The Central American country of Costa Rica lies beautiful with all its volcanoes, magnificent beaches, and stark landscapes. Along with the beautiful scenery, a plethora of activities, delicious food, rich culture and varied wildlife have made Costa Rica one of the most popular tourist destinations in Central America. Costa Rica is one of those countries where people just love to visit again and again. In fact, there are so many things to do in this country, that deciding what to do and which places to visit can prove to be quite a daunting task for people who are visiting this beautiful country for the first time. However to point you towards the right direction, here are the top five Costa Rica attractions which you must visit during your trip to Costa Rica.
1. Arenal Volcano
Probably the most visited volcano in the whole of Costa Rica, Arenal is one of the most famous CostaRica attractions that you will visit during your trip. The volcano became famous worldwide due to its almost daily eruptions till it entered a resting period since 2010. You will get to see a lot of natural hot water springs in this area, thanks to the geothermal activity of Arenal.
2. Tortuguero National Park
Tortuguero National Park consists of an elaborate network of water canals that snake their way through lush jungles and coastal wetlands of the east coast of Costa Rica. Considered the number one eco-tourist destination of Costa Rica, a visit to this Costa Rica attraction is also must during your trip. Float through the canals from the comfort of your private boat, experience the beauty of the green jungle that surrounds you. You will encounter a lot of different wildlife, and remember to visit ‘The Land of the Turtle’, where the locals dedicate their lives to turtle conservation.
3. Mal País and Santa Teresa
If you are in the mood for some surfing, then visiting these two Costa Rica attractions is a must for you. Situated at the tip of Peninsula de Nicoya, these two places offer some of the best surf you can find in the country. These destinations used to be quite difficult to reach in the past, and finding accommodation was quite difficult. However, the improved road conditions and tourist infrastructure have made these locations much more accessible and tourist friendly.
4. Cerro Chirripo
Cerro Chirripo is the highest peak of Costa Rica. The hike to the top is quite demanding. But if you want to get away from all the hustle and bustle of Costa Rica, and enjoy some of the most incredible panoramic views of both the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, then a trip to this beautiful destination is a must for you.
5. Manuel Antonio National Park
The Manuel Antonio National Park boasts one of the best beaches you can find in Costa Rica. It is one of those Costa Rica attractions which will show you the Costa Rica you imagined in your dreams. Watch the different types of monkeys as the leap through the forest canopy, spend a relaxing day on the beach and take a leisurely walk along the palm-lined shoreline.
You’ve probably heard the saying, “A bad day in the water is better than a good day working,” but what if days filled with bad surfing conditions were few and far between? You need to find a beach with an amazing surf, and it might be easier than you think. Stop randomly chasing the waves, and check out some of the most gnarly surfing destinations in the world.
1. Oahu, Hawaii
There’s a reason that Hawaii’s Banzai Pipeline is a fixture on the surf tour circuit — it’s one of the heaviest waves in the world. The flawless water tube hovers more than 19 feet over the shallow base of the reef that lines the shores of Ehukai Beach on Oahu’s north shore. Unfortunately, most surfers will never be good enough to surf the Pipeline. The granddaddy of all waves is also one of the most dangerous. If you need more practice, Honolua Bay in Maui. If you’re lucky, you might see a whale or two from your board.
2. La Jolla, California
Southern California has several excellent surfing spots, but La Jolla, CA is one of the best because it’s home to several surfing spots with varied wave levels. If you’re a beginner, check out La Jolla Shores. It’s a pretty basic beach, but its reliable, predictable waves make it a favorite among local surfers. To find the gnarliest waves in the area, head to La Jolla Cove. Some of the largest waves in the area break just outside the protected part of the cove.
3. Eastern Cape, South Africa
When traveling to South Africa consider staying in Jeffrey’s Bay in the Eastern Cape province. The laid-back beach town is about an hour’s drive from Port Elizabeth — one of the largest cities in South Africa. Jeffrey’s Bay has some of the best waves in the world, according to Surfer Today, and it’s known for its long, fast barrels and intense breaks. The bay itself is divided into sections, making it easy to choose a wave that matches your skill level. Find Magna Tubes, Kitchen Windows, Boneyards, and the craziest of them all, Supertubes.
4. Raglan, New Zealand
Raglan, New Zealand burst onto the surf scene in the 1960s when it was used as a filming location for the surf classic, “The Endless Summer.” The sleepy surf town is filled with cafes and bars that have surfing videos on continuous play. Manu Bay is the most popular surf spot in the area. It’s a long, left-hand point break along a boulder beach that has waves that start as a hollow drop before going into a barrel, and finally into a long walled section. On epic days, surfers can surf from Indicators straight through Whale Bay to Manu Bay.
5. Gold Coast, Australia
Gold Coast, a coastal city in Queensland, is a well-known surfing mecca. The surfer’s paradise is home to over 40 miles of pristine beaches and four epic point breaks, including the Superbreak. Generally considered one of the best surfing spots on the Gold Coast, the Superbreak, is a right-hand wave that barrels regularly — it’s known for producing heavy, hollow barrels only suitable for experienced surfers. Surfers also flock to Currumbin Alley. Known simply as the Alley, the popular surf spot produces consistent, world-class waves that advanced surfers love, as well as whitewash waves ideal for beginners.
The key to finding an amazing surf spot is finding beaches that produce surf-worthy waves on a regular basis. This way, when you’re ready to hang ten, the waves are ready for you.
Located in Central America, El Salvador is the tiniest and one of the most beautiful hidden gems of Central America. Once considered a dangerous Central American destination for tourists, the country suffers from some seriously bad press. However, most of the country is not affected by the troubles, and a trip to El Salvador can be completely safe if you keep a few things in mind. And if you are adventurous enough to travel to El Salvador, you will be thoroughly impressed by the amount of beauty this tiny country has to offer. From top-class surfing on empty beaches, Spanish colonial towns, coffee plantations by the volcano – the untouched El Salvador tourist attractions will surely win you over. There are a lot of things for you to do in El Salvador, and here are five of them which you must try out.
5. Explore the Mayan Ruins
Like many other Central American countries, El Salvador is also blessed with a number of fascinating Mayan ruins. The country houses Joya de Ceren, which was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The Mayan town of Joya de Ceren was buried in volcanic ash and thus perfectly preserved. Although only a few structures have been excavated, it is one of the must visit El Salvador tourist attractions to have a look through the time into the daily lives of the Mayan people.
4. Visit the Colonial Towns
Most of the original colonial architectures of El Salvador have already been destroyed due to the major earthquakes this country faces on a regular basis. Still visiting the colorful Spanish colonial towns is a must do activity when you travel to El Salvador. And among them, the town of Suchitoto withstood the test of time and the earthquakes. One of the must visit El Salvador tourist attractions, this town is filled with boutique hotels, beautiful shops, and gourmet restaurants.
3. Visit Los Planes de Renderos
Los Planes de Renderos is one of the must visit El Salvador tourist attractions if you want to experience some of the most spectacular views of the city of San Salvador. Have some pupusas – a Salvadorian delicacy – and watch some of the traditional folk dances which are being performed in the area.
2. Hike the Volcanos
El Salvador, albeit a tiny country, houses 26 volcanoes, and a third of them are active. Many of them are also part of national parks where you can visit. The El Boqueron Crater is located just out the capital city, San Salvador. You can take a short hike to the rim, or go on a longer tour to explore the crater’s amazing wildlife and ecosystem. From Ilamatepec, Tehutepec, Izalco, Quetzaltepec – just take your pick and hike to one of these beauties when you travel to El Salvador.
1. Enjoy Diving or Surfing
El Salvador gives you the rare opportunity to engage in various water activities in world class conditions, but without the crowd that comes with it. Surf your heart out at one of the empty, black sand beaches, or dive at any one of the stunning dive sites you can find. From beginners to enthusiasts, El Salvador has dive and surf sites for everybody, and that’s why it is one of the must try El Salvador tourist attractions.
Guatemala, the most diverse tourist destination of Central America, has been enticing travelers for centuries. Considered the Mayan heart of Central America, this beautiful country offers a lot more than the Mayan wonders though. Guatemala probably has the most tightly packed must do things and must visit sights than anywhere in Central America. From archeological wonders of Mayan ruins to colonial towns, pristine jungles, endless hiking trails and ancient culture – there are simply a ton of things for you to do when you travel to Guatemala. To help plan your tour and avoid the crowd that is slowly discovering this beautiful country, here are the top four things which you must try out when you travel to Guatemala.
1. Visit Tikal National Park
The Tikal National Park is the most famous cultural and natural tourist attraction of Guatemala. Built around the largest excavated Mayan site of Guatemala, the Tikal ruins will give you a sense of adventure like no other. Visit the park early and stroll through the empty ruins, and find yourself lost in the wondrous structures of a long-lost era.
2. Visit the Yaxha Mayan Ruins
The Yaxha Mayan Ruins are much more secluded than the Tikal Ruins. Hike the serene trail through the jungle before reaching the beautiful Mayan complexes. These ruins are smaller when compared to Tikal, but they are much less commercialized and less crowded. You can spend your time looking at the marvelous structures, the ancient drawings, and the carved symbols. If you are interested in Mayan history and culture, visiting this site is a must when you travel to Guatemala.
3. Roast Some Marshmallows on Top of Pacaya Volcano
The Pacaya volcano is one of the most accessible volcanos in Guatemala, which makes it one of the most popular destination. The volcano is still active, which makes the hike to the top of this volcano a must-do activity when you travel to Guatemala. You can hike the steep trail to the top of the volcano in about one and a half hour, and you can indeed roast some marshmallows in the heat which gets eliminated from the ground of the summit.
4. Bask in the Natural Beauty of Semuc Champey
Located near the little town of Lanquin, Semuc Champey is one of the most beautiful natural wonders of Guatemala. You have to travel deep into the jungle to come face to face with this massive natural limestone formation. The formation is covering an underground river, which forms a number of stepped swimming pools. There are a lot of hiking trails, lookout points and guided tours in this area. Apart from all of these, there are many tours to the Kan’Ba caves as well. There you can swim along an underground river. The place is so dark that you will have to hold a candle above your head to light your way as you swim. Visiting here is another one of the must to activities when you travel to Guatemala.
If you have booked a scenic helicopter charter, it will no doubt include some amazing scenery, and in order to get the most from this unique experience, there are certain things one should know in advance, and with that in mind, here are some essential tips to help make the big day truly memorable.
No Fear of Flying – Some people are nervous about flying as it is, and a helicopter is a different craft, which might make things worse. The truth is, helicopter rides have never been safer, and the highly experienced pilot will have flown the route hundreds of times. This fear might be slight, but nevertheless it can slight a memorable day, and you can rest assured that the helicopter is in excellent order and is flown by an expert.
Dress Suitably – This is essential, and the ideal apparel is long trousers and a light jacket. Avoid jewellery, sunglasses, hats and flip flops, and it is a good ideal to only have essentials on your person. You may wish to have your smartphone with you to film the event, which most people prefer, and the tour company would provide a high resolution film of the entire flight and for a little extra, you can take it home with you. You should not carry anything and avoid loose fitting clothes, and if you have long hair, it should be tied up or secured in some way.
Follow Instructions – Your pilot will explain the emergency procedures for safety reasons, and then you will be asked to secure your seat belt. Unlike a commercial airliner, passengers are required to keep the seat belt on at all times, unless instructed otherwise. Once you are strapped in, you can sit back and really enjoy the experience, and if you are going to fly the Sydney Harbour trip, for example, the scenery will take your breath away.
Focus on the Moment – In order to maximise your enjoyment, clear your mind of all stresses and strains of modern living and appreciate the feeling of flying through the air and observe nature at its best. If you take the time to really look, there is much to see on the ground, and iconic beach scenes and valley passes provide you with a unique backdrop. For those who are interested, there is a preparation checklist for first time flyers, which details what to do if you are booking group tours. The helicopter tour company will also discuss this with you.
Arrive Early – Typically, the helicopter tour company would have a busy schedule, and once you have made your booking, the operator will tell you what time you must be at the agreed location, and whatever time that is, you should arrive early. Prompt departures are essential if you want the full experience, and things will run smoothly if everyone is on time.
A helicopter flight is a unique experience, and wherever you decide to book, this once-in-a-lifetime experience will be everything you imagined, and more.