Top 5 unusual attractions in Costa Rica

photo by hotshojen on Flickr

Costa Rica is amazingly diverse and you could fill entire books just with reasons to visit the country, but most of the travelers who end up in Costa Rica are lured by the promise of stunning scenery, interesting hikes, nature and wildlife. But as fun as it is to spend your time in Costa Rica exploring famous sights like Arenal Volcano, Manuel Antonio National Park or Corcovado, there are several other attractions that also deserve your attention despite not being in the limelight. If you want to see a side of Costa Rica that is entertaining and exciting despite not being always in the limelight, here are our picks for the top 5 unusual attractions in Costa Rica.

Aviarios del Caribe & Buttercup Center, Cahuita

Spotting wildlife is Cost Rica is the easiest thing in the world if you are in the right place at the right time, and this small wildlife sanctuary not far from Cahuita is a good choice. The absolute star of this reserve is Buttercup, an orphaned sloth that was ‘adopted’ by the founders of the reserve, Judy and Luis Arroyo. Today there are many other sloths that have been rescued by the reserve and they live happily at the center, to the delight of sloth fans.

Catie, Turrialba

photo by EverJean on Flickr

Visiting an agricultural research center might not sound like a lot of fun for anyone but those who are interested in this subject, but Catie in Turrialba, a world famous agronomy center, has some very interesting guided tour that will convince you that agricultural research is actually quite exciting. You get to see laboratories and seed banks, greenhouses and experimental plots, as well as a lovely garden with a pond.

Bat Jungle, Monteverde

Bats are a much maligned species that get a lot less love than fuzzier and cuter animals, but the Bat Jungle in Monteverde is your chance to discover the fascinating (and rather adorable) world of bats. You can learn about echolocation, see the bat habitat and find out more about these animals with the help of interesting and fun displays.

El Jardin de las Mariposas, Monteverde

photo by Chadica on Flickr

Few people would say no to a colorful display of butterflies, especially if you only need to see their beautiful wings, without a closer look to the insects. But El Jardin de las Mariposas takes a more scientific approach to butterflies, so amateur naturalists can learn more about these creatures through tours and examinations of butterfly eggs, pupae and caterpillars. After an introduction about the life cycle of butterflies, you are free to roam the butterfly enclosures and enjoy the sight of hundreds of colorful butterflies.

Cacao Trails, Cahuita

If you like chocolate and cocoa, a visit to the Cacao Trails garden is a must while you are in Costa Rica. You get an inside look into the workings of a cacao plantation, and learn about the various medicinal plants that grow in Costa Rica. The rainforest trails are magnificent, and you also get to find out about various traditions surrounding cocoa in Costa Rica – it might not be the kind of attraction that everyone is drawn to, but it is definitely in the top 5 unusual attractions in Costa Rica.


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