Central Valley for programs, meetings and events

The Central Valley is the most important, economically speaking, area of Costa Rica. We are talking about the capital city, and the most populated cities of the country, half of the total population of Costa Rica and the  labor and social heart of the country. It is geographically in the center of the country, allowing all sorts of possibilities for programs and events.

Oxcart Parade in December in San José

Oxcart Parade in December in San José


The Central Valley, flat and totally surrounded by mountains enjoys a permanent breeze and some great landscapes in blue and green.


The Central Valley has two main periods: The sunny and the rainy with a very stable and quite pleasant temperature of 71° F all year round.

The sunny season starts in December and goes all the way to mid-May and temperatures may rise to the 80°s (F°)

In the rainy season temperature does not change much and rains happen usually two or three hours in the afternoons. (Except when  hurricanes or low pressure systems in the Caribbean cause episodes of continuous pouring rains. But then, again, these happen twice or three times in the year).

In the surrounding central mountains temperature may drop a little specially in December and January. (To 60°s F°)

Central Valley Rainfall and temperatures



In the Central Valley you will find the core of the Costa Rican culture, from the central markets of the main cities to all sorts of museums, theaters, typical restaurants and shows, and the roots of the traditions of the center of the country, where most of the population lives.

National Museum of Costa Rica

National Museum of Costa Rica


Area, population and cities

With an area of 3237 km² (2011 mi2) and as of 2010, it has a population of  2,600,00 million people.

The main city is, of course San Jose, not only the capital city but the one where you will find larger population areas, the government offices, and the main museums, hotels and off site venues.

The other cities are Cartago, on the East side, Heredia and Alajuela. In Alajuela is where the International Airport Juan Santamaría (SJO) is located.

National Parks in Guanacaste

Arenal Volcano National Park

Braulio Carrillo National Park

Irazú Volcano National Park

Juan Castro Blanco National Park

Poás Volcano National Park

Tapantí National Park

Turrialba Volcano National Park

Accomodations for Incentives Programs and Events:

  • Costa Rica Marriott
  • Double Tree Cariari
  • Real Intercontinental
  • Wyndham Herradura
  • Courtyard Marriott

Some of the most popular activities for participants in the Central Valley are:

  • Golf 
  • Rainforest Hikes and aerial trams
  • Bird Watching
  • Hot Springs
  • Spas
  • Rainforest Zip-lining Tours
  • White Water Rafting
  • River Tubing
  • Canyoning
  • Horseback Riding
  • Shopping
  • Projects of social sensitivity
  • Wildlife Rescue Centers

Read here: Ten reasons to bring families to an incentive program in Costa Rica

Airlines arriving in the Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO):

Commercial carriers

Aeroméxico       Mexico City

Air Canada Rouge           Toronto–Pearson

Air Panama        David, Panama City-Albrook

Air Transat          Seasonal: Montréal–Trudeau, Toronto–Pearson

Alaska Airlines  Los Angeles

American Airlines            Charlotte, Dallas/Fort Worth, Miami

Seasonal: New York–JFK, Phoenix

Avianca Costa Rica          Bogotá, Guatemala City, Lima, Managua, Panama City, San Salvador

Seasonal: Cancún            Avianca Guatemala        Guatemala City, San Andrés, Tegucigalpa

British Airways  London-Gatwick (begins 27 April 2016)]

Condor Frankfurt, Santo Domingo

Copa Airlines     Guatemala City, Managua, Panama City, Tegucigalpa

Copa Airlines Colombia Guatemala City, Panama City

Cubana de Aviación       Havana

Delta Air Lines   Atlanta, Los Angeles

Seasonal: Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York–JFK

Iberia    Madrid

Interjet                Mexico City

JetBlue Airways               Fort Lauderdale, Orlando

Nature Air     (Local airline)     Bocas del Toro, Drake Bay, Golfito, La Fortuna, Liberia, Limón, Managua, Nosara, Puerto Jimenez, Punta Islita, Quepos, Tamarindo, Tambor, Tortuguero

Sansa Airlines   (Local airline) Costa Esmeralda, Drake Bay, Golfito, La Fortuna, Liberia, Limón, Palmar Sur, Puerto Jimenez, Quepos, San Isidro, Tamarindo, Tambor, Tortuguero

Southwest Airlines         Baltimore, Houston–Hobby

Spirit Airlines     Fort Lauderdale, Houston–Intercontinental

United Airlines Chicago–O’Hare, Houston–Intercontinental, Newark, Washington–Dulles

Seasonal: Denver [17]

Veca Airlines     San Salvador

Volaris  Cancún, Guadalajara

WestJet               Seasonal: Toronto–Pearson



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