Do You Know About Costa Rica’s Third Season?

In the mezzo of winter (Costa Rican-style winter, that is), a sudden and short-lived meteorological phenomenon takes place. Humidity dissipates and disappears, the trade winds return to seize the days, and the sun is released from the grasp of the dominating nimbus clouds. Between the dry golden summer and the wet green winter is a mini season that blends the best of both main seasons.

Veranillo de San Juan is Costa Rica’s version of an Indian Summer. Sometimes referred to as veranito, this “little summer” typically takes place somewhere between the end of June and the middle of August.

Guanacaste, Costa Rica
Where the sea and the jungle meet | Jenn Parker/@CRJenn86

Veranillo manifests south of the Tropic of Capricorn and blesses the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, especially the northern region including the Nicoya Peninsula with all-day offshore winds, a low humidity index, and very little if any rainfall. Veranillo can last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks and varies in commencement and cessation dates every year.

Playa Grande, Costa Rica
Dry season weather, wet season landscape | © Richie Ramone/Carive Productions

Veranillo is a break in the rainy season and a reminder of the dry season to come. While the weather dries up, the landscape remains vibrant green, the sunsets are still otherworldly, and the seasonal sizeable swells continue to kiss this coastline.

Locals and lucky visitors alike relish in this unique weather shift. This is an optimal time weather window to enjoy all of the outdoor activities that Costa Rica has to offer without fret of saturation, unfavorable winds, or activity-cancelling electrical storms.

Surf in Playa Grande, Costa Rica
Clear skies, clear sea | © Richie Ramone/Carive Productions

It would be difficult to plan your vacation to completely coincide with the exact timing of veranillo. There is also a chance that July and August can be rather rainy and unpredictable on the weather front, especially the further south that you go. However, if you happen to be here during this magical occurrence get ready to experience Costa Rica at its very best.