Emergencies, Parties and Celebrations

Emergencies, Parties and Celebrations


The national number for emergencies is 911, where you will be able to get in touch with doctors, ambulances, security services and the fire and rescue service.


Commercial Hours

Banks are open from Monday to Friday from 8:45 a.m to 3:45 p.m, and some are open on Saturdays from 9:00 a.m to 2:00 p.m. Government Offices are open to the public from 8:00 a.m to 4:00 p.m, during the weeks. Hours of business for commerce are from Monday to Saturday from 8:00 a.m to 6:00 p.m or 7:00 p.m.



During National Holidays all banks, public offices and many stores are closed. Buses are not in service during Maundy Thursday during the afternoon and all of Good Friday; few businesses open during the week. From Maundy Thursday to Resurrection Sunday, bars are closed as the sale of alcohol is prohibited.  You will need to reserve a room in hotels at least 15 to 30 days before your visit. The week between Christmas and New Year is a festive period of no official character with several areas independently celebrating Christmas. .


National Holidays & Festivals


New Year – 1st of January.

Festivales de Santa Cruz – Mid January; this locality of the Nicoya Peninsula celebrates its holidays with processions, rodeos, a bull ring, dancing and music.


Fiesta de los Diablitos – A changeable celebration, one of the few celebrations with aboriginal origins with traditional dances at the indigenous reserve of the Boruca, close to Curré.


The day of the Boyero – second Sunday of the month; celebrations in fiestas in San Antonio de Escazú with a beautiful parade of carts pulled by oxen and other celebrations.

The Day of San José – 19th; patron celebrations of the capital, it was previously a national holiday.

Easter Week – March to April; On Maundy Thursday & Friday all work is stopped.


The day of Juan Santamaría – 11th; this is to commemorate and honor the national hero who fought in the battle of Rivas against William Walker in 1865; the main celebrations (dances, parades and other festivities) take place in Alajuela, which was his home.


Day of Work – 1st; especially outstanding in the surroundings of Puerto Limón, with traditional dances.


San Pedro and San Pablo – 29th; old national festival, processions in each respective village.


Festival of the Virgen del Mar – mid month; is celebrated in Puntarenas  and Coco Beach with a boat parade, as well as other festivities that take place on land.

The Day of Guanacaste – 25th; the addition of Guanacaste, which previously belonged to Nicoya, is celebrated throughout the country especially in the villages of this province.


Virgen de los Ángeles – 2nd; the day of the patron of Costa Rica, is celebrated with an important procession from San José to Cartago.

Mothers Day: 15th; coincides with the assumption.


Independence Day – 14th; parades with children carrying lanterns and on the 15th there are parades throughout Costa Rica with the participation of schools and colleges. .


Day of Culture – 12th; the discovery of America is especially commemorated in Puerto Limón with festivities and carnivals.


Day of the Dead – 2nd; Celebrated with processions and family visits to the graves of loved ones.


Immaculate Conception- 8th; old national festival.

Christmas – 24th & 25th national holidays. .

Last week of December- 25th to the 31st days for celebration in San José, with bull rings, parades, horse parades and carnivals.