Even though Halloween originated with the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain around 2000 years ago, this tradition gains more and more followers around the world every year. And this country is not an exception. Celebrate Halloween in Costa Rica is not the same as it is in the US or Canada, but it’s possible.

The million-dollar question is: Do people Celebrate Halloween in Costa Rica?

It’s not a custom between old grown-ups or elders, and unfortunately, you are not going to find neighborhoods covered in Halloween decorations. However, middle-aged adults and youth generations are more willing to adopt this tradition and add it to their calendars. 

Every year it is more frequent to see people going to work wearing their costumes to participate in the office’s contest, and the company’s Halloween parties schedule in different discos and nightclubs.

On the other hand, since 1996, the Government declared Oct 31st as the “Dia de la Mascarada Costarricense”; as an effort to keep away the foreign tradition and to give to this day a Tico flavor. 

Does it work? In my opinion, it did not, and there are two reasons why this failed. 

  1. Costa Rican’s have been making these craft masks to use them in their traditional fairs, birthday parties, married parties, etc. However, there were no intended; to be part of a tradition and a specific global Holliday.
  2. The mask is that, just a mask. To celebrate Halloween in Costa Rica, you want to wear a full outfit or costume. The more fashionable, scary, and exciting, the better, and this will not be the case if you wear Costa Rican masks. That; will be the main reason why youth people don’t adopt this tradition.

Can you get costumes to celebrate Halloween in Costa Rica?

The answer to this is yes. You may find costumes at Walmart, but those are just regular ones. There are some stores where you can either rent or buy Halloween costumes. Nonetheless; to find these small retail stores is hard. Usually, they are just a few costume stores across the country, and they are, in fact, small stores.

Also, keep in mind that costumes are accessible during October; before or after that, it will be harder to get them. A great workaround for this is to order online. You may get Halloween costumes from the States if you purchase online, and usually, the delivery time frame is about two weeks.

Are there any activities for children to Celebrate Halloween in Costa Rica?

Trick or Treat here is a lot different. Since the Holiday has not been taken officially as a national celebration, you can’t walk around the block of your neighborhood expecting to get some delicious candy. But not everything is lost; some shopping Malls; and restaurants organized activities for families and kids. 

There are some Private Residential Areas and Condos in which people also organized activities for families and children. Once again, keep it in mind these activities are small and limited in time; and candy. Year by year, you get to see more activities. 

For you to avoid losing at least one of them, track shopping malls: Facebook pages and Instagram profiles to stay in the loop regarding how to celebrate Halloween with them.

Is there any big party night to celebrate Halloween in Costa Rica?

It depends on what your definition of “Big Party” is. But don’t get me wrong; there are nightclubs with a costume contest, open bar, live DJs, and friendly people pursuing to spend a great night.

Entry fees and beer or cocktails’ prizes may vary from one place to the other. And if you want to go to one of those on-demand new hot shinny places, my recommendation is to check if you have to buy your ticket; in advance. It is one of those nights where you can see people coming out of discotheques the next day at 5 am or 6 am. 

Essentials to Celebrate Halloween in Costa Rica, can you get them?

After narrowing the list to the minimum, I am glad to let you know that you may find the essentials to have a great and traditional Halloween Holliday.

Here you have some tips:

  • Halloween Decoration – you may get it at Walmart.
  • Carve Pumpkins – you may get them at Walmart or Automercado in their natural state; you have to carve them.
  • Halloween Cookies – you may get all ingredients at any supermarket.
  • Candy – you may get it at any supermarket; even Halloween mix candy bags are nowadays available.
  • Pumpkin Pie – Not available in all bakeries, but it’s not hard to find.
  • Apples – you may get them at any supermarket.

Is it better to celebrate Halloween in Costa Rica than in the US or Canada?

In conclusion, depending on your staying in Costa Rica, there are two scenarios. 

If you are taking a long-term vacation here; you may prepare yourself and celebrate with your mates or family. At the very least, Costa Rica offers all the essentials to have a decent and traditional celebration on October: 31st.

On the other hand, if you are here only for a few days with October: 31st, between them, depending on where you are staying in, you will be able or not to celebrate. Truth be told: it depends on your age, and if you like to party at nightclubs or not.

Considering the two cases described, you could not compare the US to Celebrate Halloween in Costa Rica. The US and Canada are way ahead on this Holliday, and in Costa Rica, you could only experience a small and basic celebration.

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