sunset at Hacienda Pinilla

Rain or shine, in sun or by sunset, the green season in Costa Rica is an incredible time to visit. But shhh! Don’t spread the word.

The term “rainy season” doesn’t sound very romantic, does it? And yet, “green season in Costa Rica” feels like it’s nudging into the realm of euphemism – of an invented term designed to gloss over the wet realities of Costa Rica’s rainiest months. But is that really the truth?

Let’s start by comparing apples to apples: “snow, ice, and interminable gray sky season” isn’t exactly a cheery alternative name for “winter,” either. So yes, we’ll start with this: Costa Rica’s rainy season is rainy, in the same way that U.S., Canadian, and most European winters are cold and gray.

But here’s the difference: Generally speaking, most people dread the onset of winter chill. By contrast, Costa Rica welcomes the rain – and looks forward to it, even! Because here, the Costa Rica rainy season is something to celebrate. Something we love. Something you might just love, too.

Here’s why:

  1. It Doesn’t Rain as Much as You Think

Full disclaimer: In much of Costa Rica, “wet” doesn’t even begin to describe the rainy season. But here at Hacienda Pinilla, we’re blessed with a sunnier, more arid climate, thanks to our provincial home of Guanacaste, Costa Rica’s driest province.

To put it into day-to-day terms, the green season usually dawns as sunny as any other day of the year, transitions to a short (1-3 hour) rain shower in the afternoon, and clears in plenty of time for a spectacular, cloud-dappled sunset.

  1. Wait, HOW Many Shades of Green Are There?

Costa Rica green season scenery

Think you’ve seen green? We have dozens of shades!

Not to overstate the obvious, but the green season is named for its hue: green. Except, in Costa Rica, the shade is a rainbow unto itself: apple, jade, beryl, kelly, moss, sage, chartreuse, verdigris, and, well, about a hundred more! are all on beautiful display.

And they all appear distinctly different. The first time you see it (and every subsequent time you really look) it’s startling: Costa Rica’s all-green landscapes are far from monotone; they’re a kaleidoscope of emerald epiphytes and olive mosses, pine-colored grasses and lime-green trees. And oh, is it a sight to see! Ready your cameras.

  1. The Deals Can Be Incredible

One of the best secrets of the green season in Costa Rica? You can get serious value for your money, not only in listed prices but on extras and inclusions.

First things first: If you love a great deal, then you’ll appreciate the bottom line during green season. Not only are these the lowest prices of the year, but they’re objectively low – often, up to 70% off peak-season and holiday-season prices. That means you can level-up your luxury or add on more experiences, without upping your budget.

What’s more, you’ll find that green season rentals often add a variety of perks. From tours and private chefs to airport transportation and spa services, if you peruse your options (or just ask us, if you need a shortcut!), you’ll find that there are plenty of extras to be had.

And if all that still isn’t enough to tip you into green-season vacation territory, then consider that these months also offer greater availability. And when you realize that many of Hacienda Pinilla’s most popular homes book up 12-18+ months (or more) in advance, especially during peak times, being able to snag a reservation for a home you love is just the cherry on top of that airfare flash sale, long weekend, or last-minute getaway.

  1. Hacienda Pinilla Belongs to You

Sugar Beach near Hacienda Pinilla

Hacienda Pinilla’s spectacular beaches include Langosta, Mansita, and Avellanas.

When the rains begin, Hacienda Pinilla (and Tamarindo, to some extent) feel a bit more like small towns. Incredibly well-equipped, often luxurious small towns, but small (or smaller) towns, nonetheless!

Almost overnight, the beaches are less crowded. It’s easier to snag a primetime seat at a beloved café. There’s never any competition for your favorite beach spot, or the best surfing wave, or that perfectly shaded reading bench.

Indeed, from May through November, Hacienda Pinilla quiets down. Often, you’ll look around and feel like it’s a best-kept secret known only to you and the community’s lucky residents. It’s a different side of Hacienda Pinilla, one known only to a select few – to those of us who buck the trend and visit during the green season in Costa Rica.

  1. Costa Rica Bursts with Life

Costa Rica’s rainy season brings fresh life. The cracked ground becomes pliant. Fresh buds, blooms, and leaves erupt. Heliconia, tropical flowers, orchids and hundreds of other colorful blossoms spring to action.

And it’s not just the plant life, either: The green season welcomes baby animals, so it’s not uncommon to spot tiny sloths clinging to their mothers, or young monkeys learning to swing in the trees. Not to mention, olive ridley turtle arribadas (mass nesting) get into full swing between July and December.

In fact, there’s a whole host of activities that are better during the green season. They include:

  • Whale-Watching: Did you know that the best months for whale-watching in Costa Rica are August and September? That’s right – towards the tail-end of the green season, many coastal areas witness near-daily sightings, thus increasing your chances of success.
  • Great Surfing: As the rivers swell and climatic conditions pick up, the Tamarindo area’s waves often crest overhead. For serious surfers, this can be the absolute best time of year, so don’t miss it!
  • Sea Turtle Nesting: During the green season in Costa Rica, olive ridley turtles are nesting at both Santa Rosa National Park and Ostional Wildlife Refuge – north and south of Hacienda Pinilla, respectively. If you can, visit Ostional during an arribada (mass nesting event) and, luck be with you, you could spot hundreds of turtles, both nesting and hatching!
  • Sport Fishing: Tales of Tamarindo’s legendary sport fishing get even taller during the rainy season months, when large marlin (especially, blue and striped marlin) are in town. You’ll also have a chance to hook large specimens of yellowfin tuna, mahi-mahi, and other prized (and tasty) catches.
  • Sunsets: While you may not come just for the sunset, Costa Rica’s rainy season sunsets are truly spectacular! There’s something about the climate just after a shower, when the pressure is high and the skies are spotted with puffy clouds… there’s nothing like it!
  1. And When It Does Rain, Wow!

You know how you felt as a kid, when you awoke to a window framing falling snow? Live the excitement and wonder again – and again and again and again – every time Mother Nature blesses Hacienda Pinilla with an aguacero, or torrential downpour.

True talk: Rain in the U.S. and Canada simply can’t compare; here, thick sheets of rain sluice the sky; puddles appear in seconds; and the sound is deafening. We can’t think of a cozier setting or more apropos moment for a light blanket, a cup of tea/coffee/cocoa, and a good book.

And, as long as it’s safe, this is also the perfect ambiance for sitting out on your private terrace, balcony, or pool deck and watching the clouds roll in, the sky roil, and the lightning touch ground in the middle distance. It’s the kind of spectacular sight and extraordinary experience you’ll carry with you into vacation nostalgia.

If you’re lucky enough to be here during the Costa Rica rainy season, then you’ll quickly grow to love, and even anticipate, these rainy afternoons.

Where to Stay during the Green Season in Costa Rica

When you stay at Hacienda Pinilla, you have a bit of a built-in buffer: Sunny morning? Take a quick stroll to a nearby beach. Clear skies this afternoon? Book a last-minute round of golf! Forecast says rain? It’s the perfect time for a spa appointment.

Hacienda Pinilla offers an array of amenities, including a luxury Beach Club, championship golf, tennis courts, horseback riding stables, hiking and biking trails, onsite restaurants, a spa, and more.

Casa Navidad

4 Beds | 5 Baths | 12 Guests

Casa Navidad luxury vacation rental

Welcome to everything you could want for and from your vacation: a luxurious retreat that combines minimalism and coziness, to create hygge (an environment of quiet comfort) and high design. Best of all, it’s just 200 meters (0.2 miles) to a secluded beach, accessible only to guests.

There is so much to love about this spacious and upscale home. We’ll start with the bedrooms: There are four, each with ensuite bathrooms, king-sized beds, and TVs with cable. Here, no one draws the short straw! And then, there is the spacious and fully equipped kitchen, the inviting living room, and the incredible outdoor living spaces, which include a shaded terrace, outdoor living room, and indoor-outdoor dining with a grill, wet bar, ice maker, and wine refrigerator.

Welcome to where you’ll never want to leave! Because it gets better, thanks plus exclusives of its own, including a game room, private library, and a covered outdoor living and dining room. Thanks to your private pool and pickleball court! And did we mention? Part of our Elite Service tier, your reservation includes daily housekeeping, breakfast, laundry, and more. Welcome to paradise!

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Casa Serena

5 Beds | 5 Baths | 10 Guests

Casa Serena vacation rental Hacienda Pinilla

Where no luxury is spared, Casa Serena fulfills your every vacation dream. It begins the moment arrive: This beachfront mansion welcomes you walk into luxury via a bridge and koi pond. Follow your feet into a majestic great room, where your eyes are drawn to both a magnificent spiral staircase and jaw-dropping Pacific views.

Labyrinthine interiors criss-cross through Casa Serena, weaving through the luxuries, amenities and comforts that fulfill even unspoken hopes: a custom infinity pool, surrounded by sprawling terrace and a striking shade tree; a chef-ready kitchen, prepped for everything from morning coffee to gourmet meals; and four independent bedroom suites, so no one pulls the short straw.

And then, of course, there’s the ocean views and short walk to the sand – the reasons you’re here. There’s the private fitness room, a private sauna, and… wait for it… private spa facilities. Because we really do believe that you can have it all and give nothing up. This is vacation, after all!

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Free Concierge Services at Hacienda Pinilla

The green season in Costa Rica is a wonderful time to visit! That said, you’ll want to be sure you’ve planned well, not only to account for possible rains but also to guarantee that you’re not missing out on any of those only-this-time-of-year activities and sights.

Did you know that, when you reserve your Hacienda Pinilla vacation home with us, you gain access to our full concierge services? And by that, we mean an on-the-ground expert whose job is to explore, engage, and do everything. Cris knows her national parks in Guanacaste, Costa Rica!

When you book with us, we’ll get in touch to help you plan all the details of your stay. Our job is to get to know you, so we can help you plan the trip of your dreams. Whether you just need help arranging transportation or would like a full itinerary – everything from your airport shuttle to a full trip’s worth of activities, private chef services, and golf cart rental – we’re happy to help.

Even better, our concierge services are always free. So, why wait? Get in touch and let’s get started!