Costa Rica is emerging as one of the adventure capitals of the world. This is a big attraction for many people who purchase a second home here or retire in Costa Rica. Following are some of the more popular activities.
Wind Surfing – Kite Surfing
Costa Rica offers excellent wind surfing in many spots. The most famous is Lake Arenal, where world-class winds draw surfers from around the globe. Another great spot is Salinas Bay, near the Nicaraguan border. While these two spots offer the most consistent winds, many other spots draw wind surfers and kite surfers when conditions are good. Kite surfing is a new sport here in Costa Rica. Samara is nice spot for this, as is Salinas Bay.
Canopy Tours and Canyoning in Costa Rica
Canopy tours have been a staple of Costa Rica’s tourism industry since the early 1990s. Now it seems like almost every hotel offers one! This is a great way to see nature up close and personal, and you don’t have to be a monkey to participate in the tour. Tour operators can accommodate children, the elderly and even people with many kinds of disabilities. The main requirement is not to be afraid of heights. These tours have an excellent safety record and are regulated by the government to make sure they use proper safety procedures and backup systems. A similar tour, but more demanding and newer, is the canyoning adventure. This tour uses a similar set up with zip lines and mountain-climbing gear that has been adapted. The difference is that the lines are set up over a waterfall and you more or less rappel down the face of the waterfall. The tour can be combined with a zip-line tour, or normally a hike through the forest.
Mountain biking is a very popular sport among Ticos. Costa Rica’s picturesque settings and rural roads are ideal for the practice of this sport. There are small competitions in many different areas each weekend, sponsored by local clubs or municipalities. There are several tours available if you want to rent a bike or go with a guide, in a local area. Nationally, some operators offer bike tours, and one organizes the annual “Ruta de los Conquistadores”, which is a coast to coast race following the route the Spaniards took in Colonial times.
Bungee Jumping in Costa Rica
Two companies offer bungee jumping in Costa Rica. They both operate on the same bridge over the Colorado River just outside of Grecia. The jump is a 265-foot free fall into the river gorge, the natural setting is breathtaking, regardless of whether or not you actually jump! Both companies offer a 50% discount if you jump again the same day and night jumps are also avaible. Woohoooo!
Whitewater Rafting and Kayaking
Several locations in Costa Rica offer Class II, III and IV rapids for rafting or kayaking. Anyone can go river rafting, as the rafts are accompanied by raft guides and safety guides in kayaks. Also, the companies offer different tours you can choose based on your comfort level. Kayaking is also available for all levels of experience. Beginners may take lessons offered by the companies.