People usually try to avoid traveling during the rainy season. You have to carry more gear. It isn’t as pleasant to go on walks, and there are some activities you may not be able to do. And, let’s face it, most people like to see vacation photos from sunny days.
However, there are some good reasons to make a trip to Costa Rica between May and November, the rainier months of the year.
Of all of the special sights one can experience during the rainy season, perhaps the most impressive is watching baby sea turtles hatching and pin wheeling their little flippers from the beach back to the ocean. There are many different species of turtles found in the waters off the coast of Costa Rica and each one has their own nesting season.
One of the most important nesting spots of the endangered green turtle is at Tortuguero National Park. Peak time for nesting is between June and October. Exploring the park is an adventure in itself, a largely marine environment of channels, canals and lagoons, broken up by dense mangroves and tropical forest. The turtles hatch at night and a professional guide will lead you to the beaches to watch the hatchings from a safe distance.
Bird watchers will find something to see all during the year, however, migratory birds are best viewed between the months of September and November. Carara National Park in particular offers some great bird watching at any time, but it can be beneficial to go in May and June before the rains are really heavy and when the cooler temperatures may lead to more bird activity.
Nature lovers visiting Costa Rica will not want to miss a trip to the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. Only 120 people are allowed on any given trail at one time so this alone can be a reason to travel during the rainy season when there are far fewer tourists around. If you go in May, at the beginning of the season, you will experience less rain but will still be within the most common period for sighting the incredibly rare resplendent quetzal.
The rainy season is also a great time for going whitewater rafting, depending on your experience and your sense of adventure. The waters are especially raging from June to October so, if you are a beginner and not sure of yourself, you may want to stick to the beginning of the rainy season before it gets too wild.
If any of these activities appeal to you, it can be well worth visiting Costa Rica during these months. Since it is a less popular time for traveling there, not only will you have fewer tourists to contend with, you may also be able to take advantage of lower rates.