One of the most interesting and colorful times to visit Costa Rica is during the annual Easter holidays. Starting with an extended period of fasting and religious penitence known as Lent, Costa Rica transitions into Easter with an entire week of festivities known as Holy Week in English and “Semana Santa” in Spanish.
In Costa Rica, the Lent period usually falls during a time of extremely beautiful weather. With long, sunny days and pleasant air temperatures, the weather seemingly cooperates with enthusiastic Catholic celebrations of their faith. Just about every town and village in Costa Rica organizes street processions that include re-enactments of the trials and tribulations of Jesus Christ, culminating in a crucifixion.
The capital, San Jose, along with towns like Cartago, San Joaquin de Flores, and Cartago are renowned for their elaborate processions. Thousands of visitors flock to these areas every year in order to marvel at traditional costumes as well as partake in the religious fervor ahead of the most important annual event on the Christian calendar.
Easter is much more than a time to witness the religious processions and celebrations. Special foods are prepared in Costa Rica during Easter time, including a lot of fish dishes due to Catholic prohibitions on eating animal flesh during the Lenten period. Popular options in Costa Rica include fish soup, fried fish, shrimp and rice, and seafood ceviches. Costa Ricans also enjoy special desserts made from a combination of brown sugar, coconuts, papaya, and pumpkin and sweet treats made with locally sourced honey and palm hearts.
Starting on the Thursday before Easter Sunday, all government offices and most shops close across the country. The four-day Easter weekend is popular with both locals and visitors alike as a great chance to explore the great outdoors, including trips to national forests, swimming and surfing on the beach, and touring some of Costa Rica’s volcanoes and cloud forests.
If you’re interested in visiting Costa Rica during the Lent and Easter holiday season, book your trip with the Endless Olas Surf Camp. Located on Costa Rica’s magnificent Pacific Coast, Endless Olas (Spanish for “Endless Waves”) has exclusive access to some of the best beaches, breaks, and river mouth areas that are perfect for surfing.
Endless Olas has an expert team of surf coaches that offer personalized instruction to surfers of all levels. Endless Olas also organizes tours to the top attractions in the region, including horseback riding adventures, whitewater rafting, and explorations of the most beautiful natural areas in Costa Rica’s national parks.