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San José

 Costa Rica is nestled between the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea and offers you a typical Central American vibe. The capital city San Jose holds diverse activities for visitors and has an exciting urban life with art galleries, parks and vibrant nightlife. It is an ideal holiday area due to the close proximity to wildlife areas, rainforests and national parks.

currency

1 ₡ Colón (CRC) = 100 céntimo

phone

911
ambulance: 128
fire: 118

newspaper

Diario Extra
Al Día
La Nación

hours

General opening hours are from 8:30 to 4:30. Note that many shops and museums might be closed on Mondays.

population

339.588

info

San Jose Tourist information office
Located in the east side of Juan Pablo II bridge,
over the motorway General Canes, San Jose
Open Monday-Friday 08:00-16:00.
+506 2299 5800

Colourful houses in downtown of San Jose

The City

With its tropical wildlife and outdoor adventures, Costa Rica is a traveler’s paradise. Whether you’re interested in discovering a diverse fauna with big cats, curious birds and colorful fish or want to dive into the rainforest flora, the Central American region offers visitors an outstanding glimpse on nature.

While the city of San Jose might provide a big contrast to its green surroundings, the cultural and political capital is well worth exploring. Between grey buildings and a hectic urban life, you will find a number of art galleries, historic monuments and market areas that make your visit unforgettable.

However, if you feel the need to get out of the city, San Jose gives you easy access to beaches, mountain hikes and national parks nearby.

Behind the iron gate is the garden pathway into the National Theater in San Jose

Do & See

Whether you want to experience urban city life full of art, museums for young and old, historic buildings or are looking for a nature adventure, San Jose is your ideal starting point. Take a day-tour through the local forest regions or hike the nearby mountains. An exciting city life and unique nature make your stay unforgettable.

Parada Jaguar Rescue Center

National Theatre of Costa Rica

Museo de Jade

Parque Nacional

Parque Zoológico Simón Bolívar

Monte Sky

Spirogyra Butterfly Garden

Museo de los Niños

Catedral Metropolitana

Orosi River Valley

Mercado Central de San Jose

Streetlife at Morazán Park

Galería Namu

Pre-Columbian Gold Museum

Arenal Volcano

Typical Costa Rican vegetable plate

Dining

Rice, vegetables, most of all black beans, and fruit are on the daily menu in San Jose. In fact, the Central American cuisine offers you a healthy and delicious choice of dishes. The city center is full of small cafes, cozy restaurants and lovely eateries and lets you experience the taste of Costa Rica.

Tin Jo

Park Café

La Terrasse

Saúl Bistró

El Patio

Sapore Trattoria

Ram Luna

Jurgen's Restaurant

Alma de Amón

Kalú

Coffee

Cafes

Many street cafes invite for a quick refreshment or extended break on a full day of sightseeing. Grab an ice cream cone as you stroll by or sit down for a snack in the afternoon. You will find yourself among happy locals and friendly travellers in the city center and downtown San Jose.

Park Café

Café Miel

Mantras Veggie Cafe and Tea House

POPS

Vishnu

Night San Jose, Costa Rica

Bars & Nightlife

From Jazz Cafes to dance clubs and beer pubs, San Jose offers visitors a diverse selection of nightlife entertainment. You will experience vibrant street life and exciting music culture with events for every taste. Hangout with some friends in the pub around the corner or check out the hottest disco in town - you won't be disappointed!

Vértigo

Jazz Cafe Club

Costa Rica Beer Factory

Bahamas

La Avispa

El Sótano

Antik Restaurant + Bar

Castro's

Street San Jose

Shopping

Carvings from polished coconut wood, colourful bead bracelets and hand-made ceramics count to popular souvenirs from Costa Rica. Jewelry and skillfully woven fabrics can be bought at the various markets in the city center and will delight friends and family.

Mall San Pedro

Mercado Central de San Jose

Typical Souvenirs

Feria Verde de Aranjuez

La Lechería

Plaza América

Cemaco

Lincoln Plaza

Galería Namu

Holalola Souvenir

Deckchairs along Mal Pais coastline in San Jose Costa Rica

Essential Information

Aeropuerto Internacional Juan Santamaría (SJO)

The airport Juan Santamaría Internatinoal (SJO) is located about 17 km northwest from the city center. Right outside the entrance you will find a local bus that takes you to San Jose. Also Alajuela bus takes you to the city. One journey costs less than 1 US$.

While there is a number of taxis waiting at the airport you should make sure to get a licenced "Taxi Aeropuerto". One journey is about 25 minutes and costs about 25 US$.

Address: Autopista Bernardo Soto, Río Segundo, Costa Rica

Phone: +506 2437 2400

Website: www.fly2sanjose.com

Public Transport

There is a good and inexpensive bus system im San Jose. If you want to get out of the city use the local buses. Interbus and Gray Line Fantasy Bus will also take you to touristic places outside the city center but for a more expensive fare.

Taxi

Taxis in San Jose usually have a meter and are inexpensive. You can spot official taxis by their red or orange colour and one kilometer costs about 640 colones. Note that exact street names are hardly used in Costa Rica so you better refer to some well-known places nearby.

Taxi San Jorge
+50 2221 3434

La Guaria
+50 2226 7125

Coopetaxi
+50 2235 9966

Post

There are several post offices to be found in San Jose.

Address: Via 204 10105, Av 34C, San José

Phone: +506 2202 2900

Website: www.correos.go.cr

Pharmacy

Fischel
Frente a Correos de Costa Rica, San José
+506 2248 1682

Farmacia Sucre
Multiplaza Escazú, San Rafael de Escazu
+506 2289 0283

Premafarma
From Casa Italia, 50 meters South, Calle 29, San José
+506 2225 3774

Telephone

Country Code: +506

Area Code: 22

Electricity

110-120 Volts

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