With three days in San Jose, you can relax into the city’s natural rhythm, which blends the sounds of tropical birdsong, bustling markets, and salsa beats. You’ll have plenty of time to take in the key sights, including Costa Rica’s lush rain forest, volcanic peaks, and coffee farms. Here’s how.
Children's Museum (Museo de los Ninos)
Calle 4, San Jose, 10101
The whimsical painted exterior of the Children’s Museum hides a surprising history. The building was formerly a penitentiary with a brutal reputation. After the prison closed, it lay empty until the former first lady of Costa Rica, Gloria Bejarano de Calderon, had the idea of creating an informative space for children. The museum is dedicated to the idea of learning through playing and exploring, and welcomes many thousands of visitors each year.
Visit the Children’s Museum on its own with a skip-the-line ticket or as part of a sightseeing tour of San Jose.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Entry to the museum is via paid ticket.
- The museum hosts special exhibitions along with the permanent collection.
- There is a cafeteria on-site.
- Children can see live animals in the farm exhibit.
How to Get There
The Children’s Museum is located at Avenida 9, Calle 4, just north of downtown in San Jose, Costa Rica’s capital city. It is reachable by taxi—walking to the museum is not recommended.
When to Get There
The museum is open Tuesday to Friday, 8am–4:30pm, and Saturday and Sunday, from 9:30am–5pm. The museum is closed Mondays. Last entry is one hour before closing time.
Get Some Fresh Air in Sabana Park With 175 acres (71 hectares) of forest green space crossed with walking trails, Sabana Park is the perfect antidote to a day of city sightseeing in San Jose. Open grassy areas invite soccer games and picnic parties, while the outdoor swimming pool is a great place to cool off from the hot Costa Rican sun.
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- San Jose Central Market (Mercado Central)
- Jade Museum (Museo del Jade)
- Metallic Building (Ed)ificio Metálico)
- Plaza de la Cultura
- Yellow House (Casa Amarilla)
- Gold Museum
- National Theater (Teatro Nacional)
- National Museum (Museo Nacional)
- Morazan Park
- Braulio Carrillo National Park
- Costa Rican Art Museum (Museo de Arte Costarricense)
- La Sabana Park
- Rescate Animal Zooave
- Orosi River Valley (El Valle del Rio Orosi)