Vacationing in the rainy wet season, Costa Rica

Let's talk about the rainy or wet season and what you can expect when vacationing during this quieter time of the year. The beginning of the rainy season is typically around the middle of April. That's often when the first rain in 4 or 5 months occurs. It can start out lightly and build in intensity over the following months. There is usually still plenty of sunshine.

When the first 'real' rains hit you can expect 2 things. First - greater humidity and subsequently more moisture in the air. Over the next 6 to 8 weeks the trees will regrow their leaves, the under ground water table will begin to rise, and the temperatures and the land will start to cool.

Next, and impossible to miss, is the 'Tajalin invasion'. After the first rains a species of purple and orange land crab comes down from the mountains. You'll see them everywhere. With Costa Rican housing typically being constructed with wide open spaces and few closed doors and windows you can expect to share you space with the 'Tajalines'. It's not uncommon for unsuspecting tourists to return home to find a crab or two in their suitcase. Some seasons they'll appear in plague-proportions. You'll also see them on the roads, especially at night, and their numbers are so great that it is impossible for vehicles to avoid them. After a few weeks their numbers will diminish and by June you will hardly see any.

It is not uncommon to experience an 'Indian summer' for a few weeks in June or July. This is one of the nicest times of the year because the air is cooler, the vegetation is lush and vibrant, and the beaches are typically quieter. In Santa Tersesa you'll find fewer tourists and greater room availability. Arriving without a reservation at this time of year is possible.

With increasing rains, the smaller less frequently used roads deteriorate in quality and many routes become impassible. All roads become rougher as run-off water from the rains create divots, holes, and ruts. Travel with caution at any time of year but in the wet season especially, you'll need a four-wheeled drive to get around. Roads usually aren't graded and repaired until December or January when the rain has ended.

The months of September, October, and November typically have consistent, and frequently heavy, rains in the afternoons and overnight. Experiencing overcast days with patchy sunshine in between downpours is common.

Activities that become more enjoyable during the wet season include -

  • Quad biking - in the dry season the dust can become prohibitive. In the wet season this becomes a great way of navigating muddy roads,
  • Visiting waterfalls and swimming holes,
  • Surfing - the rainy season provides more swell and overcast skys reducing sun burns,
  • Sports fishing - cooler waters between October and December can result in more abundance of game like yellow fin, wahoo, amber jack, and mahi mahi.

So don't let the rains put you off. Contact us about your rainy season vacation and enjoy the vibrancy and serenity that a clean and green Costa Rica has to offer.