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The rich coast

Boundless rainforests, miles of palm-fringed coastline and welcoming locals who embrace the simple life – it's all there to be discovered in the unfettered natural splendour of Costa Rica
The sandy shores of Manuel Antonio beach lead into the dense rainforest that covers much of Costa Rica

If the best things come in small packages, this could explain why Costa Rica (which translates as ‘Rich Coast’) has so many surprises within its modest parameters. Flanked by the Caribbean Sea and the South Pacific, it has a population of just 4.5 million people and covers only 0.1 per cent of the world’s landmass, yet it proudly showcases around five per cent of the world’s biodiversity – a huge figure. Tis is because approximately a quarter of its terrain is environmentally protected, earning it the accolade of eco- and adventure-tourism capital of the Americas.

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The July 2016 issue of Lonely Planet Traveller UK.