Costa Rica, Vacation

Strange Things You Can Find in Costa Rica 

May 29, 2024
Carolina Barrientos Carolina Barrientos
Strange Things You Can Find in Costa Rica 

Costa Rica is famous for its beautiful beaches, amazing rainforests, and incredible wildlife. But did you know it also has some really strange and fun attractions?  

This country is not just about stunning landscapes; it’s also a treasure chest of odd and quirky surprises waiting to be discovered. 

In this article, we will take you on a wild ride through some of the weirdest and most wonderful sights of Costa Rica. From mysterious stone balls and legendary pirate treasures to rivers that look like they’re straight out of a fairy tale, get ready to explore the unusual side of this incredible country. 

Whether you’re a curious traveler or just love a good story, these unique spots in Costa Rica will surprise and delight you. So, pack your sense of adventure and join us as we explore the strange and fantastic things that make Costa Rica truly special.  

Let’s dive into the unexpected and have some fun along the way! 

Mysterious places in Costa Rica

Stone Spheres of Diquís 


Imagine stumbling upon perfectly round stone balls scattered across the landscape! The Stone Spheres of Diquís are one of Costa Rica’s most mysterious attractions. These spheres vary in size, with some as small as a tennis ball and others as large as a car. No one knows for sure how or why they were made, but they are believed to be the handiwork of ancient peoples, possibly for astronomical or ceremonial purposes. 

History and Discovery: 

These stone spheres of Costa Rica were discovered in the 1930s by workers clearing land for banana plantations in the Diquís Delta. Since then, they have puzzled archaeologists and historians alike. Some think they were created by the Diquís culture, which thrived around 600-1500 AD. The precise craftsmanship and alignment of these spheres suggest they held significant cultural or spiritual importance. 

Current Status: 

Today, you can see these mysterious stone spheres in various locations across Costa Rica, including the National Museum in San José and the Finca 6 Archaeological Site. They are also recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site, highlighting their global importance and ensuring their protection for future generations. 

The Turquoise Water of Rio Celeste 


Have you ever seen a river that looks like it’s been painted bright blue? That’s Rio Celeste, a stunning natural wonder in Costa Rica. The vibrant turquoise color of the river is a breathtaking sight, surrounded by lush tropical forests and beautiful waterfalls. 

Scientific Explanation: 

The magical blue color of Rio Celeste is due to a natural chemical reaction. When volcanic minerals mix with the river water, they reflect sunlight, making the water appear bright blue. It’s like nature’s own version of a magic trick! 

Hiking and Regulations: 

You can hike through Tenorio Volcano National Park to see this amazing river. The trail takes you through the rainforest, past bubbling hot springs and scenic viewpoints. There are strict regulations in place to keep this natural wonder pristine. These regulations include staying on marked trails and not swimming in the river. These rules help preserve the beauty of Rio Celeste for everyone to enjoy. 

Cocos Island Treasure Legends 

Historical Background: 

Cocos Island is like a real-life pirate movie set! This remote island was a favorite hideout for pirates in the 17th and 18th centuries. Legends say that infamous pirates buried their treasures here, including gold, silver, and precious jewels. 

Exploration Stories: 

Over the years, many treasure hunters have tried their luck at finding these hidden riches. Some expeditions have uncovered intriguing clues, but the legendary treasures remain elusive. These stories continue to capture the imagination of adventurers and dreamers from around the world. 

Conservation Status: 

While the tales of buried treasure are fascinating, Cocos Island is also a treasure trove of natural beauty. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its rich marine life and pristine ecosystems. Conservation efforts are in place to protect this natural paradise, ensuring that its real treasures—the diverse wildlife and untouched landscapes—are preserved for future generations. 

Costa Rica unique attractions

The Witch’s Rock 

Legend and Location: 

The Witch’s Rock, or “Roca Bruja,” is shrouded in local myths and legends. Located in Santa Rosa National Park, this towering rock formation is said to be haunted by a witch who, according to folklore, cursed the rock and the surrounding area. The eerie stories and the rock’s imposing presence give it an air of mystery and intrigue. 

Surfing Hotspot: 

Despite its spooky legends, Witch’s Rock is a paradise for surfers. It’s famous for its excellent surfing conditions, offering consistent waves that attract surfers from all over the world. The rock creates unique wave patterns, making it a must-visit spot for those looking to catch the perfect wave. 

Cultural Significance: 

Beyond its surfing appeal, Witch’s Rock holds a special place in local folklore. The stories of the witch and her curses are part of the rich tapestry of Costa Rican myths, adding a cultural and historical dimension to this natural wonder. It’s a place where adventure and legend meet, captivating both surfers and storytellers alike. 

The Quetzal Sanctuary 


The Quetzal Sanctuary is a haven for one of the most mystical and colorful birds in the Americas—the quetzal. Known for its vibrant plumage and long tail feathers, the quetzal symbolizes freedom and beauty in many Central American cultures. This sanctuary is dedicated to protecting these stunning bird species of Costa Rica and their natural habitat. 

Conservation Efforts: 

Efforts to protect the quetzal involve preserving the cloud forests where they live, ensuring these birds have a safe and thriving environment. Conservationists work tirelessly to monitor quetzal populations, restore their habitats, and educate the public about the importance of these magnificent creatures. 

Visitor Experience: 

Visitors to the Quetzal Sanctuary have the unique opportunity to spot these elusive birds in their natural setting. Guided tours take bird watchers through lush forests, offering a chance to see quetzals and learn about their behavior and habitat. It’s a magical experience for nature lovers and bird enthusiasts alike. 

The Terraba-Sierpe Wetlands 

Ecological Importance: 

The Terraba-Sierpe Wetlands are one of the largest mangrove ecosystems in Central America. These wetlands are crucial for maintaining the region’s ecological balance, acting as a buffer against storms and a nursery for many marine species. They play a vital role in protecting the coastline and supporting diverse wildlife. 


This area is teeming with life, from colorful birds and playful monkeys to various fish and invertebrates. The mangroves provide shelter and food for numerous species, making the wetlands a biodiversity hotspot. It’s a paradise for ecologists and nature enthusiasts who witness the rich flora and fauna

Conservation Challenges: 

Despite their importance, the Terraba-Sierpe Wetlands face several conservation challenges, including pollution, deforestation, and climate change. Efforts are underway to address these issues through sustainable management practices, community involvement, and stricter environmental regulations to ensure the long-term health of this vital ecosystem. 

Venado Caves 

Formation and Discovery: 

The Venado Caves are formed over millions of years by the erosive power of underground rivers. These are fascinating natural wonders in Costa Rica. These caves were discovered relatively recently, in the 1960s, by a local farmer who stumbled upon them while exploring the area. The caves are a labyrinth of underground passages, chambers, and tunnels carved out of limestone, offering a glimpse into the geological history of the region. 

Unique Features: 

One of the standout features of the Venado Caves is their stunning stalactite and stalagmite formations. These natural sculptures, formed by the slow dripping of mineral-rich water, create a mesmerizing underground landscape. Some formations resemble familiar shapes, such as columns, curtains, and even animal figures, adding to the caves’ allure and mystery. 

Adventure Tourism: 

For those seeking adventure, the Venado Caves offer an exciting spelunking experience. Visitors can explore the narrow passages, crawl through tight spaces, and marvel at the underground waterfalls and rock formations. Guided tours provide helmets and flashlights, ensuring a safe yet thrilling journey into the depths of these ancient caves. It’s a perfect adventure for thrill-seekers and nature lovers alike. 

The UFO Trail of Arenal 


The Arenal region is not only famous for its active volcano in Costa Rica but also for intriguing stories of UFO sightings. Locals and visitors alike have reported mysterious lights and unexplained phenomena in the skies around Arenal. These stories have sparked curiosity and debate, turning the area into a hotspot for UFO enthusiasts and curious travelers. 

Hiking the Trail: 

The UFO Trail offers a unique hiking experience, taking visitors through scenic landscapes with stunning views of Arenal Volcano. The trail is designed to showcase the spots where UFO sightings have been reported, adding an element of mystery and excitement to the hike. Informational signs along the trail provide insights into the sightings and the history of these unexplained events, making it an engaging and educational experience. 

Cultural Phenomenon: 

The tales of UFO sightings have become a significant part of the local culture, contributing to the mystique and allure of the Arenal region. These stories attract tourists and UFO hunters from around the world, boosting local tourism and adding a layer of intrigue to the area’s natural beauty. Whether you’re a skeptic or a believer, the UFO Trail offers a fascinating glimpse into a unique cultural phenomenon that continues to captivate the imagination. 

Costa Rica strange places


Costa Rica is a treasure trove of wonders. These unique attractions add to the tropical charm of the country, inviting you to explore beyond the usual tourist spots.  

Visiting these strange wonders might be overwhelming. Imagine relaxing in a beautiful villa after a day of adventure, surrounded by the natural beauty and unique wonders of Costa Rica. Renting a luxury villa in Costa Rica near these incredible sites can elevate your vacation, offering comfort, privacy, and stunning views right at your doorstep.  

So, step off the beaten path, embrace the unusual, and let the wonders of Costa Rica make your vacation truly unforgettable. Discover the strange, enjoy the luxurious, and experience the extraordinary in this amazing country. 

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