When to Go to the North Pacific Coast

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When to Go to the North Pacific Coast

High Season: Mid-December to April

This is the driest region of the country, with only 165 cm (65 in) of average annual rainfall. It's also the hottest region, with average temperatures around 30°C to 35°C (86°F to 95°F) in high season. It's no wonder that planeloads of sun-starved northerners come here for guaranteed sunshine and heat. The beaches and trails can get packed during these drier months, especially mid-December to February, when school is out in Costa Rica. January can be quite breezy, especially along the coast, thanks to the annual Papagayo winds. February through April are the driest months: skies are clear, but the heat is intense and the landscape is brown and parched. Fishing and scuba diving are at their best during this period, though.

Low Season: May through October

Major downpours are pretty much guaranteed every afternoon during the rainy season, which bring lower prices, fewer crowds, and a lush green landscape. But mornings are usually fresh and clear. Roads can become quite muddy, though, making travel difficult.

Shoulder Season: November to mid-December

This is the best time to visit, when the rains have abated, the landscape is lush, and the evening air is cool. Hotels and restaurants are prepped for the impending tourist influx, and staff are fresh and eager to please. High-season rates begin mid-November; except for the popular U.S. Thanksgiving week, you can usually make a deal.

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