Climate and monthly weather forecast
Costa Rica

Flag of Costa Rica
Flag of Costa Rica

The climate of Costa Rica

Costa Rica has a mainly tropical climate, with year-round warm to hot temperatures. The climate is a tropical rainforest type (Köppen climate classification Af) in the north-central to the eastern belt and the extreme southeastern tip. From the northwest to the southeast diagonally, the climate is tropical monsoon (Köppen Am). The western one-fourth of the country is a tropical savanna (Köppen Aw). A narrow strip from the central part stretching up to the eastern end has a temperate climate, with its variants (Köppen Cfb, Cfc, Cwb, Cwc). Central mountain peaks fall under the alpine zone (Köppen ET). Costa Rica is a tropical country in Central America. Panama lies in the southeast of Costa Rica, Ecuador in the south, the Pacific Ocean in the southwest, Nicaragua in the north, and the Caribbean Sea to the northeast. The tropical location and proximity to large water bodies influence the climate.

Costa Rica lies on the Caribbean Plate, 10°N of the equator. The largest island is Isla Calero, and the remotest is Cocos in the extreme southwest. The Cordillera de Talamanca and the Cordillera Central mountain ranges separate the Caribbean and Pacific drainage basins. The Cordillera de Guanacaste in the north is part of the Continental Divide of the Americas. Tropical moist broadleaf forests cover much of the Cordillera de Talamanca region. The Terraba in the southern Brunca region is the longest river with a length of 99 miles. The coastline is a vast 800 miles, including 635 miles on the North Pacific Ocean and 133 miles on the Caribbean Sea. The Irazu Volcano is the highest volcano at 3431 meters, and Lake Arenal at 33 square meters is the largest lake in the country. Mount Chirripo is the highest point at 3821 meters in Costa Rica.

The best time to visit Costa Rica

The best time to visit Costa Rica is usually between January and mid-April in the dry season. The sunshine is bright on the plains and coasts, and the rainfall is relatively low. A beach holiday is particularly pleasant in February and March. The northwest is preferable between December and April. The southwest is best between January and April. The Caribbean coast has the best weather from February to March. The Pacific coast is warmer than the Caribbean and receives at least 8 hours of daily sunshine in the summer. The eastern coast remains cloudy and rainy throughout the year.

The worst time to visit Costa Rica

The worst time to visit Costa Rica is during the humid and rainy period from May to November in the wet season. The period from September to October is mainly cloudy and rainy. Heavy rainfall often occurs in many parts of the country and results in landslides and mudslides. Flooding and roadblocks can become an obstruction. The seawaters are warm at 28.9°C (84°F), but cloudy skies rob the possibility of sunbathing and constant rain that of swimming. San Jose, the capital, receives hardly 4 hours of daily sunshine in the wet season. On the east coast, Puerto Limon is cloudy and rainy, with an average of 4 hours of daily sunlight.

Spring weather in Costa Rica

As Costa Rica is located in the tropics, it does not experience a traditional spring season like temperate regions. Instead, the period from March to May transitions from the dry to the wet season. March is generally hot and dry, with temperatures soaring up to 27.2°C (81°F). However, by late April and into May, the country begins to experience more frequent showers, particularly in the afternoon and evening, marking the beginning of the wet season.

Summer weather in Costa Rica

Costa Rica's "summer" corresponds with the North American winter, running from December to April. This is the dry season, with hot, dry, and cloudy conditions prevailing. Temperatures during this time can often exceed 37.8°C (100°F), particularly in the lowland and coastal regions. The northwest part of the country experiences these high temperatures the most, while the Cordillera Central region remains cooler, with temperatures around 20°C (68°F).

Autumn weather in Costa Rica

Costa Rica's tropical location means it does not experience a typical autumn season. However, the period from September to November can be compared to the concept of autumn in temperate regions. This period is marked by significant rainfall, cloudy skies, and high humidity. It's part of the wet season, where September and October are typically the rainiest months. Temperatures during this period can range from 17.2°C (63°F) to 27.2°C (81°F) depending on the region.

Winter weather in Costa Rica

In Costa Rica, "winter" refers to the rainy season, spanning from May to November. Despite being the wet season, temperatures are still warm, generally hovering between 17.2°C (63°F) to 27.2°C (81°F). The rain during this period is more pronounced, especially between September to November. Furthermore, the eastern coast remains cloudy and rainy throughout the year, and San Jose, the capital, sees about four hours of daily sunshine during this period.

Weather in January

January in Costa Rica ushers in the new year with the continuation of the dry season, creating ideal conditions for outdoor activities and wildlife exploration. This month typically experiences the lowest temperatures of the year, although "low" in Costa Rica is quite warm by global standards. Weather in January »

Weather in February

February in Costa Rica is typically characterized by warm, dry conditions, as it continues the trend set by January, but with slightly warmer temperatures. The coastal lowlands see average temperatures rising, usually between 20°C (68°F) to 28.9°C (84°F), providing a warm and welcoming climate for beach and nature lovers. Weather in February »

Weather in March

March in Costa Rica offers excellent weather, characterized by warm and dry conditions, as it resides firmly in the middle of the country's dry season. Temperatures during this month remain fairly consistent with those of February, typically ranging from 20°C (68°F) to 28.9°C (84°F) across the country. Weather in March »

Weather in April

April, typically the final month of Costa Rica's dry season, sees the onset of warmer weather across the country. This month records the highest temperatures of the year, with averages ranging from 22°C (71.6°F) in the central highlands to a warmer 29°C (84.2°F) along the coastal lowlands. Weather in April »

Weather in May

As May arrives in Costa Rica, the transition from dry season to the wet season, often called the "Green Season," begins. Average temperatures across the country during May hover between 22°C (71.6°F) and 27°C (80.6°F). The coastal lowlands experience a slight decrease in temperature from the warmer month of April, providing a more comfortable climate for travellers seeking to explore the beautiful coastlines. In the central highlands, including regions such as San Jose and the Cordillera Central, average temperatures range from 20°C (68°F) to 22°C (71.6°F). Weather in May »

Weather in June

June in Costa Rica marks a deeper dive into the wet, or "Green," season. Nevertheless, this month provides travelers with a unique perspective on the country's lush landscapes, alive with vibrant flora and fauna. The average temperatures during June typically range from 21°C (69.8°F) to 26°C (78.8°F) across the country, slightly cooler than in May due to increased precipitation. The central highlands, including regions such as San Jose and the Cordillera Central, experience consistent temperatures from 19°C (66.2°F) to 21°C (69.8°F). Weather in June »

Weather in July

July in Costa Rica offers a unique climate characteristic, known as the "veranillo" or "little summer." This is a short respite in the wet season where rainfall decreases, particularly in the northwestern parts of the country. Average temperatures in July remain relatively consistent, with a range from 21°C (69.8°F) to 26°C (78.8°F) across most of the country. In the central highlands, areas like San Jose and the Cordillera Central enjoy temperatures from 19°C (66.2°F) to 21°C (69.8°F). Weather in July »

Weather in August

August signifies the continuation of the wet season in Costa Rica, following the brief respite offered by the "veranillo" in July. The lush greenery continues to thrive, nourished by the frequent rain showers. Average temperatures generally range from 21°C (69.8°F) to 26°C (78.8°F) throughout the country, consistent with the temperatures of previous months. In the central highlands, including areas such as San Jose and the Cordillera Central, temperatures hover from 19°C (66.2°F) to 21°C (69.8°F). Weather in August »

Weather in September

September in Costa Rica is known as one of the wettest months of the year, marking the height of the "Green Season." Rain showers are frequent and often heavy, but they significantly contribute to the country's lush, green landscapes. Weather in September »

Weather in October

October in Costa Rica is recognized as the rainiest month of the year. The country experiences the peak of the wet, or "Green," season, with frequent and heavy rain showers. As a result, the landscapes are at their most lush and vibrant, teeming with rich biodiversity. Weather in October »

Weather in November

November marks the winding down of the wet season in Costa Rica. Rainfall begins to decrease, signaling the transition towards the drier months. Nevertheless, rain showers remain quite common across the country. The average temperatures in November maintain a consistent range from 20°C (68°F) to 25°C (77°F), similar to the preceding months. In the central highlands, encompassing regions like San Jose and the Cordillera Central, temperatures hover between 18°C (64.4°F) and 20°C (68°F). Weather in November »

Weather in December

December signals the onset of the dry season in Costa Rica, a time of year fondly referred to as the "Gold Season." This period is characterized by reduced rainfall and an increase in sunny days. Average temperatures typically range from 22°C (71.6°F) to 28°C (82.4°F), slightly warmer than in previous months, due to increased sunshine. In the central highlands, which include San Jose and the Cordillera Central, temperatures lie between 20°C (68°F) and 22°C (71.6°F). Weather in December »

Costa Rica

Weather forecast for your location

1. Click Locate me button
2. Allow the app to use your location