San Jose, Costa Rica's largest city and cultural capital, today it is a sprawling metropolis. Sitting in the Central Valley region, the city offers a range of comfortable hotels and provides a good base to explore nearby volcanoes, coffee plantations, national parks and rainforests. Surrounded by the Central Mountain range and set within a valley, San Jose boasts a dramatic backdrop. The city itself is a pleasant mix of modern and Spanish colonial architecture and several interesting museums, art galleries, boutiques and restaurants can be visited.
Mountains and volcanoes enclose the Central Valley of Costa Rica in a geographical cradle to form the country’s cultural and geographical base. You’ll find that the climate here is milder and less humid than on the country's coasts due to its higher altitude. Highlights of the area include the Poas Volcano, with its spectacular crater lake and surrounding cloud forest, the Braulio Carillo National Park, several coffee plantations (ideal for samplying one of Costa Rica's biggest exports!) and exotic flora at the Lankester Gardens.