6 Essential Things You NEED to Try in Costa Rica

Lindsey Williams is a student at University of Richmond and an ISA Featured Blogger. She studied abroad with ISA Service- Learning in Heredia, Costa Rica.

The very first thing that you need to try when you get to Costa Rica is the amazing food that they have here! From the daily essentials of rice and beans to the delicious “pasteles” that they occasionally have, you have to try it all! Back in the United States, my favorite meals consisted of rice, beans, chicken, and veggies, so it was no surprise that I fell in love with the food here. I’ve even tried some fruits and vegetables that I can’t pronounce…it just makes for more of an adventure!

The next thing you need to try is a little more “outdoorsy” and requires some bug spray and your ability to concur your fear of heights! You definitely have to go canyoning in the rainforests of Costa Rica. While canyoning, you get to go rappelling down waterfalls, zip-lining, and swimming in the waterfalls. The sights were amazing and the experience is one that I will never forget.

A very important thing that you need to try while you’re here in Costa Rica is talking with the natives of the country in Spanish. Although you might not speak fluent Spanish and your language skills may be minimal, the people of Costa Rica appreciate it so much if you at least try to talk to them in their native tongue. Although it is definitely difficult, it is the best way of learning the language.

Another thing that you have to do is watch a sunrise on a Costa Rican beach! Yes, you can watch the sunrise anywhere, but it is cool to experience this everyday occurrence in a different country. It is so peaceful and the pictures that you can get are incredible!

One of my final things to suggest that you do when you travel to Costa Rica is to go and see a soccer game! Whether it is watching it on TV at a sports bar or seeing it live in the stadium, the atmosphere is electric and contagious. I personally prefer watching games in the HUGE national stadium, but that’s just coming from a die-hard soccer fan!

I’ve saved the best for last…while in Costa Rica, you have to go WHITE WATER RAFTING! I think this was one of the most fun experiences I’ve ever had in my life, and that’s not an exaggeration! The staff there was so friendly and helpful. They made the experience much more enjoyable by joking around with us, telling us about their lives, and telling us stories that they have made throughout their journey in Costa Rica. They made sure that we were having a good time, but also that we were staying safe. They were well experienced and let us know when difficult rapids were coming our way. I also lucked out by being with a group of individuals who spoke English and were so much fun to be around. Even though I was dead tired after 6 hours of paddling, it was 100% worth it!

The world awaits…discover it.

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