Keep a streetwise attitude, leave your car empty of valuables in a guarded lot and never put your bag in the overhead racks on a bus. Click here to get an offer for travel insurance. Violent crime is extremely rare in Costa Rica, but theft is a concern. or Museo de Nino as it is known. Visit the Embassy's COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 in Costa Rica. Gridlocked traffic, gigantic potholes, noise and smog are unavoidable components of the San José experience. Escazu is a suburb of San Jose in the Central Valley of Costa Rica. Neighborhoods covered by Lonely Planet are generally safe during the day, though you should be especially careful around the Coca-Cola bus terminal and the red-light district south of Parque Central, particularly at night. I want emails from Lonely Planet with travel and product information, promotions, advertisements, third-party offers, and surveys. As in most tourist destinations, travelers are targets for pickpockets. San José transitions from a commercial block of department stores, chic cafés, and fast-food establishments to the haphazard residential areas characteristic of Latin America. San Jose gives endless opportunities for adventure and it is considered a paradise of Central America. Uber is illegal and there have been attacks on Uber cars by taxi unions as well as cars impounded by police. San Jose, Costa Rica is often the forgotten destination of this beautiful country known for its lush jungles and amazing beaches. Exercise caution when walking around at all times, and take taxis at night. Be advised that adjacent neighborhoods can vary greatly in terms of safety; inquire locally before setting out. (About 30 minutes away) There is lodging of all sorts and all prices and you can easily do some exploring of the surrounding area, do a coffee tour, visit Zoo Ave, head for Braulio Carrillo National Park, go to Poas Volcano, etc. The question pains me a little for implying that San Jose either ought to be entertaining to visitors who likely know little about the country or isn’t worth seeing. While the city is not a top destination for visitors, San José has a few attractions for visitors to consider, as well as numerous restaurants, museums, outdoor markets, and p… In Escazu you’ll find great bars, restaurants, shopping, and medical care. Downtown San José, Costa Rica is a lively city. These officers can be helpful in the event of an emergency since most of them speak at least some English. Driving in Costa Rica is a topic that is often discussed in the planning stages of a Costa Rica Escapes’ itinerary. Costa Rica has lifted stay at home orders and resumed some transportation options and business operations. The majority of them experience no troubles while traveling in the country. After getting comfortable there I also walked home a few times alone at midnight. I can unsubscribe any time using the unsubscribe link at the end of all emails. San José is the capital of Costa Rica but tends to be treated as a way station. The establishment in 2007 of the policía turística (tourist police; you’ll see them patrolling in pairs around San José, on foot, bicycle and even horseback) has helped prevent petty crimes against foreigners. San José is the capital and largest city of Costa Rica, and the capital of the province of the same name. How to stay safe in San Jose - don't go to San Jose, it's a fool-proof solution!! All rights reserved. San José is Costa Rica's seat of national government, focal point of political and economic activity, and major transportation hub. No part of this site may be reproduced without our written permission. Covid-19 Costa Rica Travel Restrictions and Border Opening Alajuela is where you want to stay if you want to remain close to the airport. In the city itself there is maybe half a day to a day's worth of stuff to do. The closeness of the beaches makes it normal to wear beachwear, but rural areas demand more modest dressing. When solo female travelers are in question, it is safe to travel to Costa Rica. In comparison to other cities in Costa Rica, San Jose has a higher rate of crime. ). Assistance: U.S. Embassy San Jose, Costa Rica +506 2519 2000 (after hours as well) [email protected] Answer 1 of 3: More concretely, my plan is to walk from hotel to the bus station early in the morning (5-10 minutes' walk around 6 in the morning), will that put me in particular danger? San José Canton's population was 288,054 in 2011, and San José's municipal land area is 44.2 square kilometers (17.2 square miles), with an estimated 333,980 residents in 2015. Crime is a very serious problem and tourists need to keep a watchful eye on their personal belongings. Costa Rica's graceful, modernist 35,000-seat national soccer stadium, constructed with funding from the Chinese government and opened in 2011, is the venue for international and national Division 1 fútbol (soccer) games. Currently, the area with the most cases is the Greater Metropolitan Area (GAM) which includes San Jose, Alajuela, Cartago and Heredia. Due to its location and climate, San Jose is prone to flooding and landslides during heavy rains, hurricane risks from June to November, as well as volcanoes and extreme weather conditions. You just need to pay attention to your clothing and showing off the expensive electrical gadgets. Visiting San Jose, Costa Rica. Answer 1 of 11: Going to Costa Rica next week , staying in the San Jose city for one whole day, is it safe to walk about in day and go walk bout and out for dinner at night? It is usually packed with tourists during the day and it is a generally safe city, but the situation gets worse during the night. Traffic in Costa Rica is risky, and pedestrians are not respected, so it is advisable to cross the street in a group. That’s not to say you won’t feel safe everywhere. Joking aside, same thing strikes me as did Hattie. This is where the airport is located and is much much nicer and safer than San Jose. 18 Mar, 2019 in Costa Rica tagged Costa Rica / Edificio Central de Correos y Telégrafos / Museo de Jade / San José / Travel blog by Benjamin White San José, capital city of Costa Rica, has a rather unusual founding story – at least it does in comparison to other Central American capitals. A lot of people are currently wondering how safe is San Jose Costa Rica – if you do visit, we recommend staying in a nice San Jose hostel or a backpackers lodge. Be extremely careful when in public transport and crowded areas in front of the monuments. Caribbean and Pacific white sand beaches are also extremely popular and among top holiday destinations. However, on your way to Costa Rica, San Jose is a likely stop before you head off to other destinations such as Monteverde (which is beautiful by the way! Petty crime is most frequent in the capital city of San Jose, where pick pocketing, mugging, and purse snatching occur. Located in the center of Costa Rica, San Jose is the epicenter of government, economic activity, cultural events and is the major transportation and education hub of Costa Rica. 20 Tips for Staying Safe in Costa Rica. Keep a streetwise attitude, leave your car empty of valuables in a guarded lot and never put your bag in the overhead racks on a bus. More than three million tourists enjoy Costa Rica each year. Having in mind the fact that recent history has no records of terrorism in San Jose tourists can feel free and safe. It is usually packed with tourists during the day and it is a generally safe city, but the situation gets worse during the night. San Jose is the capital of Costa Rica and found in the Central Valley. If you find yourself the victim of a crime, you’ll have to file a report in person at the Organismo de Investigacíon Judicial in the Supreme Court of Justice building on the south side of downtown. Keeps your wits about you and you can enjoy everything it has to offer. However, suspicious activity is always possible, so remain attentive. State Department – Consular Affairs 888-407-4747 or 202-501-4444 Once a tourist decides to visit a certain city, the main question is the safety standards of travelers there. Very rarely do we recommend or suggest that our clients handle their own driving, and if we do, the traveler(s) have asked us about the practicality of renting a car for their trip. ), violent crimes (being mugged or robbed, being attacked or insulted), corruption and other crimes. Though Costa Rica has the lowest crime rate of any Central American country, crime in urban centers such as San José is a problem. Be careful walking streets, especially at night, and always take the same precautions you would in any big city. San Jose is the capital city and the largest city in Costa Rica, and with a population of about 288,000, is home to over a third of the country's population. If you happen to be the victim of this kind of crime, it is better to give them your money and valuables than to resist. Answer 1 of 3: More concretely, my plan is to walk from hotel to the bus station early in the morning (5-10 minutes' walk around 6 in the morning), will that put me in particular danger? The city is the site of the University of Costa Rica (1940), the oldest and most diverse of San José’s four public universities. Machismo is still dominant in Costa Rica, so just do not pay attention to shouting or whistling and try to ignore them. Car theft is also very frequent, so make sure that you parked your vehicle in locked fence areas. Pay close attention to your surroundings in crowded locations, particularly when using public transport. Massage and Spa San Jose Costa Rica offers different professional massage therapy in and around San Jose. However, no country can be absolutely perfect. The Government of Costa Rica is investigating the situation and the Embassy remains in contact Costa Rica authorities regarding the ongoing investigation. © 2020 Copyright by Travel Safe - Abroad. As long as you bear in mind the economic situation and machismo in San Jose, and practice common sense, you will remain safe while in the city. Be skeptical of touts and taxi drivers who try to sell you tours or tell you that the hotel you’ve booked is a crime-infested bordello. Costa Rica has divided the country up in two areas: Orange and Yellow Alert. I would say that San Jose downtown is a safe city just avoid to stay in hotels near the Costa Rican Center of Science and Culture. Also, tourists need to watch out their credit cards. Even if you are an experienced driver, driving on unfamiliar and ill conditioned roads in Costa Rica can be a challenge. It is worth noting that San José is not as safe as most other destinations in Costa Rica. Safety In San José. That's not something I recommend but I'm alive to talk about it today. It’s important to keep your valuables on you in transit and keep them locked up when at your accommodation, ideally in a portable safe . Orange is for areas with more confirmed coronavirus cases. The Simon Bolivar Zoo: While the zoo showcases a whole host of Costa Rica’s endemic animal species, it’s no match to seeing them in the wild. Visiting Escazu Costa Rica. Costa Rica Golf Day Tours (Tours to Valle del Sol, Cariari and Marriott Los Suenos), ☎ (732) 917-0177, . The most common offense is opportunistic theft (eg pickpocketing and mugging). The most common offense is opportunistic theft (eg pickpocketing and mugging). Also, the area around the Coca Cola Bus Terminal is very deserted and risky. High-level strategies when stealing, like spilling something on you, is applied on the streets of San Jose. Petty crime and car theft are very frequent and the area to be avoided is Hatillo, a district full of drug dealers. Costa Rica’s stability and democratic reputation attract sizable numbers of foreign students to these universities and to the numerous private universities scattered throughout San José. Costa Rica’s Response to COVID-19. In comparison to other cities in Costa Rica, San Jose has a higher rate of crime. Togeth… © 2020 Lonely Planet. Never let luggage or bags out of your sight, and store small valuables in your hotel safe. The capital city of Costa Rica is located on a plateau at 1200 m elevation, surrounded by mountains and valleys. In general, Costa Rica is an incredibly safe country to travel through. Teatro Nacional de Costa Rica: Founded in 1897, San José’s National Theater is one of Costa Rica’s grandest architectural attractions. It is in the centre of the country, in the mid-west of the Central Valley, within San José Canton. Costa Rica is mostly safe, with 1.9 million visitors annually making it a popular travel destination. Shows how much people think the problem in their community are property crimes (home broken, car theft, etc. That's it. Otherwise I spent two months in San Pedro/Zapote which are suburbs of San Jose and both places were extremely safe. However, it’s still important to take certain precautions to minimize your chances of encountering any natural or crime-related threats. There were reports of tourists being mugged and robbed in San Jose at night. The museum is pretty nice, unfortunately it is not located in a very safe area. Information about crime in San Jose, Costa Rica. Because it is such a large city, tourism services are the most extensive in the country. You'll think differently after checking out the best things to do here in this lively city. However, there are dangers that come with such destinations – mostly in the form of pickpockets and petty theft such as purse snatching, armed robberies, and carjacking, so tourists should exercise caution. Petty crime is the biggest risk in Costa Rica, particularly in San Jose and on public transportation throughout the country. Taxi drivers are constantly trying to overcharge the negligent passengers. Check the … Be aware that prostitutes are known for sleight-of-hand, and that they often work in pairs. Tours . Also avoid carrying around valuables, backpacks or other items that invite pickpockets. Most central hotels are subject to street noise, no matter how nice they are. 2. You can book couples massage, Thai massage, sports massage, hot stone massage, relaxing massage, Swedish massage and many more. Many of them will say anything to steer you to the places that pay them commissions. It is home to one of the best shopping malls in San Jose, the Multiplaza Escazu, the modern Hospital La Cima and several high-end hotels. Some of the most visited museums are Museo de Oro Precolombino and Museo del Jade. Once you need to take a taxi, use only those that are red or orange and bear in mind that it is safer to call them than to stop them on the street. He offers tourists miscellaneous cultural, architectural and historical venues with numerous museums, galleries, parks, and markets. Uber is only present in San Jose metropolitan town areas.. A good option is as suggested above is arranging private drivers for longer trips and asking the hotels for transfers locally. San Jose is the most populous city and its population is probably half of the whole Costa Rica. It has become a modern, cosmopolitan city and is presently home a third of the country’s entire population. Costa Rica’s political and economic situation is stable and strong, and the country was actually voted the “happiest nation” in the world! If you carefully watch your belongings and do not show off your wealth, you will not attract attention and will not become a possible prey. However have not heard of any issues to passengers from Uber drivers. Road safety. Why, with a whole 5 days, are you wasting it in SJO? Popular places to live include Escazu and Santa Ana, on the west side of the city. Much better to get out and about and see some of CR in that time. 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