Set in tropical rainforests and glittering beaches, as well as colourful towns and majestic volcanoes, holidays of a lifetime happen in Costa Rica. Over a quarter of this paradise on earth is protected, so you can explore unspoilt beaches, swim in crystal clear waters and trek to the top of cloud-touching mountains, thanks to the abundance of national parks and nature reserves. When you're visiting somewhere as beautiful as Costa Rica, you need accommodation to match. So, here's our pick of the best hotels.
Walk through the grounds of the Riu Palace Costa Rica Hotel and you'll soon find yourself on the soft sands of the Playa de Matapalo Beach, overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The bright blue waters contrast beautifully with the velvety green hills and mountains behind the hotel. The hotel's palatial pinnacles and domes put a futuristic twist on the classic design, while the boutique-style rooms are something to marvel at. With a gorgeous pool and four a la carte restaurants, there's always something to be enjoyed.
If you're after an indulgent, luxurious holiday, then head to Dreams Las Mareas. You'll have access to a private stretch of beach, a first-class Pevonia® spa and a dining scene full of gourmet options. Thanks to your entire getaway being all inclusive, you can enjoy everything from delicious meals to fine wines, with no concerns as to extra costs. The golden sands, lagoon pool and stylish hotel are nestled into a cocoon of mountain and jungle landscapes, giving it a heavenly off-the-beaten-track appeal.
At Esplendor Tamarindo, you get the best of both worlds. Relax in the quiet grounds as you sample the spa and its treatments, the pool and the comforts of your own room, then head up to the sun terrace and soak up the gorgeous ocean views as you try out the cocktail menu. When you're ready for a change of scenery, you can take the free shuttle bus to the Langosta Beach Club. Once there, you'll have access to the pool and the seafront restaurant.
Head to Secrets Papagayo and experience luxury like nowhere else can offer! This adults-only hotel sits on its own private bay overlooking the Pacific Ocean, surrounded by tropical jungles teeming with wildlife. Not only are you right on the beach, but you also have exclusive access to a large infinity pool, first-class spa, reservation-free gourmet dining and poolside waiter service. When you head up to your room, the views get even better. Each room has a spectacular ocean vista, and comes with a private terrace or balcony for sunset appreciation.