Gabar Goes Global: Top 5 Things to do in Costa Rica

Hi there! Welcome back to GabarIskuFilan—a radical feminist solo female travel blog. I write about solo female travel, Black liberation and leaving Islam among other controversial topics. I love exploring the world on my own terms. As someone forced into a misogynistic faith, solo female travel is the ultimate form of defiance. I’ve always had to ask for permission to leave the house and bring a chaperone with me. Costa Rica was the first country I’ve visited as a solo female traveler. If you read travel blogs, you’ll know that Costa Rica ranks very high in terms of safety, adventure, and its laid-back attitude.

Personally, I had a much better experience as a Black woman in Colombia than I did in Costa Rica. It’s a bit too touristy for my liking. I was often the only Black person on all of my tours. Costa Rica is also very expensive. When I do go back, I really want to explore the Caribbean side (where the Black people are). Overall, I felt very safe. Waking up and being surrounded by clouds while sipping a cup of cafe con leche was incredible. Here are 5 things to do in Costa Rica!

1. Visit the adrenaline-rush capital of Costa Rica

After you fly into San Jose International Airport, catch a private shuttle or a public bus to Monteverde. Get ready to have the adventure of your life! While in Monteverde, I went bungee jumping, ziplining, white water rafting, and canyoning. Costa Rica’s zip lines are unparalleled. Imagine soaring above an active volcano. Unreal. Honestly, I would go back just to go ziplining again. I had so much fun.

2. Visit the Caribbean side

The Pacific side of Costa Rica is very touristy (La Fortuna, Monteverde, Manuel Antonio, etc), but the Caribbean side is a respite from the hustle and bustle of tourism. Limon, Puerto Viejo, and Tortuguero are famous for their beaches, eco-tourism and community-led enterprises.

3. Celebrate Black History Month in Costa Rica

Black history month is celebrated during the month of August. Limón is integral to the historical legacy of Black liberation. Marcus Garvey arrived in the coastal city in 1910 as a labor organizer. The legacy of slavery is often ignored in the consciousness of Costa Rican history. The intersection between race, labor, migration, and liberation continues.  Afro-Costa Ricans continue to face racial, economic, political and intergenerational struggles towards freedom. We’re not truly free anywhere.

4. Bring seasoning lol

Omg, I wish I knew to bring seasoning! Costa Rican food is very bland (to me). I ate so much rice and beans. Every single day. I just kept eating the same thing. Also, salt is not seasoning.

5. Pura Vida

Pura Vida translates to “pure life.” It encompasses the very essence of Tico life. I think it’s a national slogan or something. Life is simple here. I enjoyed the hospitality of Ticos. They’re very welcoming people. Tourism (eco-tourism specifically) is huge there. I definitely recommend Costa Rica for solo female travelers.



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