Sarapiqui sits at the heart of it all—the emerald core of a proudly green nation. Costa Ricans are deeply passionate about this region’s wild rivers, accessible biological reserves, and unforgettable vistas. Centered around the town of Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui, the Sarapiqui corridor forms a lush arc, curving southeast toward the Caribbean and northwest to Arenal.

If you’re seeking outdoor adventure, you’ve found your natural habitat.

San Pedro Claver

Braulio Carrillo National Park

Several roads reach Sarapiqui from San José, tracing the slopes of the Poas, Barva, and Cacho Volcanoes. Our favorite of these passes over the Cordillera Central and through the spectacular Braulio Carrillo National Park—a mountainous landscape of virgin forests, spontaneous waterfalls and breathtaking views. Traversing this road, we can’t help wondering if we’ve teleported to Oahu.

Over 90% of Braulio Carrillo’s territory is primary forest—vital habitat for the endangered Green macaw and over 500 other bird species. The park forms a biological corridor with two neighboring reserves: Rara Avis and La Selva. A pristine private reserve, Rara Avis is also one of the best birdwatching bases in Central America. Nearby, just five minutes from Puerto Viejo, La Selva is home to a world-class ecological research center. Here you can hike to thundering waterfalls, observe howler monkeys, and support the conservation efforts of the Organization for Tropical Studies.

San Pedro Claver
Puerto Viejo was once Costa Rica’s principal shipping port—an odd fact given it lies more than 40 miles inland. Goods were transported down the Sarapiqui River to the Rio San Juan before heading to ports around the Caribbean. This town is wreathed by fertile plantations, many offering tours and samples to visitors.

Among these are farms producing organic pineapple, shade-grown coffee, and cacao. At the area’s banana plantations, freshly-cut bunches are transported on an ingenious aerial railway that looks like a steampunk zipline. (Someday we’ll get a ride.)

What to do in Sarapiqui

If you’re seeking outdoor adventure, you’ve found your natural habitat. The Sarapiqui region is an all-you-can-eat feast of zip-lines, rappelling, mountain biking, hiking, and riding.

The Sarapiqui River is a world-class whitewater route; here, you can choose from sections that are gentle (Class II), exciting (Class III), or downright jarring (Class IV).

What is the Weather Like?

Costa Rica is located in the tropics and close to the equator and is considered a rainforest country with warm temperatures being characteristic throughout the year. There are two well-defined seasons:

Dry Season: December – April
Green Season: May – November

Average temperatures in Sarapiqui vary barely at all. Considering humidity, temperatures feel nice most of the year, excluding some hot weeks in the summer, with a fair chance of precipitation about half of the year. The hottest months are April, March, and then February with highs regularly around 88°F with temperatures rarely dropping below 65°F at night.

These averages are changing, please check extended weather forecasts using your favorite weather app prior to departure.

Getting There

Sarapiqui is approximately two hours from San Jose. Visits to Sarapiqui are easily combined with time in the Southern Caribbean, Tortuguero, Arenal, and San Jose.

Short regional flights connect San Jose with several domestic airfields. Private charters can also be arranged.

For domestic flights within Costa Rica, you will most likely be traveling on a small aircraft which imposes weight restrictions on luggage, typically 25 pounds per person.

Start your journey today

LANDED delivers the finest in custom, private travel to Central America, South America, and Antarctica. These regions are our passion; we know them first-hand and by heart. Speak with one of our travel designers and let us create a tailored itinerary for you in Sarapiqui. 

How to combine Sarapiqui

Have some extra time? Here are some options for you to combine with