Puerto Limon, Costa Rica

Location:

Cruise ships are docked in a busy cargo port, just steps away from town.

There is a nice crafts market right at the Puerto Limon cruise terminal.

Sightseeing:

A bit rundown due to the many earthquakes that have hit the area, Puerto Limon has some fascinating architecture and colorful open air market places. The main market in the center of town is the place to go to buy everything from wood carved items to traditional souvenirs.

The city’s main attraction is the waterfront Parque Vargas, an incongruous expanse of bench-lined sidewalks beneath a lost little jungle of tall palms and tropical flowers.

Theft is a problem: take precautions against pickpockets during the day, particularly in the market and along the sea wall.

Tours/Excursions/Transportation:

Although the taxi fares are posted (for example, $20 to Cahuita), these are all negotiable. Their drivers’ English is patchy so, if you are looking for a guide as well as a driver, check this first.

If you plan to travel outside the towns: protection against mosquito bites is very important, wearing lightweight long pants, long sleeved shirts and using insect repellents with high concentrations of DEET is recommended by the CDC

Nearby Places:

The Tortuguero Canals, a national park created in 1975 to protect the spawning areas of the green turtle (Tortuguero) and the region’s rich flora and fauna stretching from Moin to the Colorado River near the border with Nicaragua. On a slow-moving boat trip along the canals (some natural, some manmade), you will see sloths hanging upside down from the overhanging trees, many different types of bird including toucans and probably monkeys and crocodiles, too.

Limon-the Aerial Tram ride at Rain Forest, a 1,000-acre nature reserve next to the Braulio Carrillo National Park

The Original Canopy Tour offers everyone an exhilarating opportunity to soar through the rain forest high above the forest floor. You have to be in good shape for this adventure.

Costa Rica is Spanish for rich coast. As such, one can expect to find this place to be the ideal tropical paradise. A native song is that the Virgin Mary came down to Costa Rica and never went back to Heaven.

Costa Rica is often called the Switzerland of Central America.

There is such biodiversity in Costa Rica not only because it’s a land bridge between North and South America, but also because the terrain is so varied and there are weather patterns moving in from both the Pacific and Atlantic/Caribbean. There are impressive volcanoes, mountain areas, rivers, lakes, and beaches all throughout the country. There are many beautiful beaches – most of the popular ones are on the Pacific side but the Caribbean has many excellent beaches as well.

Shopping and Food:

Finding a place to eat out isn’t difficult in Costa Rica and generally speaking wherever you head for, the standards of hygiene in the kitchens are high and you run little risk of getting food poisoning. Expensive restaurants may not necessarily offer the best food and visitors are encouraged to try the smaller establishments, known as sodas, which the locals tend to frequent and the food is as authentic as it gets, while frequently of a standard equal to or higher than expensive venues.

Currency:

The local currency is Colón(es). The rate of exchange is about 490 Colones for 1 US Dollar. You can find ATMs in most places. They normally dispense US Dollars and Colones.

Communication:

Spanish is the main language in Costa Rica. English is used widely in areas populated by international tourists.

The emergency number in Costa Rica is 911

Internet cafes are fairly easy to find in tourist areas.

Opening Hours and Holidays:

Shopping hours
Mon-Sat 0900-1800/1900. There may be variations between areas.

Costa Rica is a Catholic country and it’s holidays are mostly church-related. Most businesses, including banks, close on official holidays. The country closes down entirely during the biggest holiday time, Easter Holy Week, but only during Holy Thursday, Friday and Saturday, by Holy Sunday, some services might be available, but don’t count on it in remote parts of the country.

Most Ticos now take the whole Christmas holiday week through New Year as an unofficial holiday.

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Place Categories: Cruise Ports

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