Costa Rica’s nightlife is more than nightfall in the rainforest when all the nocturne creatures come out! And while there’s plenty of that, there is also lots going on out on the streets.
There are countless bars across the country that offer awesome music, dancing, and exotic drinks! Loco Jim and his friends are never ones to shy away from a good time and now their secrets can be yours. Whether you’re looking for a place to hang out with groups of friends or for a quiet drink by yourself, to anything in between we can help you find it!
If you’re looking for more detailed information on the nightlife scene in a specific part of the country, check out our “Destinations” pages.
Nightlife in San Jose can be as vigorous as in any big city.
With a wide array of salsa clubs, discos, casinos, sports bars, karaoke joints and other bars, restaurants, and much more; Costa Rica’s capital is always ready to you give nights of bright lights and good beer. No matter what type of atmosphere you’re looking for, San Jose’s nightlife can accommodate you. So what can you do on a night out in the city? Try swinging by Vertigo for some electronic music, dancing at Salsa 54, and then some karaoke at Castro´s bar. If you’re out late and hunger strikes drop by the famous Soda Tapia for some good dinner-fashioned food.
If you’re in the mood for some live music we recommend stopping by El Observatorio, Mundo Loco, or the San Pedro Jazz Café. Sports fans can catch their games at Chichi’s, Mac’s or Rio sports bars. Those feeling a little homesick can swing by Time Out bar in Escazu, a known popular expat hangout.
Costa Rica’s nightlife is not limited only to San Jose. There is exciting night action happening near the coast at beaches such as Jaco, Puerto Viejo, Manuel Antonio and many more. Jaco is known to be a top tourist destination by travelers around the world. It´s located in Puntarenas on the central pacific coast. Besides the beautiful beaches, great surfing, luxury hotels and many other assets, Jaco boasts of a great nightlife you will not want to get away from. Monkeys Bar, Surfdogs Bar and the Backyard Hotel at Hermosa Beach located just after Jaco, are just three of the most common yet exciting spots that spark up the nightlife on this side of the coast.
Manuel Antonio and Quepos also offer many options for anyone looking to go out at night; with bars, discos, casinos, and more! Check out the always popular, El Avion restaurant for some fine typical dinning in a unique setting. If you’re in the mood for dancing head over to Bambu Jam or Arco Iris Clubs and show off your moves. Those looking for a drink can check out Sargento Garcia’s, Dos Locos, or El Gran Escape for some of the best cocktails and beers in town.
Monteverde presents its visitors with a wide array of culinary options. Mexican, Italian, Japanese and, of course, typical Costa Rican cuisine area all readily available in the downtown area of Santa Elena. A great place for cocktails is the Tree House. Located under a giant fig tree in Santa Elena, it offers great drinks and a stunning view for a fair price.
In Arenal you will find all sorts of exciting options in the town of La Fortuna. Restaurants offering any international dishes that you may crave are, for the most part, within walking distance. For a night of dancing and getting a drink or two check out the Lava Lounge, El Establo disco, Chelas, and Rockoco.
Decades of development and heavy tourism and progress have turned Tamarindo, (located in Guanacaste) into another coastal party destination. Discos, bars and lounges gather locals and visitors alike in some of the most fun beach parties of the Pacific. Liberia and Quepos are also known for having an active night life.
Many consider Puerto Viejo the reggae capital of the country. Bob Marley fans might want to head to the Caribbean coast to get away from the crazy Costa Rica San Jose Nightlife and into a roots, rock, and reggae smooth flow. Located in the province of Limon, Puerto Viejo is a great surfing point by day and an awesome party place by night. The Caribbean nightlife in this beautiful place is more laid back but never dull. Those looking for authentic Caribbean style food at great prices and good reggae dancing will be right at home in this little corner of the Atlantic.
Here you can find more details about where to eat in some of Costa Rica´s most popular destinations: