up call. Alternatively, you can relax in a private Jacuzzi overlooking the water, and embark in the holiday of a lifetime.
Once it’s time to unwind, feel the ocean breeze lapping against your face as you absorb panoramic views of this heavenly environment. Alternatively, you can enjoy a divine dinner beside the ocean and create memories that’ll last a lifetime.
Choose a resort that's right for you.
With so much choice, it can be difficult narrowing down the best resorts in Costa Rica to visit. Depending on your holiday objectives, there’s a resort above that’s suitable for any of your wishes. Costa Rica is extremely adaptable to your adventure, so make the most of this beautiful country.
Have you visited this wonderful region? What are your favorite or best resorts in Costa Rica? Tell us about your experience in the comments and share this with fellow travel enthusiasts.