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5 Costa Rica Activities For Outdoor Enthusiasts

With striking mountains, rainforests, volcanoes, and waterfalls under its belt, Costa Rica is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. If you are a traveler, a local, or an expat who has been wanting to indulge in an outdoor activity but doesn’t know where to start, this article is for you!

How does indulging in outdoor activities help?

Outdoor recreation has tremendous benefits for the mind and body. Connecting with nature reduces stress and psychological disorders and improves cognitive abilities. Nature can heal your soul, and the fresh air helps in clearing the mind. Going outdoors also helps in getting some sunlight which has become tough in our sedentary lifestyle.

5 Activities In Costa Rica For Outdoor Enthusiasts


Biking is quite popular in Costa Rica, and is used as a mode of recreation by many. Some prefer to cycle to observe nature and be in calmness and peace, while some like to get off-road into the trails to get an adrenaline rush.

Some have incorporated cycling into their lifestyle and even use it as a mode of transport. Cycling groups are commonly seen in places like Miro Mountain or Carara National Park during weekends here. You can join one in order to be motivated to go cycling on weekends.

If you are traveling, you can rent a bicycle and go cycling or you can look for cycle tours at your destination. Many resorts and national parks in Costa Rica have well-maintained biking trails.


Another popular outdoor activity in Costa Rica is hiking. Many rainforests, waterfalls, national parks, volcanoes, and viewpoints in Costa Rica require a short or a long hike. A couple of good places to hike are the Rio Celeste Waterfall Hike at Tenorio Volcano National Park or the Arenal Hanging Bridges Hike.

Some outdoor enthusiasts indulge in hiking during their travels, and some like to plan short hikes during weekends. Hiking is believed to improve mental well-being and helps you connect with nature.


Running is often a part of the morning schedule for many people in Costa Rica. The paths here are well-maintained and suitable for running. A couple of good running trails are the Arenal 1968 volcano trail or closer to San Jose, you have the Tres Cruces Trail in Escazu.

Running has a lot of benefits for the body, and helps boost stamina. While some run every morning to keep themselves fit, some like to go running in forests and beautiful trails in nature.


There are many surfing destinations in Costa Rica. Jaco, Tamarindo, and Puerto Viejo de Talamanca to name a few. Surfers from all over the world come here to test and polish their surfing skills. Although a bit off the beaten track, Pavones, is a great spot for the more experienced surfer.

Surfing helps burn calories, strengthens muscles, and improves your balance and coordination.

Canoeing & Kayaking

The difference between Canoeing and Kayaking is that canoeing involves paddling a canoe with a single-bladed paddle while kayaking involves using a double-bladed paddle. Almost every beach or water body you go to in Costa Rica offers plenty of opportunities for canoeing and kayaking with Lake Arenal, Manuel Antonio, and Tortuguero being some of the more popular destinations. If your looking for a challenge the Curu Sea Kayaking in the Nicoya Peninsula is something you might want to look into.

Canoeing and kayaking help increase upper body and core strength and improve your endurance.

Final Thoughts

Stress at work and in our personal lives can be very overwhelming and indulging in outdoor activities is a good way to keep stress at bay. I hope that the next time you plan a vacation, you will include some of these activities in your itinerary.

Astha Garg
Astha Garg
Content Creator & Certified Yoga Instructor An advocate for environmental consciousness, has a strong quest for knowledge, and a deep love for traveling & exploring.

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