Forecasting the weather in Costa Rica is a tough job. Nobody takes the weather forecasts here seriously as the weathermen are notorious for consistently getting it wrong. That’s no surprise in a country with hundreds of micro climates and where conditions usually don’t depend on high or low-pressure systems, but rather on climatic conditions which change throughout the day.
Oh, and heads up! The apps on your smart phone will always get it wrong as well. They were not made for the tropical weather patterns that we experience here. Take a typical day in the rainy season. Your app will show you ‘rain showers’ but in reality, what it means to say is ‘blue skies and bright sunshine in the morning and then increased cloudiness around noon with some scattered showers in the afternoon’.
So, when is the best time weather-wise to visit Costa Rica? Typically, for visits to Costa Rica in May, June, July and August, you can expect sunny mornings and rain in the afternoons. The weather in December, January, February, March and April is usually dry on the Pacific coast.
But just to add to the impossible forecasting challenge, weather patterns are changing in Costa Rica due to global warming. We just had a week of no rain in the middle of rainy season, and torrential rainfall for a couple of days last January.
All that said, our advice is the following. Don’t have expectations! Enjoy every day as it comes! Make the best out of it no matter what the weather is like. Remember, it’s always warm at the beach, even when it rains. And putting a little bit of ‘rain’ back into the rainforest might make for an even more authentic and memorable experience.
Who knows – maybe Costa Ricans are considered among the happiest people on the planet because they don’t worry so much about the rain or obsess over weather forecasting! See Nat Geo’s report on the topic here.
San Jose, Costa Rica