San Jose is a cosmopolitan capital surrounded by theaters, museums, parks and galleries. A walking tour through San Jose city will show the country´s cultural patrimony whose architecture has been influenced by different stylistic currents through all its history: from Colonial, Neoclassic and Eclectic to Art Deco and Victorian. Some of San Jose´s main attractions include a visit to the Gold and Jade Museum and the National Theater. Another interesting site is the Central Market, a traditional place which time hasn´t changed. It is a great place to observe and share with the average Costa Ricans.
While walking through the narrow passages one can see hundreds of traditional toys, pets, wood and leather crafts, candles, religious images and smell the great mix of spices, coffee, flowers, natural herbs, fruit and food. There are plenty of activities you can enjoy while staying in San José, this city offers an interesting mix of cultural and artistic highlights, the city is going through a revitalization process and there is history, culture and architecture everywhere.
- Butterfly & Orchids
- Poas Volcano National Park
- Arenal Volcano National Park
- Grecia and Sarchi Oxcart Factory
- Whitewater Rafting-Pacuare
- Cultural Tour of San Jose
- Pueblo Antiguo
- Jade Museum
- Pre-Colombian Gold Museum
- Irazu Volcano
Art Museum and La Sabana Park
Just 8 blocks from the hotel you could walk to the Art museum and La Sabana Park. The Art Museum is set in a neoclassical style building, built in the late 30’s; this building was the first international airport in Costa Rica. This museum offers exhibitions of works by local and international artists related to the visual arts. La Sabana Park is the main park of San José, it has an area of 72 hectares (including a lake, the National Stadium, the Art Museum and the National Gym) and it offers many areas for sports, you could take advantage of a beautiful morning or a sunny afternoon to go to the park for a walk.
Tel: (506) 222 7155 / 222 7932 / 222 7247
Address: San Jose. 42nd street, Central Avenue. La Sabana Metropolitan Park.
Admission Fees:Foreigners $5.00 (Foreign students with ID card $3.00)
Opening hours: Tuesdays to Saturdays from 10:00am to 4:00pm.
Sundays 10:00am to 2:00pm. Closed Mondays.
Pedestrian Boulevard and Central Market
Only 10 minutes walking from the hotel, you can get to the Pedestrian area which is a boulevard with all kind of stores including: shoe stores, department stores, clothing stores, etc. This boulevard has been improved in recent years, with the addition of decorative lamps, trees, flowers, etc; and during the year exhibitions like the cow parade or the peace parade (with pigeons painted by children from schools) take place in this boulevard. The Central Market was built in 1880, this is a popular market, very crowded and with a lot of booths with people that sells different kind of products like: crafts, flowers, spices, candles, and anything you can imagine, visiting this market is a must. This market is considered country's cultural heritage.
National Theater and Gold Museum
If you continue walking along the pedestrian boulevard you are going to get to the Culture Plaza where the National Theater and Gold Museum are located. The National Theater is considered like the most appraised cultural jewel in the capital. Inspired by the Paris Opera House, this Neo-baroque style building was built to impress, this theater has fine finishes including 22.5-karat gold leaf and Belgian ironwork. The construction began in 1890 and the theater opened in 1897. To afford the expensive construction a special tax for each bag of coffee exported was created (coffee was our main export at that time), the opening of the National Theater was a significant event for Costa Rican society. The gold museum is located under the culture plaza; this museum offersarchaeological, numismatic and pre-Columbian art collections. After visiting these two places we suggest you tostop and enjoy a famous Pops ice cream or a cup of CR coffee at 1820 coffee shop (both places are located at the Plaza de la Cultura).
Web page: www.museosdelbancocentral.org
Tel:(506) 2243 4202
Address: San Jose. 5th street, Between Central and 2nd avenue.
Admission Fees:Foreigners $9.00 (Foreign students with ID card $5.00)
Opening hours:Mondays to Sundays 9:30am to 4:30pm
National Museum and Artisans Market
If you get to the end of the pedestrian boulevard and continue two more blocks east you will get to the National Museum, the building it is housed used to be military quarter. It is the last building of this type still standing in Costa Rica. This building was the Bellavista Fortress, a structure that witnessed two battles and the announcement to abolish the military. The showrooms of this museum make a journey through the history of Costa Rica. On the west of the National Museum sits the Artisan Market, this market consists of a narrow alleyway with booths where you can find almost every type of souvenirs, especially wood works, including: wine holders, cutting boards, salad bowls, etc.
Tel. (506) 2257 - 1433
Address: 17th Street, Between Central and 2nd avenue. San Jose.
Admission fees: Foreigners $7.00 (foreign students with valid ID $4.00).
Opening hours: Tuesdays to Saturdays, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Sundays 9:00am to 4:30pm. Closed on Mondays
Cariari Golf is a world class course with tight fairways surrounded by plenty of trees. The combination of narrow fairways, wooded rough, and well guarded bermuda greens with a great roll is the reason this George Fazio course is easily considered Costa Rica's true test of your golf game. The Cariari golf course plays much longer than it's 6,590 yards - do want to test your shot making skills? Cariari is your best bet.
Cariari is conveniently located in the San Jose area, placed close to the Beacon Costa Rica Hotel and just 10-15 minutes from the airport and San Jose's nightlife.
Map of the Area