The weather in Costa Rica is warm and tropical all year round and depending on which part of the country to visit the climate can vary in temperature, annual rain fall, and humidity. The Guanacaste in the North can be really dry at times and gets winds every March; where as the Central Valley can be cool in the high elevation mountain areas around San Jose. No matter where you are though there are only two seasons: the dry season and the rainy season. In this blog we will discuss the typical weather patterns of the Southern Zone and the Costa Ballena area.
The Dry Season
Our dry season typically begins in late November or early December and lasts until May, when the afternoon showers begin to return. Although we can still get an occasional rain storm in the dry season it is usually sunny days and starlight nights. I have even seen it go over a month with no rain before, which is rare. The dry season is also known as the high season for tourism and many visitors come for the holidays of Christmas and New Year’s and during the week of Easter; which here is called Samana Santa. March is the height of the dry season and a good time to experience the area at its hottest and driest time. Even in March we are blessed that this tropical jungle never turns brown and keeps its lush green foliage year round. Many tourists decide to visit in the dry season in order to enjoy the beaches and adventure tours without much chance of rain. However, the rainy season can be a great time to visit as well and there is plenty of sunshine too.
The Rainy Season
Also known as the green season (even though it is always green around here), the rainy season usually starts at the end of May and goes through most of November. It is a common misconception that it just rains all the time in the Dominical area during the rainy season. Typically the day starts out sunny until about mid day or even later and then begins to cloud up leading to an afternoon or evening shower. Sometimes it can drizzle most of the night or there can a shorter sustained heavy down pour. September and October are the rainiest months and during that time you can experience a few days straight of grey clouds and off and on drizzle to steady rain. In July we usually receive a mini-summer of about 2 weeks of dry season type weather. Although the daytime temperature does not vary much between seasons, it can be slightly cooler during the rainy season and the afternoon showers cool everything off for the evening and rest of the night. Also the rainy season is the best time to plant and you can basically take cuttings of most any plant, stick it in the ground, and wait for it to grow. As far as adventure tours for visitors, you can enjoy zip-lining, hiking, fishing, ATV riding most of the day and not to mention white-water rafting is much better in the rainy season due to higher river levels and more intense rapids. Plus for surfers there tends to be bigger waves and more frequent swells in the rainy season.
No matter when you plan a trip to Costa Rica you will have lots of fun and experiences of a lifetime. If you are considering buying property and living here part or full time it is always a good idea to visit during the hottest and wettest times of the year before you make your decision.
*** Written by Joshua Kanter