Many other butterfly gardens have cropped up around Costa Rica, but here is the original, an actual working farm whose "livestock" is butterflies. The facility's several microclimates keep some 40 species of tropical butterflies comfortable. Come when it's sunny if you can—they don't flutter around when it rains, although cloudy afternoons do give the best photo ops. You can get here via tours from San José that depart from the capital at 7:20, 10, and 2. Regardless of your mode of transport, you can wander around the gardens on your own, or take one of the two-hour guided walks that begin at 8:45, 11, 1, or 3. If coming here by taxi or asking directions, Costa Ricans know the place as the Finca de Mariposas.
La Guácima de Alajuela, 500 m south, 100 m east of the main entrance to Los Reyes Country Club, Alajuela, 20105, Costa Rica