Costa Rica Wedding Photographer Kevin Heslin » Destination Wedding Photography in Costa Rica by Kevin Heslin

Where to get married in Costa Rica

Where to get Married in Costa RicaP I NI M A G E

Where to Get Married in Costa Rica | The different areas of Costa Rica

Wedding in Dominical, Costa Rica.P I NI M A G E

Impressive swell breaking on rocks in Costa Rica

Where to get married in Costa Rica

Costa Rica may be small country but it is unique as it is home to many of the world’s most popular and stunning national parks, preserves, and beaches. Moreover, the climate and scenery vary greatly from region to region. It is no wonder that it is a popular place to celebrate one of the most important days of your life.  Though I’m convinced it’s hard to go wrong in Costa Rica, I’ve done some of the leg work for you as my work & passion puts me on the road and through the doors of the most popular destinations.  Here are some tools & suggestions to consider when deciding on your perfect spot. Pull out a notebook and brainstorm some ideas.

 

Questions to keep in mind when considering a wedding location:

-Are you seeking relaxation?

-All-inclusive or boutique?

-Are you seeking adventure?

-What activities interest you?

-Do you prefer short or long travel distances?

-What are your Costa Rica must-see’s?

As you jot down your notes, let’s see if the following cities and provinces below meet your needs & interests.

Destination Wedding in Costa RicaP I NI M A G E

 

Should You Get Married in Costa Rica’s Guanacaste Province?

Wedding in Guanacaste Costa RicaP I NI M A G E

Ceremony in Guanacaste, Costa Rica

Fly Into: Liberia International Airport

Activities: Diving, fishing, golfing, hiking, beaches, waterfalls, hot springs, turtle tours, and surf.

Must Sees: Rincon de la Vieja, Santa Rosa National Park, Parque Nacional Tortugas las Baulas.

Beaches: Conchal, Flamingo, Sugar Beach, Coco and Octal. Pinilla

Cities: Tamarindo, largest coastal town with a vibrant nightlife and great surfing in the area.

Hotels & Resorts: Westin Golf Resort & Spa, Barcelo Langosta Beach, Hotel Riu Palace, Papagayo, Occidental, Capitan Suizo, Tamarindo Diria, and WJ Marriot Hacienda Pinilla.

Tip: while Guanacaste is a great region to visit, during high season (November- late April) it can become very dry and the roads and small towns become dusty.  On the plus side, this area has less risk of rain during the rainy season.

With over 400 miles of coastline the Guanacaste region is literally brimming with beautiful beaches and breathtaking spots to make the perfect backdrop for your special day. The area is also home to several national parks and offers a host of jungle and beach activities that promise great fun for your entire party–from grandma and grandpa on down to your sister’s new baby. For the especially adventurous (and not claustrophobic) you can even go on a spelunking adventure in Barra Honda National Park where you can explore some of the best caves in the entire country.

Guanacaste offers a wide range of accommodation options with everything from remote eco-lodges to 5 star hotel resorts and everything in between. You can even choose to stay in a luxurious resort and then take a day tour to a remote spot in the jungle in order to enjoy the best of both worlds. With the Liberia International Airport conveniently located in the northern part, everywhere in Guanacaste is accessible by car within a few hours so it’s not too difficult to get around.  

Should you Get Married in Costa Rica’s Osa Peninsula?

Wedding in Osa PeninsulaP I NI M A G E

Wedding Ceremony on the Osa Peninsula.

Fly Into: San Jose International Airport (SJO)

Then: Drive or Domestic flights to Puerto Jimenez

Activities: national parks, hiking, beach activities, snorkeling, surfing, scuba diving, horseback rides

Must Sees: Corcovado National Park

Beaches: Playa Platanares, Pan Dulce, Matapalo

Cities: Puerto Jimenez

Hotels & Resorts: Sabalo Lodge, Rio Sierpe Lodge. Others include Copa de Arbol Beach & Rainforest Resort, Drake Bay Getaway Resort, Isla Violin Eco-Lodge (accessible only by boat),and Lapa Rios Ecolodge.

Tip: Osa Peninsula is much more remote and not as developed as other areas of the country and therefore definitely for the more adventurous couple. You may need a 4×4 vehicle between the months of May-November.  One of the area’s biggest draws is it is also home to half of all the species in Costa Rica,. You can fly from San Jose international airport into Puerto Jimenez, which will make the journey a little quicker and easier.

For those who love nature and exploring the outdoors, Costa Rica makes an excellent vacation spot. And for those purists who can do away with more popular (and more populated) beaches and fancy resorts the Osa Peninsula is your playground. Take a trek through Corcovado National Park and see any number of interesting creatures lurking about in the shadows or frolicking in the trees. This region is considered one of the most biodiverse regions in the world and is home to half of all the species in Costa Rica. With a little patience and some luck you’ll get the chance to see incredible wildlife up close and personal that you perhaps never thought possible. While the Osa Peninsula offers a more rugged vacation experience there are so many beautiful spots that will make a fantastic backdrop for your special day that the hardest part will be just choosing one!

Keep in mind that this area is hot and humid and there are lots of flying critters so don’t forget your bug spray. The rainy season lasts from May-November with the heaviest rains falling in October. During this time you may need a 4×4 vehicle to get around and Corcovado may become inaccessible so be sure to plan accordingly if spotting wildlife is high on your list.

Should You Get Married in Costa Rica’s Central Pacific Coast?

Wedding on the Central Pacific of Costa Rica.P I NI M A G E

Wedding on the Central Pacific of Costa Rica.

Fly Into: San Jose International Airport (SJO)

Then: Drive or Domestic flights to Quepos airport.

Activities: Diving, Fishing, Zipline & Canopy Tours, Surfing, National Parks, Waterfalls

Must Sees: Corcovado National Park, Manuel Antonio National Park, Nauyaca Falls,

Beaches: Manuel Antonio, Dominical, Uvita, Jaco

Cities: Jaco, Manuel Antonio, Dominical, Santa Teresa

Tip: Many places in Puntarenas are tourist and family friendly.  This is a huge draw in terms of ease & safety.

Venues: Zephyr Palace and Villas Caletas

Should You Get Married in Costa Rica’s Manuel Antonio/Quepos?

Wedding in Manuel AntonioP I NI M A G E

Bride and groom in Manuel Antonio with the national park in the background.

Fly Into: San Jose International Airport (SJO)

Then: Drive or Domestic flights to Quepos airport.

Activities: national park, surfing, kayaking, zipline/canopy tours, whitewater rafting, snorkeling, parasailing, jet skiing

Must Sees: Manuel Antonio National Park, Quepos’s world-class marina

Beaches: Beaches in the national park, Manuel Antonio public beach, Playitas, Biesanz

Cities: Manuel Antonio, Quepos

Hotels & Resorts: Arenas del Mar, Hotel Costa Verde, Hotel Parador, Gaia Hotel & Reserve,

Tip: Manuel Antonio is the best of both worlds. The town set atop a hill overlooking the islands offers everything from backpacker hostels to 5 star amenities with restaurants to satisfy every taste. You can arrange a shuttle from SJO airport to town or you can take a domestic flight into Quepos Regional Airport for a faster trip. To get to Manuel Antonio you must pass through the town of Quepos, a Costa Rican fishing town where you can see local culture and try typical Costa-Rican dishes.  Furthermore, within a 30-minute radius you have access to jungle, mountains, and beach.  As the greenery of the surrounding jungle stays vibrant year-round compared to other regions in Costa Rica it is a popular destination for weddings and for tourists.

Manuel Antonio is a fun beach town nestled against the famous Manuel Antonio National Park that has no shortage of gorgeous views and easily accessible spots/venues to host a spectacular ceremony and have a fun party afterwards. It is the best of both worlds where nature meets civilization and within a 30-minute radius you have access to jungle, mountains, and, of course, the beach. In fact between the town and the park there are several world class white sand beaches in the area. You can either rent a car to go exploring in the jungle or if you prefer not to strike out on your own, tours and taxis abound to take you to any of a myriad of activities and options. With all there is to see and do in this area you could spend weeks here and still not see it all, but the great part is that there is something for everyone in your party.

The town itself is set atop a hill overlooking the islands and offers everything from backpacker hostels to 5 star amenities with restaurants to satisfy every taste. You can even rent a house in the mountains just for you that offers lots of privacy and a luxurious jungle experience and yet provides easy access to town. Many of these beautiful tropical villas even offer a stunning wedding venue in and of themselves, making your wedding planning and logistics a breeze! As the greenery of the surrounding jungle stays vibrant year-round compared to other regions in Costa Rica it is a popular destination for weddings and for tourists.

Hope this helps you narrow down your options on where to get married in Costa Rica. If I can offer any assistance or answer additional questions, I’d be happy to help. Shoot me an email at info@kevinheslinphoto.com.

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