Best Places to Travel in 2016

Costa Rica
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The 50 biggest, buzziest destinations to visit this year include France’s new culture hub, a revived Hawaiian hideaway, and Mexico’s next great arts city.

32. Costa Rica

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Few places have the biological diversity of Costa Rica, with its cloud forests, wetlands, and tens of thousands of unique species of flora and fauna. Since the 2012 opening of the new terminal at Liberia’s International Airport, many low-key properties have opened, but it’s only more recently that the new wave of luxury development has come to fruition. Guanacaste’s beach community of Las Catalinas has opened their Beach Club, a gathering place for residents, villa renters, and visitors alike. It has two pools, a restaurant, a gym, and a beachfront terrace. A 20-room boutique hotel in also the works for later this year. In Papagayo Bay, the adults-only, all-inclusive Secrets Papagayo has joined the Four Seasons and Andaz. Next up: a Mandarin Oriental, a Paradisus, and a Wyndham. Farther south, the Pacífico Sur region is having a moment too. Auberge Resorts recently unveiled its takeover of Hacienda AltaGracia, in the remote Pérez Zeledón mountains. The brand’s first Central America property, which grants new access to a relatively unknown region of Costa Rica, has horse stables and ultralight planes for exploring the terrain. Best of all, a new airline, VivaCam, is planning low-cost flights from San José to the rest of Central America. —Lindsey Olander

Costa Rica

Best Places to Travel in 2016

32. Costa Rica

Few places have the biological diversity of Costa Rica, with its cloud forests, wetlands, and tens of thousands of unique species of flora and fauna. Since the 2012 opening of the new terminal at Liberia’s International Airport, many low-key properties have opened, but it’s only more recently that the new wave of luxury development has come to fruition. Guanacaste’s beach community of Las Catalinas has opened their Beach Club, a gathering place for residents, villa renters, and visitors alike. It has two pools, a restaurant, a gym, and a beachfront terrace. A 20-room boutique hotel in also the works for later this year. In Papagayo Bay, the adults-only, all-inclusive Secrets Papagayo has joined the Four Seasons and Andaz. Next up: a Mandarin Oriental, a Paradisus, and a Wyndham. Farther south, the Pacífico Sur region is having a moment too. Auberge Resorts recently unveiled its takeover of Hacienda AltaGracia, in the remote Pérez Zeledón mountains. The brand’s first Central America property, which grants new access to a relatively unknown region of Costa Rica, has horse stables and ultralight planes for exploring the terrain. Best of all, a new airline, VivaCam, is planning low-cost flights from San José to the rest of Central America. —Lindsey Olander

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