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21 Best Things to do in San Jose, Costa Rica

21 Best Things to do in San Jose, Costa Rica


While lots of people make San Jose a fast rest stop on their Costa Rica getaway, we are right here to inform you to make certain to place it on your travel plan. With an awesome ambiance as well as lots of destinations, there are several points to do in San Jose, Costa Rica making it the excellent start or finishing to your journey.

So why should you go to San Jose? San Jose is the Capital city of Costa Rica, it is Costa Rica’s biggest city as well as it is full of stunning style, pleasant residents, as well as an amazing range of tasks. San Jose is house to 1.5 million Costa Ricans that take pleasure in among the greatest requirements of residing in Latin America. There are lots of galleries as well as galleries to check out as well as its hip metropolitan ambiance creates an outstanding location to make a base as you check out a few of Costa Rica’s leading destinations.

Top Things to do in San Jose, Costa Rica

Top Things to do in San Jose Costa Rica

San Jose can be frustrating when you initially get here. The city is an expansive metropolitan area, as groups of individuals load the different strolling roads, as well as the dining establishments are loaded with young as well as hip city slickers. Once you look past the blockage as well as mayhem, you’ll uncover a social city full of lots of points to do.

When touchdown at San Juan Santamaria International Airport, take the burn out of traveling as well as publication your exclusive transfer to your resort. Your chauffeur will certainly welcome you at arrivals as well as take you straight to your resort problem-free. This airport terminal is additionally where you’ll fly right into when going to the Arenal volcano location as well as Monteverde cloud woodland.

Where to Stay in San Jose

Where to stay in San Jose Costa Rica

We recommend hugging Avenida Central (Central Avenue) in midtown San Jose. Located in the facility of the city, it is very easy to stroll to a lot of the top San Jose destinations. There is a massive focus of resorts in this field to fit all budget plans as well as we remained at the Gran Hotel San Jose Hilton.

I wouldn’t recommend remaining at the Juan Santamaria International Airport although there is lots of holiday accommodation right here. It is simply a little as well way out of community as well as you won’t truly have the ability to absorb every one of San Jose’s night life as well as destinations. We enjoyed having the ability to choose a stroll on Avenida Central during the night as well as early in the early morning. That being claimed, the Hampton Inn & Suites is beautiful. It’s a little bit a lot more budget-friendly as well as Ubers are rather sensible to navigate San Jose. If you are doing outing as well as assisted trips, the airport terminal location might be a great choice. Check it out on TripAdvisor

Gran Hotel San Jose

Gran Hotel in San Jose Costa Rica

The Gran Hotel San Jose Hilton produced a wonderful base to check out every one of San Jose’s leading vacationer destinations as well as it was a fantastic building with impressive sights of the city. We had some traveling indicate make use of so we looked for one of the most practical lavish resort we might locate as well as it was excellent. We strolled almost everywhere as well as its bar had the most effective sights in the city. Even without traveling factors, it is a cost effective high-end resort by any kind of city requirements. Check out rates as well as accessibility on TripAdvisor / Booking.com

If you are searching for an extra regional choice make certain to look into this cool Air B&B right in the facility of community.

What to do in San Jose Costa Rica

things to do in san jose costa rica
Get your web link to the most effective points to do in Costa Rica right here

Okay, since we have actually recommended where to remain in the city, allow’s have a look in all the impressive points to do in San Jose Costa Rica to attract you to include it to your container listing. Let’s go!

1. Avenida Central – Central Avenue

Avenida Central in San Jose Costa Rica

Avenida Central (Central Avenue) is a strolling road that goes throughout the core of midtown San Jose. It is full of dining establishments, stores, as well as destinations. The finest means to begin your day is to locate a regional coffee bar to have some tasty Costa Rican coffee take it scat, as well as begin strolling along the method. Avenida Central is peaceful in the early mornings as well as strolling along the road in seclusion is the excellent means to obtain your bearings.

We took a lengthy walk lengthwise to begin intending our day. There are a number of strolling roads next to Avenida Central in San Jose, as well as there are several strolling roads that branch of from the primary Central Avenue so obtain shed as well as walk as long as you like along the auto-free roads to really feel the power of the city. There’s excellent purchasing along right here too.

If you take pleasure in strolling, this food as well as strolling scenic tour is an incredibly means to learn more about Costa Rican society as well as food where you’ll fulfill in the early morning for coffee at a coffee shop in Borbon Market prior to triggering to among San Jose’s leading destinations, Central Market to example regional foods as well as fruits.

2. Plaza de la Cultura 

Plaza de la Cultura San Jose

The Plaza de la Cultura is the primary square of San Jose as well as a wonderful location to start your San Jose expedition. In the heart of the plaza, suppliers market crafts, road entertainers reveal their abilities, as well as residents market birdseed to feed the pigeons gathering to the square. If you desire that traditional photo of a flock of birds skyrocketing off at your feet, this is the location to do it.

There are lots of points to do in this field of San Jose that you can quickly stroll to from the plaza. Many of the leading views like the Central Market, Museo de Jade, Teatro Nacional de Costa Rica, as well as Gold Museum are all within strolling range of this plaza. It is right here you’ll locate common fast-food chains discovered in every city worldwide as well as it’s a wonderful location to get some gelato to take with you as you check out.

Don’t be upset by all the authorities walking possessing weapons, they exist as a deterrent. Plaza de la Cultura is extremely risk-free as well as it is a place where several scenic tour teams assemble. The authorities exist to make certain everybody really feels risk-free as well as due to that, it is most likely the best location in all of San Jose.

3. Teatro Nacional de Costa Rica – National Theater of Costa Rica

National Theater of Costa Rica in San Jose
Exterior National Theater

The National Theater of Costa Rica (Teatro Nacional de Costa Rica) is the focal point of San Jose as well as among the city’s leading destinations. It’s a conference area for trips as well as close friends to assemble for coffee as well as it is the Grande Dame of the community. Dating back to 1897, this historical structure is a must-see for any person going to San Jose.

The coffee barons of the 19th century went for it importing marble from Italy, as well as appointing extravagant frescoes as well as sculptures of Beethoven as well as Spanish Playwright. The initial sculptures have actually been relocated inside for anxiety of quakes as well as disintegration so make certain to adopt the complete experience.

The grand cinema is stunning from the outdoors with its neoclassical exterior, rock columns, yet inside you’ll locate a luxuriant inside. The initial point you’ll see is a paint by Aleardo Villa. Alegoría al Café y el Banano (Allegory of Coffee as well as Bananas) is devoted to the Costa Rican coffee as well as banana harvest.

Guided Tours

Tours are supplied for $11 USD as well as are supplied per hour in both Spanish as well as English. You’ll learn more about the background as well as style as well as they take you on a backstage scenic tour to see every space as well as cranny. If you don’t intend to take an excursion, you can see an efficiency. This is the premier cinema in Costa Rica as well as you’ll have the ability to see every little thing from symphonic music to comics as well as dancing efficiencies. Note: No images are allowed the cinema.

4. Coffee Shop at National Theater

Coffee Bar inside National Theater San Jose

If you don’t have time for the 45-minute scenic tour, or if you don’t intend to invest the $11, there is a coffeehouse in the entrance hall where you can take pleasure in a tasty Costa Rican coffee. If you ask to make use of the washroom, you can take a peek inside the cinema itself. They’ll offer you a pass to manage safety and security, yet don’t invest as well lengthy sticking around or you’ll obtain captured! The coffee bar is hectic, so make certain to get a table as quickly as you see one.

5. Take a Free Walking Tour

Free Walking tours in San Jose Costa Rica
Free trips emphasize San Jose’s leading destinations

Each day at 9:00 am, there is a complimentary strolling scenic tour led by regional overviews. They are supplied in both Spanish as well as English. Patrons fulfill before the Teatro Nacional as well as join their overview with the red vest as well as umbrella for a social scenic tour of San Jose. The complimentary trips don’t ever before leave at 12:30, they leave at 9:00 am on a daily basis.

Taking the complimentary strolling scenic tour of San Jose is among the most effective methods to obtain familiarized with the city. We recommend doing this on your initial day. It takes you to all the city highlights so you can obtain your bearings as well as make a decision where to find back to in the coming days. The regional overviews are well-informed as well as pleasant as well as deal ideas as well as info on where to consume as well as what else to see in San Jose. The scenic tour is complimentary, yet make certain to reveal your overview some love at the end. Suggested Tip: $10 USD each.

Looking for Day Tours from San Jose Costa Rica? These are one of the most preferred!

San Jose is a wonderful location to make a base for Costa Rican outing. With its main place, you can quickly reach see the cloud woodland, volcanoes, as well as falls.

We have a complete summary of San Jose’s finest outing at the end of this message. You can avoid right here to surf San Jose outing

Beware, there is a copycat overview that stands apart before the cinema advertising his very own strolling scenic tour. He almost obtained us the day prior to informing us that the complimentary strolling scenic tour begins at 12:30. We turned up to our resort area to go down some things off as well as sought out just how much we must tip. The initial point we saw was his face cautioning that he was a fraudulence.

6. Museo Nacional de Costa – National Museum

Costa Rica National Museum in San Jose
Museo Nacional de Costa from Plaza de la Democracia

San Jose is full of galleries showcasing Costa Rican background as well as society as well as the National Museum (Museo Nacional de Costa) is San Jose’s top gallery. The National Museum was initially a citadel as well as these were its military barracks that offer a good review of the background of Costa Rica with pre-Columbian artefacts to the abolishment of the Costa Rican Army in 1948. We discovered this truth interesting. Costa Rico has actually not had an army given that its civil battle in 1948.

Military History as well as Bullet Holes of National Museum

Military Museum in San Jose Costa Rica

If you aren’t a gallery follower, you still should walk along the beyond the Museo Nacional de Costa to see the bullet openings in the wall surfaces as well as watchtowers. It was a tough fight as well as the marks still reveal from the 1948 Civil War.

As the previous head of state, as well as Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Oscar Arias Sanchez claimed, “Military solutions to conflicts should be the last, last resort, Here, conflicts are resolved at a negotiating table.”

7. Stone Sphere – National Museum

Stone Sphere in San Jose Costa Rica

The strange rock rounds of Costa Rica go back to 200BC as well as there have actually been greater than 300 of them found throughout the nation. You wear’ need to go searching for them however, there is one situated ideal midtown San Jose in the National Museum. The almost flawlessly smooth round rests on screen in a glass covering.

The rock rounds around Costa Rica array in dimension from a couple of centimeters to 2 meters in size as well as they consider approximately 15,000 kg (16 lots). They are so remarkable that some get on screen all over the world consisting of 2 in the United States. Our overview informed us that prize seekers blew them up when they were initial found assuming that gold was concealed within.

8. Pre Columbian Gold Museum of San Jose

Gold Museum in San Jose
Pre Columbian Gold Museum

Located in the heart of midtown San Jose under San Josés primary square, The Pre-Columbian Gold Museum is among one of the most preferred galleries to go to in San Jose. Some of the steel things on screen go back to 500 ADVERTISEMENT. Here you’ll find out of what day-to-day life resembled centuries earlier. It additionally traces Costa Rica’s background from 500 advertisement to the 1500s when the Spanish showed up. This gallery concentrates on the function as well as uses gold extending from Pre Columbian times. The Gold Museum is among the leading destinations in San Jose with greater than 1600 items of gold artefacts on screen.

9. Jade Museum

Jade Museum in San Jose
Jade Museum San Jose

The Jade Museum is yet one more gallery that deserves going to in San Jose. It houses the biggest collection of pre-Columbian jade worldwide. Museu de Jade lies simply behind the National Museum so if you have additional time, you can appear there. The jade on screen go back to 500 BC. The Pre-Columbians patronized the Mayans throughout this duration as well as this unusual rock played a huge function in the every day life of Pre-Columbian Costa Rica. It’s situated simply throughout the Plaza de la Democracia from the National Museum.

10. Children’s Museum

If you are searching for points to do in San Jose with youngsters, make your means to the Children’s Museum. The Museo de Los Ninos is preferred for households full with dinosaurs, scientific research display screens, old Egypt, as well as Costa Rican background. What makes it great are the interactive display screens.

Museum of Natural Sciences – Considered among the most effective in Latin America for pets, archeology, as well as dinosaurs.

11. Mercado Central – Central Market

Central Market Downtown San Jose
Central Market – Mercado Central

When looking for mementos, Central Market is a great location to begin. Central Market is among Costa Rica’s earliest spots going back to 1821. It is full of food stalls as well as keepsake stores, yet it is additionally an area to massage arm joints with the residents. Locals routinely patronize this market as well as with its several food delays you can example some genuine Costa Rican food at deal rates. You’ll see a great deal of individuals resting on feceses consuming typical food, so why not join them as well as greet!

12. California Boulevard

California Boulevard San Jose Costa Rica

Another beautiful strolling road in San Jose can be discovered before the National Museum. California Boulevard, also known as Calle 17 is a gorgeous course that was made to resemble the roads of Los Angeles. This strolling road is much quieter than Avenida Central as well as its rock course is lined with hand trees as well as early american style. This is where you’ll locate several federal government structures, exclusive homes, as well as education and learnings facilities.

13. Graffiti Wall

Graffiti Wall in San Jose

Along California Boulevard, is where you’ll additionally uncover stunning road art. Like several cities all over the world, road tagging was coming to be a trouble in San Jose, so they supplied musicians a possibility to have an item of the wall surface to commemorate their expression of art. We were informed that each musician auditioned for their area as well as they were given an item of wall surface for 5 years.

14. National Park of San Jose

National Park in San Jose

It is a silent as well as little park, yet the National Park of San Jose is historical. It is additionally a place where you can watch the train. At once, trains were a preferred means to navigate Costa Rica, yet corruption stopped them when individuals in power had a beneficial interest in vehicle production. Today, Costa Rica is working with reconstructing the railway as well as quickly visitors will certainly have the ability to navigate the nation in the convenience of trains.

15. Sa Casa Del Cacao – Chocolate Factory

Visiting a Chocolate Factory Costa Rica San Jose

Chocolate was when treasured as long as gold in Costa Rica as well as it was when the leading export of the nation. In Costa Rica’s background, delicious chocolate was made use of in native events as well as was so crucial it was made use of as money. Chocolate manufacturing is recovering in Costa Rica, as well as the Casa del Cacao (The Costa Rican House of Chocolate) is a great location to experience a few of that delicious chocolate society. It provides delicious chocolate workshops as well as is a wonderful location to get some real Costa Rican delicious chocolate. Located in midtown San Jose you can example 2 of Costa Rica’s reward exports, delicious chocolate as well as coffee.

16. Berlin Wall

Piece of Berlin Wall in San Jose Costa Rica

One of the most effective points to see in San Jose that no one understands about is the Berlin Wall. Located behind the Foreign Ministry is an item of the Berlin Wall. It’s a charming yellow structure, so you can’t miss it if you are walking around the city. We constantly like discovering items of the Berlin Wall in our journeys. We were shocked to locate that San Jose had an item. You truly require to seek it out as it isn’t specifically on screen as well as lots of people stroll precisely by. We needed to take images with the fencing to see it. The wall surface was a present to Costa Rica after Costa Rica’s Foreign Minister asked for it to celebrate the 150th wedding anniversary of its international ministry. Now you recognize, as well as right here are a lot more great Costa Rica Facts to look into.

17. Metropolitan Cathedral of San Jose

Metropolitan Cathedral San Jose Costa Rica

San Jose’s most stunning sanctuary lies in the heart of the city. The Metropolitan Cathedral of San Jose’s doors are open to site visitors, yet be considerate as it is a functioning sanctuary. Each time we checked out, mass was occurring as well as worshippers were being in the benches. Its stunning style is a mix of baroque, neoclassical, as well as Greek orthodox. After a collection of quakes, it was restored in 1871 as well as has actually rated worshippers as well as site visitors since. It is such a crucial church that Pope John Paul II checked out the sanctuary in 1983.

18. Central Park

Central Park San Jose

If you are searching for that Instagrammable city indication that can be identified throughout the globe, this is the location to go. It’s much less congested than the San Jose indication at Plaza de la Cultura as well as is a good little park to pause from taking in the sights.

Central Park is San Jose’s earliest public area as well as it lies next to the Metropolitan Cathedral. Street entertainers can be discovered along with service individuals consuming their lunches as well as youngsters skate boarding on the concrete. There’s some fascinating style to look into right here as well as it’s a preferred dangling area for residents.

19. View from the Bar at Gran Hotel

View from Gran Hotel San Jose Costa Rica

The Gran Hotel is one of the most historical resort in the city as well as is a San Jose destination in its very own right. Even if you are not remaining there it deserves increasing to bench for an alcoholic drink or for supper. The historical resort has actually been totally restored as well as is extremely trendy.

Built-in 1930, The Gran Hotel has one of the most sought after place in San Jose. It’s situated straight on the Plaza de la Cultura with the National Theater, Gold Museum, as well as Avenida Central situated following door. When eating in its dining establishment you are dealt with to among San Jose’s finest sights.

JFK remained right here throughout his check out yet he wouldn’t identify it, its improvements have actually developed a modern-day style that makes you intend to hang around for days. Our area was very trendy, the food was superb as well as the atmosphere was easily classy. The personnel is very pleasant as well. Make certain to direct to the leading flooring to the piano bar for a glass of a glass of wine ignoring the city of San Jose.

20. Chinatown

Chinatown San Jose Costa Rica

A wacky quit on our complimentary strolling scenic tour was San Jose’s Chinatown. Our overview informed us that the strategy is to develop it up a lot more as well as make it a real location in the city. We didn’t see any kind of Chinese throughout our see to San Jose, yet they do have a photogenic Chinatown gateway, so I think there will certainly be a lot more in the future.

Metallic Building San Jose

Taking the complimentary strolling scenic tour aided us value the structures around the city. We dropped in front of several to find out of their background. This pink metal structure was motivated by the Eiffel Tower. It was in fact sent out from Europe in items as well as was created item by item. Today it is an independent school, yet it is absolutely worth quiting to see. There is a gorgeous row of rubber trees that creates a charming photo.

Things to do in San Jose Costa Rica at Night

Nightlife San Jose Costa Rica

Food as well as Culture Night Tour

If you are searching for points to do in San Jose during the night, you can reserve this food as well as society evening scenic tour of San José. Follow your professional overview to see crucial social websites complied with by a standard supper with a glass of wine or beer pairings. You’ll begin at Morazán Park to learn more about post-colonial Costa Rican background. Then continue a strolling scenic tour to the Metallic Building, the Yellow residence from Spain Park, as well as the earliest household area in San José, Barrio Escalante.

If you intend to get a beer in San Jose by yourself, check out The Costa Rica Beer Factory is a wonderful location to example some regional mixtures.

San Jose Night Tour

This extremely ranked scenic tour is an enjoyable means to experience San Jose far from the daytime groups. Meeting at La Sabana Metropolitan Park you’ll obtain a summary of San Jose’s background as you go to a few of San Jose’s leading destinations like the National Stadium, University of Costa Rica, as well as the  Teatro Nacional de Costa Rica. At completion of the scenic tour, you’ll take pleasure in a standard Costa Rican supper.

Where to Eat in San Jose

Where to eat in San Jose Costa Rica

Being Costa Rica’s funding city, there are lots of superb food options all over San Jose. You can quickly simply ask your overview or resort for suggestions. Another means we like to locate excellent dining establishments is to search for where the residents are. If it is full of normal clients, you can be certain it is great. Here are a couple of suggestions.

Soda Tapia – Soda Tapia is an awesome retro-style restaurant 100 years of ages that is preferred with the residents as well as has an enjoyable ambiance.

Cafeteria Incluyeme – This special lunchroom uses individuals with handicaps developing an area where they can really feel comfy, as well as gain work. It’s recognized for its tasty coffee, shakes. It’s situated near the Chinese gateway.

Tortilleria – This preferred area for residents has tasty tortillas. While there, make certain to attempt the regional lemonade-like beverage called Cas.

Top of the Hilton – This was superb great eating with an amazing sight.

Day Trips from San Jose

Manuel Antonio National Park

This extremely ranked day scenic tour from San Jose takes you to the white sand coastlines of the world-famous Manuel Antonio National Park. It’s a complete day scenic tour loaded with tasks where you’ll be gotten in the early morning as well as heading quit at the most significant fruit market in Costa Rica as well as a quit at crocodile bridge to watch among the nation’s biggest crocodile populaces. The remainder of the day is invested looking for wild animals such as sloths as well as macaws, taking pleasure in a few of Costa Rica’s most stunning coastlines as well as taking pleasure in the jungle treking routes of Manuel Antonio National Park.

La Paz Waterfall Gardens & Poas Volcano

There is no scarcity of points to do about San Jose, as well as the Poas Volcano National Park & La Paz Waterfall Gardens are among the leading outing from San Jose.

This preferred scenic tour quits at La Paz Waterfall Gardens which homes Costa Rica’s biggest pet refuge where 100 types of saved wild animals lives are housed in the maintain. Enjoy a few of the most effective walking routes around San José as you take pleasure in falls within the jungle. This assisted scenic tour will certainly additionally take you along treking routes to the Botos Lagoon as well as climb the crater to 2 crater lakes up where you’ll witness among the globe’s most acidic lakes, Laguna Caliente. More information right here.

Hanging Bridges

This scenic tour for nature enthusiasts’ – is a full-day scenic tour that takes you to among Costa Rica’s most popular destinations. The Monteverde Hanging Bridges takes you over the cloud woodland where you’ll observe wild animals in their all-natural environment. It’s a lengthy drive as well as it is recommended to in fact invest greater than someday there, yet if you have actually restricted time, this scenic tour is a wonderful choice.

Getting Around San Jose

Getting around San Jose Costa Rica

San Jose is a really walkable city as well as by remaining midtown San Jose, we might stroll to a lot of the leading destinations. For various other journeys around San Jose, we made use of Uber, it was extremely practical as well as extremely budget-friendly.

To reach the airport terminal, we made use of Uber. It was risk-free, quick, as well as budget-friendly. It cost us $15 USD consisting of the pointer. Note: we review that ideas are not anticipated by Uber vehicle drivers in San Jose, yet we have a behavior of tipping. (gotta maintain that high Uber celebrity ranking)**

You might intend to reserve a transfer ahead of time to prevent any kind of headaches. When going to a brand-new city, we constantly really feel a lot more comfy when we have our chauffeur awaiting us at arrivals with our nameplate. They take us straight from the airport terminal to our resort as well as it deserves the additional price. You can examine airport terminal transfers right here.

And there you have it, every one of the most effective points to do in San Jose. One day truly isn’t sufficient so when intending your journey to Costa Rica, make certain to invest a minimum of 3 days in its funding city.

If you are intending on mosting likely to Costa Rica to discover its stunning coastlines, cloud woodland, volcanoes, as well as views, make certain to place San Jose on your listing. You’ll appreciate this historical metropolitan facility.

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