The Central Valley is the heart of Costa Rica, not only does the area contain the capital of San José (with its many bars and restaurants) but also the high mountains which are home to traditional coffee plantations and striking views. The Central Valley is also surrounded by impressive volcanic mountain ranges, especially the Cordillera Central on the eastern side of the valley.

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Will and Kate B are here to help give you the inside track.

Why we think you’ll love it

  • Not only is it a great spot to relax and unwind - there's also lots to do, including visiting volcanoes, cloud forests and coffee plantations

Luxury Holidays to the Central Valley and San José: the Detail

About three quarters of the country's residents live in The Central Valley, and you can see why - Costa Rica's geographical heart is home to San José, coffee plantations, volcanoes, and rapids ideal for rafting. The region has a very pleasant climate, due to its altitude, meaning that days are warm without being sticky, and nights are comfortably cool. It is certainly worth spending additional time exploring this lush area, whether white water rafting down the Pacuare river, visiting the active Poas volcano, or learning about coffee roasting and the cultivation process of macademia nuts.


Top picks for Central Valley

Xandari Resort & Spa

Xandari Resort & Spa

Central Valley

On a former coffee plantation just 20 minutes from San José's airport makes Xandari a great spot to relax and unwind after a long flight, before setting off to explore Costa Rica.

Where to stay

 Finca Rosa Blanca

Finca Rosa Blanca

Central Valley

Winner of many Responsible Tourism awards and accolades, this is a working farm and coffee plantation with its roots firmly in sustainability.

Where to stay

La Paz Waterfall Gardens

La Paz Waterfall Gardens

Central Valley

Searching for birds and big cats in the wild is all well and good, but at the La Paz Waterfall Gardens you’ll find them all conveniently in one place so you are guaranteed some spectacular close ups of many of the country’s most rare and endangered species.

What to do

 Hotel Grano de Oro

Hotel Grano de Oro

Central Valley

Located on a quiet street just off Paseo Colón, this is an oasis within the heart of a bustling city.

Where to stay

Volcano Tours

Volcano Tours

Central Valley

There are two highly impressive volcanoes within easy reach of San Jose, and well worth day trip's for anyone staying in Costa Rica for more than a flying visit.

What to do

Pacuare Jungle Lodge

Pacuare Jungle Lodge

Central Valley

Nestled within pristine rainforest on the banks of the Pacuare River, Pacuare Jungle Lodge aims to withdraw its guests from the modern world, and all its technological trappings, and bring them back to nature, in an idyllic setting.

Where to stay

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