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March is the middle of the dry season in Costa Rica, which means that the country sees the mercury rise to its highest level during this time. And although the scorching sun and little rainfall leave locals and tourists scampering for places to cool off, it does not pose a challenge – Costa Rica’s long list of world-renowned beaches offer respite from the heat.

A trip to Costa Rica in March is also perfect for spotting humpback whales off the country’s Pacific coast and spying on exotic animals in national parks.

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Costa Rica Weather in March

Wild Caribbean beach of Manzanillo at Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica
Take a tour of the wild beaches of Manzanillo for a quick surf through the adventurous water of Costa Rica

Although some might find the soaring mercury unbearable, this month is unrivaled in terms of the opportunities it provides for exploration. Costa Rica’s temperature in March rises everywhere, especially in Guanacaste and the Pacific coast, where it reaches 37°C. It is a bit cooler and rainier in the Caribbean, with temperatures hovering between 20 to 31°C. Swim in the Pacific or explore the wildlife-packed environs of Monteverde and Arenal while the sun is out. Do not like hot weather?

For a seasonal overview, read our article on the best time to visit Costa Rica.

Weather in Costa Rica in March - Rainfall and Temperatures

Avg Daily (°C)293030
Avg Nightly (°C)181819
Avg Daily (°F)858686
Avg Nightly (°F)656567
Avg Rainfall (mm)101060

Why Visit Costa Rica in March

Suspended bridge at natural rainforest park, Costa Rica
Feel the thrill of crossing the suspended bridge in Monteverde National Park, Costa Rica
View of Hermosa Beach Pier, a look at downtown Hermosa Beach in Costa Rica
Take a sunny stroll through the Hermosa Beach Pier and enjoy the summer vibes, Costa Rica

If you find yourself in Costa Rica in March, prepare for the drawbacks of the high season – more crowds, higher accommodation rates, and availability issues in hotels. Conditions become even more chaotic during Holy Week when locals get off from work and enjoy their vacations. The schedule of the Holy Week fluctuates between late March and early April, so check the calendar before planning your itinerary.

However, those who brave the tourist surge will be rewarded with an experience unlike any other. Here is why many travelers consider visiting Costa Rica in March.

  • Fantastic weather: March is the driest month of the year in Costa Rica, which means you are free to explore most destinations without the inconvenience of rain or slippery roads. This allows you to plan activities ahead of time.
  • A flurry of festivals: Gawk over the artwork on display at San Jose’s International Festival of the Arts, attend a street party in the capital’s Dia de Boyero, or surround yourself with flowers in the National Orchid Show. Traveling to Costa Rica in March means being part of numerous events and festivities.
  • Fun in the sun: The beach season is here, so spend some time in the sun! The Pacific coast is this month’s main draw and exploring the beaches of Tamarindo, Playa Avellanas, and Playa Hermosa are perfect for swimming, surfing, and relaxing.
  • Wildlife-spotting: There are several unique wildlife sightings to be had during your trip to Costa Rica in March. See the turtles nest in Playa Grande and Playa Tortuguero, spy on humpback whales in the Pacific, or gawk at giant manta rays in the Catalina Islands.
  • Holy Week celebrations: If you find yourself in Costa Rica during Holy Week, watching religious-themed parades and processions could be a unique cultural experience!

Where to go and what to do

View of Arenal Volcano in the forest landscape of Monteverde, Costa Rica
Explore the rare landscapes of Monteverde area, Costa Rica

Although the country’s most popular sun and sand destinations of Tamarindo, Nosara, and Playa Hermosa nab the spotlight, you will find plenty of things to do in Costa Rica in March. With more sun and less rain, Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve also shines this month. Go hiking in the tropical rainforest, spy on the rare quetzal, or go on a jungle safari at night for sightings of unique nocturnal wildlife.

If the blazing sun leaves you searching for cooler destinations, head for locations in higher elevations. Base yourself in San Jose and explore the country’s majestic volcanoes. Hike the massively popular Arenal Volcano and marvel at its unique environment while spying on the wildlife that thrives there. Plan the perfect vacation by finding out how many days to spend in Costa Rica.

The month of March offers perfect weather conditions for adventure and outdoor activities. The Pacific coast beckons locals and tourists to sprawl on its gorgeous beaches, while rainforests are tempered with dryness that makes exploration easier.

However, March is still a high season, which means more crowds, pricier hotels, and a decrease in accommodation availability. Planning well in advance can help you circumvent these drawbacks. Get in touch with our travel experts if you wish to enjoy a personalized, hassle-free tailor-made trip to Costa Rica in March.

Take a look at our tours to Costa Rica in March.

Other articles
Costa Rica in February
Costa Rica in April

Published by David Lee, updated on January 4, 2023

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