Rain or Shine: What to do in October in Costa Rica

Historically, October is the rainiest month in Costa Rica. It is also the one month of the year that the RipJack Inn is closed. While the RipJack Inn family is recharging their batteries and spending some much needed quality time with their own families, Costa Rica still has a lot to offer visitors who don’t mind a little rain.

If you find yourself in Costa Rica in October, you can expect at least one daily rainstorm. There is something truly peaceful and awe-inspiring about watching a magnificent storm from the comfort of your vacation home or covered patio though. Not to mention, rainy nights evoke dreamy sleeps. There are days in October where the weather might even be beach day-worthy and uncharacteristically perfect.

And, unless you’re a wicked witch from the west, the rain isn’t going to melt you!

If you need a bit more activity than just storm watching, here are the best things to do in October.


Swell season doesn’t end in October, and in fact the swells can be quite good this time of the year. The issue of course is the wind and weather fronts. For the patient and persistent surfer though, it is not uncommon to score some post-rain glass off sessions or even early morning surfs that are clean and fun before the afternoon storms roll in.

Spa Day

For locals and visitors alike, the heart of the rainy season is a great time to recharge and rejuvenate your mind, body, and soul. Los Altos de Eros is a boutique hotel and day spa that offers the most extraordinary spa experience in one of the most Zen-inspiring settings.

The day spa package includes three spa treatments followed by a gourmet lunch with wine on a private patio with a hot tub that overlooks the vast tropical dry forest just south of Playa Grande and out to the Pacific Ocean.

Typically during September and October, there is a substantial discount on spa treatments.

October in Playa Grande
Where spa dreams come true

Sea Turtle Arribada

October is a magical month on Playa Ostional (1 hour and 45 minutes south of Playa Grande). The few days leading up to the new moon (October 9th is the new moon), egg-heavy Olive Ridley sea turtles emerge from the ocean in hundreds to thousands strong to lay their eggs. This natural phenomenon is truly sensational!

October in Costa RIca
Olive Ridley sea turtles babies in Playa Ostional

White-Water Rafting

Costa Rica has over a half a dozen rivers that are famous for their white water rapids. The more rain and water in the rivers, the more powerful the rapids are. If you are a true adrenaline-seeker and are looking to hit the rapids hard, October is a great time to do so.

The Pacuare, Naranjo, Reventazon, Savegre, and Sarapiqui River are a few of Costa Rica’s most notorious rivers.

October in Costa Rica
Raging rapids in October

Explore the Caribbean Coast

September and October are historically the driest months of the year on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica. This is an excellent time of the year to explore the “other side.” The Caribbean side is home to the famous Tortuguero National Park in the north and the Gandoca-Manzanillo National Wildlife Refuge and Cahuita National Park in the south.

The water is crystal clear over here, the snorkeling is superb, and the culture is vibrant, inviting, and quite different from the rest of the country. You can even take a Sansa Flight from the Tamarindo Airport through San Jose and over to the other side if you just want to explore this coastline for a few days and then return to Playa Grande.

October in Playa Grande
Can’t beat an October sunset in Playa Grande