Renown travel website Lonely Planet recognized Costa Rica in its Best in Travel 2021 Awards, “We decided to make this year’s Best in Travel different by recognizing places and people demonstrating a genuine commitment to sustainability, community and diversity”, reads the message of Lonely Planets’ CEO Luis Cabrera.
Costa Rica received the award under the “Diversity” category specifically as the Most Accessible Destination.
“Stitching together deep virgin rainforests with smoldering volcanoes, cowlicks of soft, seashell-pink sand and cities sparkling with colonial architecture, Costa Rica really has it all. A law which prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities and enforces a degree of accessibility in hotels and public places means it’s a fantastic accessible-friendly destination too”, describes the website.
Cahuita National Park in Limón, became the first National Park to be accessible for people with disabilities back in 2019. Jacó in the Central Pacific also has a 63 meter long ramp (206.70 ft.) built with recycled plastic and which gives wheelchair users access to the shore.
Carara National Park, Poas Volcano and Manuel Antonio offer universal walkways for disabled visitors.
Some tour companies also have adapted their gear to allow tourists with disabilities to experience zip lining.
Adaptive surfing is also an option.
“Sustainability is key in our tourism model and a sustainable destination must be accessible; I applaud that the Costa Rican tourism industry – hotels, restaurants, tour companies – have options for everyone to enjoy our country”, commented Gustavo Segura, Minister of Tourism.