The Best Places To Visit In Costa Rica With Kids - My Family Travels

Visit Costa Rica with kids to explore the best natural attractions in a country known for its majestic and unspoiled terrain. Costa Rica is an affordable and attractive destination, not only for adults but also for families who want their children to be close to nature.

Costa Rica definitely is an interesting and exciting playground for families. This Central American country offers wonderful experiences in nature that we cannot find in big cities. On family trips, visit tropical beaches, wildlife sanctuaries, natural waterfalls and history museums.

Aerial view of Manuel Antonio National Park in Costa Rica.
From above, it’s easy to see the many shades of blue in the water off the coast of Manuel Antonio National Park.

To make it easy for you to have a memorable trip, we’ve highlighted the top eco-friendly attractions for families in Costa Rica.

Manuel Antonio National Park

The 680-hectare (1,680 acres) Manuel Antonio National Park is popular with families because of its beautiful white sand beaches and rugged rainforest. The immersive environment is enough to satisfy children’s curiosity about nature.

In addition, Manuel Antonio is also a very convenient location for commuting if you are coming from San Jose. It is only 59 Km (36.6 miles) to go from San Jose to Manuel Antonio so you can easily travel by car, minivan or bus.

In this large park, children will discover a variety of fascinating animals, such as sloths and exotic birds. One of the most popular activities is hiking within Manuel Antonio National Park. Exploring the park’s trails will give you a chance to get close to many of the shyer rainforest animals. The main trail is a 1.3-mile flat, sandy trail that links the park’s beaches. All kids from ages 3-years and older can try these activities. 

La Fortuna Waterfall

La Fortuna Waterfall in Costa Rica.
From your private pond at the base, look up 246 feet to the top of La Fortuna water fall, a favorite attraction when visiting Costa Rica with kids.

This waterfall has almost become an icon of La Fortuna, Costa Rica. This stunning 75 meter (246 feet) waterfall is a great nature escape for families to relax.

If you are looking for more outdoor adventures when visiting Costa Rica with kids, La Fortuna Waterfall is the standout. You can take a dip in the refreshing water and admire the breathtaking scenery. For a modest admission price, this is the perfect place for your family to relax after a long tiring day.

National Museum Of Costa Rica

Exterior of bright yellow National Museum of Costa Rica in San Jose.
When visiting San Jose, Costa Rica with kids, allow a half-day for the National Museum of Costa Rica which holds many of the country’s cultural treasures.

The National Museum Of Costa Rica is located in the capital of San José. It is located at Calle 17, between Central and Second Avenue, Cuesta de Moras. It moved to its current location in 1950.

Inside the Costa Rica National Museum, tourists can find a wide variety of displays on the country’s history and culture, from the pre-Columbian times all the way to the present.

We recommend this place because museum exhibits give children many more opportunities to learn about Costa Rican culture and history. Additionally, in case there is a sudden rain, the museum will be the right place for your family to stay dry.

Don Olivo Chocolate Tour

Cacao beans growing on trees in Costa Rica.
Get up close to Cacao beans at the Don Olivo Chocolate Tour and learn how your favorite candy is made.

Allow 2 hours for the tour in La Fortuna de San Carlos. It’s hard to find a kid who doesn’t love chocolate. So, this trip will never let your kids get bored.

With the Don Olivo Chocolate Tour, each member of your family will be treated to a cup of hot cocoa and a chocolate bar. In addition, the most interesting thing is the chocolate making process behind the candy that children eat every day.

Not to mention, the tour includes free samples of fresh cane juice, leche, apple and papaya. The trip will definitely leave an indelible impression on children.

Baldi Hot Spring

Shaded table and lounge chairs overlook Baldi Hot Springs in Costa Rica
Shaded table and lounge chairs overlook Baldi Hot Springs in Costa Rica

Baldi Hot Spring features water slides and 25 heated natural pools where the whole family can find fun. Parents enjoy cocktails at the poolside bar or simply relax in the sauna. Meanwhile, kids can have a fun adventure of their own at its mini water park. You can easily find more information about Baldi Hot Spring prices and reviews here.

Mistico Arenal Hanging Bridges Park

A hanging bridge at Mistico Arenal Hanging Bridges Park in Costa Rica.
The suspension bridges at Mistico Arenal Hanging Bridges Park are safe for all ages to cross, and kids love them.

One adventure that many like to brave during their trip to Costa Rica with kids is a walk along the suspension bridges. Walking through the forest canopy, being immersed in the treetops and seeing the greenery in plain sight is an unforgettable experience.

The highlight of Mistico is, of course, the suspension bridges. There are 12 suspension bridges here. The bridges look scary, however they are very solid and safe, so children from 3 years and older can walk across them.

Along the way, pause to help children find lots of wildlife, tropical birds and many species of interesting insects. There are also some nice views of Arenal Volcano from the property. Since it has a reasonable entry cost, the Hanging Bridges of Mistico are a great attraction for your family.

Arenal Ecoglide Park

Climbing structure in the treetops is part of Ecoglide Park in Costa Rica.
Climb up to the treetops in Ecoglide Park in Costa Rica.

This is a place filled with games and activities for your family. It’s an ideal outing for those visiting Costa Rica with kids.

Here, an active family experiences a number of organized activities such as a canopy tour, Tarzan swing, birdwatching and a night walk. Ecoglide Park is designed to challenge children and leave them with great memories. For our family, it made them all love nature more. Prices range from US$52 – US$104 per tour. We don’t consider that too cheap, but it is quite worthwhile because of the unusual adventures your whole family gets to experience.

Beth Leung is an avid traveler who loves the eco paradise of Costa Rica. She contributed this post on behalf of sponsor 12Go, a transportation metasearch engine designed to help you get around.

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