Costa Rica is an exotic destination teeming with unique wildlife, exquisite spas, ecolodges and outdoor adventures. Staying at an all-inclusive resort makes vacationing here that much easier, since you won’t have to worry about where to get your next meal or how much extra it’ll cost. Whether you’re visiting the country for a family vacation, girls getaway or romantic retreat, there are plenty of all-inclusive options to choose from in this Central American oasis.
If you’re ready to plan an all-inclusive vacation to Costa Rica, consider this list of the top such resorts. The selections were compiled by U.S. News editors who researched dozens of travel industry review sites.
(Note: Some of the following activities, attractions and locations may be affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. New policies may be in place, including capacity restrictions, reservation requirements or mask mandates. Check with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. Department of State and local tourism boards before traveling.)
Secrets Papagayo Costa Rica: Peninsula Papagayo, Guanacaste
The adults-only Secrets Papagayo is situated on the picturesque Papagayo Peninsula in the Guanacaste province, along Arenilla beach. Guests are treated to the resort’s Unlimited-Luxury experience, which includes all-you-can-eat gourmet meals and limitless top-shelf drinks — alongside activities, 24-hour room service and best-in-class service. Recent visitors were continually impressed with the accommodating staff, who went above and beyond. The all-inclusive fee includes a variety of activities such as theme nights, live shows, cooking lessons, mountain biking, tours and nonmotorized water sports. At an additional cost, you can partake in off-site nature excursions including ATV riding, canopy tours, scuba diving and fishing. Travelers can relax at one of the property’s two pools or unwind at the world-class spa: An outdoor massage, hydrotherapy circuit or unique body treatment such as the Visions of Chocolate Fondue Wrap may await you there.
Planet Hollywood Costa Rica, An Autograph Collection All-Inclusive Resort: Culebra, Guanacaste
A stay at Planet Hollywood Costa Rica is designed to make you feel like a celebrity. Guests are given the red-carpet treatment at this all-inclusive Autograph Collection property with nearly 300 suites, two pools, five bars and eight restaurants. During your visit, you can work out at the PUMPED Fitness Center, lounge at PH Spa & Beauty Bar or take the family to the Splash Kids Zone. The Vacation Like a Star experience includes Hollywood memorabilia, a disco and nightly entertainment. Guests raved about the STAR Class treatment (available with upgrade) for the access to private areas, premium food and drinks and additional amenities — such as a personal agent to make the experience extra special. What’s more, the Star Kids Club offers acting classes, a karaoke machine, a green screen studio, a wardrobe room, movie nights under the stars, scavenger hunts and a Hollywood-themed party.
Hotel RIU Palace Costa Rica: Sardinal, Guanacaste
This all-inclusive resort is an ideal vacation option for active travelers. Located on the edge of the beach of Matapalo, Hotel RIU Palace Costa Rica grants opportunities to dance at the poolside RIU Party, take a dip in four pools (including one with a swim-up bar), sweat it out in the gym, snorkel or play beach volleyball. Resortgoers love the fact that there are so many activities to keep you entertained. For relaxation, visit the Renova Spa for a variety of treatments. The all-inclusive package includes dining at the buffet or the resort’s four themed restaurants. Travelers can also venture beyond the resort to explore volcanic areas, national parks and diving sites; on your excursions, try out windsurfing or tee up at the Four Seasons Golf Club amid splendid sea views.
The Westin Reserva Conchal, an All-Inclusive Golf Resort & Spa: Playa Conchal, Guanacaste
Situated on the North Pacific Riviera of Costa Rica you’ll find The Westin Reserva Conchal, a family-friendly destination. The 2,400-acre property boasts forests and beaches, along with a lagoon-style pool, whirlpool, kids pool, Royal Beach Club lounge, spa and championship golf course. The resort’s all-inclusive package will get you meals at the property’s 13 bars and restaurants, select alcoholic and nonalcoholic drinks, an in-room minibar (stocked daily), 24-hour room service, the Westin Kids Club, nonmotorized water sports, use of tennis courts and nightly entertainment. Recent visitors commented that the staff was very friendly and attentive.
La Paloma Lodge: Osa Peninsula, Puntarenas
For a true ecolodge experience, La Paloma Lodge offers seven bungalows and four rooms set on a cliff in a lush rainforest jungle with views of the Pacific Ocean. Visitors are immersed in nature and can observe local wildlife — including monkeys and macaws — from the resort balconies. Recent guests complimented the spacious rooms and jungle-facing decks, as well as the quiet atmosphere. In addition to accommodations, enjoy breakfast, lunch, snacks and a daily four-course dinner in the clubhouse with the all-inclusive rate. You’ll also get full-day guided tours to Caño Island Biological Reserve and to Corcovado National Park, where you can learn about the area’s flora and fauna. What’s more, activities in the area include horseback riding, scuba diving, a mangrove tour, night hiking and sport fishing.
Best Western Jacó Beach All Inclusive Resort: Jacó Beach, Puntarenas
On Pastor Diaz Avenue within walking distance of the beach, the Best Western Jacó Beach All Inclusive Resort’s central location is ideal for exploring downtown Jacó. This kid-friendly accommodation has a children’s playground, a pool and volleyball, along with evening activities for adults. Guests enjoy unlimited access to delicious food and premium drinks at the resort’s restaurant, lobby bar and snack bar. Recent lodgers appreciated staying here because of the budget-friendly pricing paired with a beachfront location.
Los Altos de Eros Hotel & Spa: Tamarindo, Guanacaste
Book a stay at the Los Altos de Eros Hotel & Spa for a jungle spa getaway. This premium boutique hotel in the Guanacaste province — only about 10 miles from the surf town of Tamarindo — has a secluded setting on 22 acres of land overlooking the Pacific Ocean, not to mention an award-winning spa. This adults-only resort features an infinity pool, fitness center, hiking trails, yoga and cooking classes. The six spacious rooms, decorated with upscale tropical furnishings, come equipped with indoor-outdoor showers or Roman bathtubs, private balconies or terraces, and organic toiletries. All-inclusive rates include accommodations, daily breakfast, parking, and access to the fitness center and yoga shala. The spa is an ultimate indulgence in relaxation with five outdoor treatment rooms, a waterfall, a hydrotherapy pool and a Balinese soaking tub. Treatments range from facials and massages to body wraps, scrubs and an infrared sauna. Travelers praise Los Altos de Eros for the unique spa offerings and recommend a visit for anyone in need of some quality relaxation.
Lapa Rios Lodge: Osa Peninsula, Puntarenas
Lapa Rios Lodge is located on a 1,000-acre rainforest reserve — the perfect setting for adventure lovers. The 17-bungalow lodge, set within Central America’s last remaining tropical lowland rainforest, is committed to protecting its surroundings and ensuring sustainable tourism. Guests will be immersed in the rainforest wildlife with common sightings of monkeys, macaws, sloths, armadillos, ocelots, geckos, butterflies and more. Select from three accommodation types: villas, suites or bungalows. Interpretive hikes and tours with naturalist guides are included at the all-inclusive property, along with three multicourse meals, snacks and nonalcoholic beverages. While on a Costa Rican vacation at the resort, travelers can dine in the open-air restaurant, have a meal with a guide to learn more about the biodiversity of the rainforest, enjoy a private romantic dinner for two or attend a cooking demonstration. Previous visitors enthuse about the beautiful setting, given the spectacular views and immersion in wildlife.
Copa De Arbol Beach & Rainforest Resort: Osa Peninsula, Puntarenas
Stay in a “cabina” with ocean and rainforest views at secluded Copa De Arbol Beach & Rainforest Resort ? accessible only by boat. The custom-made cabinas are constructed from recycled materials and reforested wood. Relax on a spacious deck while listening to the ocean waves and sounds of the wildlife. One particularly impressive amenity is the four-tiered oceanfront infinity pool. The all-inclusive package comes with three meals a day at the 1,500-square-foot, open-air Restaurante Miramar: This restaurant and bar serves fresh and local ingredients, such as native fruits and vegetables alongside catch-of-the-day seafood, freshly baked bread and Costa Rican coffee. Patrons rave about the delicious food and say the drinks are as beautiful as they are tasty.
Blue River Resort & Hot Springs: El Gavilan, Alajuela
Blending adventure and relaxation, the Blue River Resort & Hot Springs sits in Alajuela province, on the north side of Guanacaste’s Rincón de la Vieja volcano. The property offers access to Costa Rica’s blue rivers and on-site mud baths, hot springs and mineral pools. All-inclusive rates encompass accommodations and daily breakfast, as well as access to three hot springs pools, two freshwater pools, a botanical center, a bird sanctuary, and the natural mud bathing and sauna center. Guests stay in spacious air-conditioned cabanas surrounded by tropical gardens with views of the volcano. There are plenty of kid-friendly activities at the resort: Youngsters may enjoy the botanical gardens, butterfly gardens, hummingbird center, waterslide, mud baths, and opportunities to see wildlife like iguanas, toucans and sloths. Sign up for an eco-adventure to go zip lining, experience the blue rivers, visit the Dinosaur Park, ride on horseback to a waterfall or hike in the rainforest. Recent guests highly recommend experiencing as many activities as possible.
Andaz Costa Rica Resort at Peninsula Papagayo: Guanacaste
With three beaches, four pools, a wellness spa, luxury rooms and suites, outdoor adventure, a kids club, golf, a variety of dining options and a beach house, Andaz Costa Rica Resort has it all. Whether you’re on a family vacation or a romantic escape, this resort offers excellent service, upscale accommodations and memorable dining experiences. The rooms and suites come with modern amenities, outdoor terraces, top-notch furnishings, and complimentary in-room snacks and beverages. Enjoy a meal at one of the four themed restaurants highlighting Latin American cuisine. Rooms can be booked without meals or with breakfast included, but if you choose the all-inclusive option you’ll get three meals a day, snacks and deluxe alcoholic beverages. Highlights for recent travelers were the four distinct pools.
Note: Some amenities may be impacted by construction, expected to be completed late November 2022.
Fiesta Resort All Inclusive: Chacarita, Puntarenas
Situated about 55 miles from San José, this all-inclusive, family-friendly resort boasts five pools, tropical gardens, a dark volcanic sand beach and a spa. The all-inclusive package covers dining at the property’s four restaurants and seven bars, as well as unlimited alcoholic beverages, soft drinks and juices. Also included are various games and cultural activities, cocktail classes, clubs for kids and teens, mini-golf, tennis and nightly entertainment. The Heliconia Spa offers an array of facials, massages and body treatments. Previous guests loved this property, saying they were highly impressed with the staff’s kindness and hospitality.
You might also be interested in:
More from U.S. News