Tortuguero Park is a bit of a hike from San Jose, Costa Rica at three hours away, but the small village of Tortuguero, or “Region of Turtles,” is considered the most important green turtle nesting site in the Western Hemisphere. Be on the lookout for the six species that frequent the park. It’s also home to a wealth of wildlife, including capuchin monkeys and tree frogs. Trek through the rainforest, relax on white-sand beaches, and explore coral reefs at Manuel Antonio National Park on Costa Rica’s central Pacific coast.

Embark on a tour of the active Poas Volcano, Doka Coffee plantation, and the La Paz waterfall. Alternate excursions also include a trip to the craft capital of Costa Rica, Sarchí, where you can load up on mini painted oxcarts, hand-painted ceramics, and tropical wood wares. At the city’s largest market, you can browse vendors and sample fare like Costa Rica’s national dish: gallo pinto, rice with black or red beans. The rich cultural history echoes in several delicious Costa Rican dishes.

Celebrate the capital city’s cultural centerpiece, National Theatre of Costa Rica, which dates back to 1897, by taking in a symphony or simply touring the hall’s lavish interior, which features a Carrara marble floor and walls embellished with gold overlays. Whether you catch a show or simply take in the Spanish Colonial and neoclassical architecture, you’ll be treated to unforgettable views. Browse the carefully curated collection of jade artifacts at the Jade Museum and learn about pre-Columbian culture at this five-story museum, which relocated next to the downtown Plaza de la Democracia in 2014.

San Jose, Costa Rica, is calling you to Central America. Jet off to your next adventure with a flight on Southwest®. Southwest Airlines® flies to Juan Santamaria International Airport, making it easy for you to start your Central American adventure. And when you book with Southwest, you can book with confidence, knowing that the process will be straightforward from flight selection to checkout. Of course, having a memorable international trip is about more than finding a great deal on a flight. Learn more about the Southwest® Experience and book your next flight to Juan Santamaria International Airport.

Got flexible travel plans?

Use our Low Fare Calendar to find the lowest fares on flights to San Jose, Costa Rica, available inside your international travel window.

Find flights

Things to do in San Jose, Costa Rica.

Can’t-miss beaches
  • Playa Jaco
  • Playa Negra
  • Playa Tamarindo
Outdoor adventures
  • Manuel Antonio National Park
  • Tortuguero National Park
  • Poás Volcano
Enriching outings
  • National Theatre of Costa Rica
  • Sarchí craft market
  • The Jade Museum

Other destinations in Central America


Whether it’s adventure you seek or simply a place to dig your toes in the sand, you’ll find it all here.

Read more about Belize
Liberia, Costa Rica

Giddy-up, cowboys and cowgals, the sabanero culture hub of Costa Rica is calling your name.

Read more about Liberia, Costa Rica