SAN JOSE, Costa Rica – In response to the latest airline crisis caused by the volcano eruption in Iceland, Costa Rica’s travel industry is offering travelers a variety of enticing promotional travel packages that will allow them to spend their hard-earned vacation days in an exciting destination. Costa Rica’s proximity to North America, convenient flight connections, and diversity of tourism products, will surely please any traveler seeking an alternative vacation spot that delivers a memorable experience.
This small nation, almost the size of West Virginia, is known as much for its leadership in sustainable tourism as it is for its incredible offering of activities and experiences for all types of travelers. Whether someone is looking to be adventurous, relax with the family, explore nature, take in a second honeymoon with someone special, or all of the above, Costa Rica has a special offer in hand. There are over 75 special travel promotions running in the country ranging from additional free nights, great upgrades, up to 50 percent discount on spa treatments, and much more. For a complete list of the hotel properties, tour operators, and car rental companies that are offering special vacation deals, visit http://www.visitcostarica.com/ict/news/IndustrySpecials-VPROMO_May_2010.pdf . Travelers wanting to take advantage of these promotions should mention VPROMO when requesting the special rates.
Spa and well-being vacations are becoming the industry’s newest travel trend, and Costa Rica has been recognized by TripAdvisor users as one of the best places in Central and South America to enjoy spa getaways. Costa Rica gives travelers a variety of ways to rejuvenate and cleanse, including the hot springs near the Arenal Volcano; the tranquil, yoga-infused beaches of the Nicoya Peninsula; or the nature-filled setting of its Central Valley.
Another major attraction of Costa Rica is its beaches. The country boasts over 1,000 miles of coastline, which varies between three types of climates. For surfing enthusiasts, the choices are endless, as well due to the 250 breaking points that can be found on its Pacific and Caribbean coasts. Of course, it caters to those who just wish to take in some sun and relax as well.
For the type of traveler who loves to pump their adrenaline, Costa Rica offers some of the top-rated rivers in the world for white-water rafting, as well as activities like hiking, wind surfing, kite surfing, horseback riding, and much more. Of course, no Costa Rica vacation is complete without an exhilarating zipline tour through the canopies of the forest.
An added appeal for Costa Rica and its position as a Central American tourist destination has been its commitment to giving back to the planet and to its people. Due to these efforts, the country has become an ecological haven, which is hosted by warm people who are proud and eager to show visitors their wonderful land. Their pride is translated into the vast amount of knowledge that they individually possess, turning any vacation to the country into an educational experience, in addition to being adventurous and relaxing. This attention to detail is what keeps visitors coming back to enjoy its natural wonders.
A VACATION THAT GIVES BACK
Travelers can enjoy these great Costa Rica promotions and give back while on vacation. When it comes to sustainable tourism offerings, few can compare to Costa Rica. The Costa Rica Tourist Board has implemented a program called Certification for Sustainable Tourism (CST), designed to promote the implementation of sustainable practices throughout the entire tourism sector, including hotels, tour operators, transportation providers, and best of all, the community. A large portion of the industry participates to some degree and some of the services they offer include recycling, solar heated water, reforestation initiatives, and creating jobs for the people in the surrounding area, among others.
The CST program gives a zero through five “leaf” rating to those operations that meet strict guidelines for sustainable practices — the higher the score, the more green, efficient, and sustainable the operation is. The CST program has become one of the most widely respected sustainable certificate programs, and it has been adopted by the United Nations and the World Tourism Organization as a model, and many countries around the world are employing similar standards. When visiting Costa Rica, travelers can select from the 153 tourist companies that have been certified since the creation of the program. For more information, visit http://www.turismo-sostenible.co.cr/EN/home.shtml .
Sustainability and conservation in the country also extends out into the community through its Blue Flag Ecology (BAE) program. Communities in Costa Rica are given the BAE certification through an evaluation of the quality of the ocean water, quality of drinking water, waste disposal, and availability of sanitary facilities. This distinction is given to those communities who safeguard the environment and maintain necessary sanitary conditions of the water and the areas around it.
ABOUT COSTA RICA
Costa Rica is located in Central America, nestled between Nicaragua and Panama, and bordered on the east by the Caribbean Sea and the west by the Pacific Ocean. This small country represents only .05 percent of the planet’s surface, and it shelters almost 5 percent of the existing world’s biodiversity. It has given priority to the conservation of its natural resources, protecting 26 percent of its national territory through the creation of National Parks and other natural areas. The country also offers world-class, eco-tourism and adventure travel. The options are unlimited for any discriminating traveler: horseback riding on a secluded beach; hiking through the lush whispering greenery of a rainforest; having an exhilarating experience on a white-water rafting trip; observing the tropical forests from a canopy tour; surfing the blue waves of either coast; experiencing a quiet, close encounter with different species of birds and wildlife; and enjoying the diverse culture and hospitality of the Ticos.
ABOUT THE COSTA RICA TOURIST BOARD
The Costa Rica Tourist Board, created in 1955, is an autonomous institution of the state, responsible for regulating the tourism activity in Costa Rica and promoting Costa Rica’s tourism attractions and destinations, both at a national and international level. The Costa Rica Tourist Board creates tourism norms, regulations, and incentives, and grants the tourist declaratory for Costa Rica’s hotels, travel agencies, rental cars, and other tourism organizations and service providers.
For general travel or tourism information about Costa Rica, contact the Costa Rica Tourist Board directly at 1-866-267-8274 or visit their web site at www.visitcostarica.com .