Near the southwestern end of Laguna de Arenal, the small town of Tilarán has a laid-back, middle-class charm – thanks to its long-running status as a regional ranching center. This tradition is honored on the last weekend in April with a rodeo that’s popular with Tico visitors, and on June 13 with a fiesta de toros that’s dedicated to patron San Antonio.
Because it’s situated on the slopes of the Cordillera de Tilarán, this little hub is a much cooler alternative (in climate and atmosphere) than, say, Cañas, and makes a pleasant stop between La Fortuna and Monteverde. Life unfurls immediately around the main plaza. Wander more than a block in any direction, and things get rather residential. Street signs are a new and limited resource.
Tilarán destination guides
Costa Rica Explorer
Costa Rica has as many microclimates as it does opportunities for active adventures, and this 2-week journey will bring you the best of both. There's a visit to a cloud forest, but for a bigger jolt, try rappelling down waterfalls or flying across ziplines above the treetops. For the caffeine connoisseur, we visit a coffee co-op and learn how it gets from bean to your cup.
Costa Rica Active Adventure
Trekking, biking, horseback riding, kayaking, ziplining… Costa Rica really is the "Adventure Capital of the Americas." Thrill-seekers will find more than enough to keep themselves busy over this trip’s 13 action-packed days.