City Life in San Jose, Costa Rica

Explore Costa Rica's Capital City

Costa Rica’s dynamic economic and cultural hub, San Jose, should be a part of every traveler’s itinerary. Spend an afternoon wandering markets and parks to get a feel for what life is like in Central America’s most walkable capital city.

What makes it so great? First, the climate. It’s tropical latitude and elevation (around 3,500 feet above sea level) make for pleasantly warm days and cool nights – no temperature extremes here. But pleasant weather is just the beginning. You’ll find the country’s most important public institutions in the capital, along with great shopping, hopping nightlife, great restaurants, and all the other trappings of a major city. Simply sitting in the Plaza Central and watching the crowds ebb and flow is a great way to spend a few hours.

*Bars, nightlife, restaurants, pubs, mainly Escalante and Amón.. resurgence of nightlife in SJ.

San Jose’s Museums

When you feel like heading indoors, most of Costa Rica’s best museums are located in downtown San Jose, including the Gold Museum, Jade Museum, National Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art and Design, and the Museum of Costa Rican Art. Each deserves a visit.

San Jose is also a main transportation hub. You can find inexpensive regional flights to major tourist destinations, and bus lines that go just about anywhere.

Costa Rica’s nature beckons, but don’t leave too soon. A couple of days exploring city life can offer a good perspective to any traveler looking for a deeper connection with the country.