Table of contents
Costa Rica is a great vacation destination for families, with dozens of activities that parents and kids alike can enjoy. While some adventures have minimum age requirements, you’d be surprised how many are open to even small children.
Here are our nominations for some of the top things to do in Costa Rica for families.
Go to the beach
Did you ever see a kid who didn’t like the beach? From digging in the sand to frolicking in the waves, the beach is a perfect place for a family to spend their time in Costa Rica. Just keep a close eye on little ones and beware of heavy surf.
You may be surprised to learn that most zipline operations allow children as young as 6. There may also be minimum weight requirements. And you might find that children sometimes overcome the “fear factor” better than adults.
Take a surfing lesson
Kids as young as 4 or 5 can learn to surf, and in fact the young ones often get the “hang” of it faster than their parents.
Take a hike
If a child can walk, a child can hike. Of course, small children may not be up for climbing Mount Chirripó, but you can find hikes anywhere appropriate for your kids’ ages. Manuel Antonio National Park even has a short, paved trail where you can push a baby in a stroller.
Take a night hike
With a good guide, you’d be amazed how many spiders, snakes, frogs and other creepy-crawlies you can see at night. Kids love these hikes.
Subscribe to our newsletter
to stay up to date
Go to an animal rescue center
What kid wouldn’t want to see jaguars, monkeys and sloths up close and personal? You’ll find zoos and animal rescue centers all over Costa Rica, typically featuring animals rescued from the pet trade or being rehabilitated from injury or illness.
Take a sunset cruise.
Anyone who comes to Costa Rica should plan on getting on some kind of boat. One great option is a sunset cruise on a catamaran or sailboat, which typically include snorkeling, dinner and (for Mom and Dad) an open bar.
Go rafting or tubing
Most operators have minimum ages of 12 or 13, but if your kids are old enough, they’ll love this adventure. Helmets and life jackets will be supplied.
Go kayaking or canoeing
Smaller kids can share a canoe or a two-person kayak with a parent, preferably in a slow-moving river, and of course with a life jacket.
Hit the pool
This may be a no-brainer, but kids can entertain themselves for hours in a swimming pool, and any self-respecting hotel will have one.
The most common injury to children in Costa Rica is sunburn, so don’t forget the sunscreen. Also, never underestimate the power of the ocean, and keep a close eye on kids at the beach. Check with tour operators on appropriate ages and inquire about any safety risks.
But generally speaking, your worries should be few. A trip to Costa Rica with your family is an unforgettable adventure, and it’s likely to be remembered by your kids as their most awesome vacation ever.