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Costa Rica Weather

Costa Rica 3D view  Costa Rica is located geographically only about eight degrees of north latitude of the equatorial line, thus Costa Rican climate is tropical all year round. However, because of the extraordinarily diverse amount of involved factors, the resulting country climate is a set of regional sub-climates. Therefore, the tropical weather of Costa Rica is greatly affected by its geography at the very local level. These factors include the totally heterogeneous relief (ranging from 0 to 3,431 m in only 51,100 km²) and the way as all its components (mountains, volcanoes, plains, valleys and plateaus) are distributed; the situation in respect to the two continental masses as American isthmus; the influence of the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans (sea winds and ocean current with their own temperatures, besides low pressure systems, tropical depressions, tropical storms and hurricanes) and the general atmospheric circulation.

(En Español: Clima de Costa Rica)

Current Weather of Costa Rica - Updated Satellite Image

Latest Image - GOES-13 1 km (only VISible, unavailable on night). Updates each ½h.
Based on Costa Rica satellite images thanks to RAMMB and CIRA programs (Colorado State University).
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* As the image time is Universal Time Coordinated or UTC (as before with GMT), subtract 6 h to get Costa Rica time.

Costa Rica
Location: 9°55'N 84°4'W (At the center of America, in the American Isthmus).
Subdivisions: Provinces: 7, Cantons: 81, Districts: 473
Area: 51,100 km² (19,730 sq mi) | Population: 4,563,539 (2010)

Main Climatic Subdivisions:
Rainfall Regions (Drainage Basins Systems):
     Pacific: Dry and rainy period well defined. The dry one is from December to April.
     Caribbean: Dry period is not well defined (less rainy months have 100-200 mm of rainfall.
Climatic Regions:
     Northern Pacific, Central Pacific, Southern Pacific, Central Region, Northern Zone, Northern Caribbean and Southern Caribbean

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The only Official Information and Current Weather Reports in Costa Rica are from Instituto Meteorológico Nacional (National Weather Institute)
Partly Cloudy & Rainy Conditions Suscribe to Costa Rica weather Atom feeds See its Current Weather and Forecast Report (In spanish, but is a graphically eloquent flash-animated map report):
Sunday 4 December 2016 ☼☁ | ☼☁ | ☽☁
Partly cloudy | Possible Isolated Rain
This Sunday in Costa Rica will continue the possibility of rain due to the position of the Intertropical Convergence Zone, which accentuates the entrance of humidity and consequently the production of downpours and storms. In the morning there will be rains of variable intensity in the Pacific coast, as well as in the North Zone, there will be partial cloudiness in the rest of the country. On the other hand, in the afternoon there will be rains and isolated downpours with storms in the regions of the Pacific and Central Valley, as well as in the mountains of the Caribbean and generally on the North Zone.

Early Morning:
Central Valley: Partly Cloudy.
North Pacific: Partly Cloudy.
Central Pacific: Partly Cloudy.
South Pacific: Partly Cloudy.
North Caribbean: Partly Cloudy.
South Caribbean: Partly Cloudy.
North Zone: Cloudy. Partly Cloudy.

Morning:
Central Valley: Partly Cloudy.
North Pacific: Partly Cloudy.
Central Pacific: Partly Cloudy.
South Pacific: Partly Cloudy.
North Caribbean: Partly Cloudy.
South Caribbean: Partly Cloudy.
North Zone: Partly Cloudy.

Afternoon:
Central Valley: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
North Pacific: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
Central Pacific: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
South Pacific: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
North Caribbean: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
South Caribbean: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
North Zone: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.

Night:
Central Valley: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
North Pacific: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
Central Pacific: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
South Pacific: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
North Caribbean: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
South Caribbean: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
North Zone: Partly Cloudy to Cloudy. Possible isolated rain.
Temperatures in Costa Rica

Temperatures (Max/Min ºC):
San José 26.0º/17.0º | Alajuela 27.0º/18.0º | Cartago 25º/14.0º | Heredia 27.0º/17.0º | Puntarenas 32º/22º | Liberia 32º/20º | Nicoya 31º/21º | Bagaces 33º/22º | Quepos 30º/22º | Parrita 30º/23º | Golfito 31º/23º | Isla del Coco 32º/18º | San Isidro de El General 26º/18º | Guápiles 32º/22º | Tortuguero 33º/22º | Limón 30º/22º | Sixaola 31º/21º | Ciudad Quesada 26º/18º | Upala 30º/23º | Sarapiquí 32º/20º

Source: Gabriela Chinchilla (Meteorologist) - Instituto Meteorológico Nacional (IMN)


Costa Rica Weekly Weather Forecast (21 - 27 November 2016)

Instituto Meteorológico Nacional (IMN)

Suscribe to Costa Rica weather Atom feed, weekly forecast included

Partly cloudy to Cloudy | Wind | Rain | Low Temperatures
 This week features the Cold Front No. 5 and Tropical Cyclone (No. 16) on the southern Caribbean Sea, which already has a category of Tropical Storm, and according to the official forecasts of the National Hurricane Center in Miami (NHC), it could reach the category of Hurricane on Wednesday, between dawn and the early hours of the morning.

For this reason it is estimated that the unstable conditions persist in the country during the week, which will be generating a variable scenario in the rainfall regime in all the regions of the national territory. In this way, rainfall of variable intensity is estimated with strong and moderate winds, as well as low temperatures in the highlands of the country; In addition in the Caribbean, the North Zone and the South Pacific will persist a pattern of persistent rainfall at least until Thursday.

Source: Instituto Meteorológico Nacional (IMN) - (Costa Rica National Weather Institute)


Costa Rica Weather in the month of December 2016

Monthly Weather Characterization from IMN

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 December is characterized by prevailing trade winds, as well as a reduction of rainfall in the Guanacaste and Central Valley areas. The dry season is first established in the North Pacific (giving rise to the Tropical Dry Forest) and then in the Central Region. In the Caribbean, rainfall increases on the coast, but decreases in the mountains.

Source: Instituto Meteorológico Nacional (IMN) - (Costa Rica National Weather Institute)


Current Oceanic Influence 4 December)

From USA National Hurricane Center Advisories

4 December 2016, 03:45 UTC
No Significant Climatic Disturbances
 The oceanic surroundings of Costa Rica remain with no significant climatic disturbances in this moment.

There are not significant climatic disturbances at this time.
Latest Satellite photograph of Central America (4 December 2016).
NOAA - National Weather Service

There are not significant climatic disturbances.
Latest Satellite animation of Central America and oceanic surroundings (4 December 2016).
NOAA - National Weather Service
Sources: NASA / USA National Hurricane Center - NOAA / National Weather Service


Costa Rica Weather, General Description

 The seasons of Costa Rica climate are defined by the amount of rain that falls during a particular period of time. The year can be easily divided into two main periods or seasons, named by the local residents as "Verano", summer and "Invierno", winter. The "Verano" season is from December to April, and is the time of the year when there are more blue skies and few rains. The "Invierno" is the rainy period, from May to November, and during this time, in most locations, it rains constantly; with sunny mornings, sometimes cool, sometimes sweltering, and the rain coming during the first hours of afternoon.

The maximum rain quantity received is at the Northeastern lowlands, the Caribbean, near the Orosi Valley, Arenal and Monteverde areas, Talamanca Range, Osa Peninsula and Golfito (Southern Pacific) (annual rainfall of over 5,000 mm). Humidity is also higher on the Caribbean side than on the Pacific. The mean annual temperature on the coastal lowlands is around 80 °F (27 °C), 69 °F (21 °C) in the main populated areas of the Central Cordillera, and below 50 °F (10 °C) on the summits of the highest mountains. In the highest areas of Irazú Volcano (3,431 m) and Chirripó (3,810 m), temperatures sometimes can drop below 0 ºC.

The driest season of Costa Rica in most places is from December to April, while the rainy season is from May to November. On the Caribbean coast, however, December is by far the more wet month. The highlands areas are always cooler. The lowest elevation level in the country is the Pacific Ocean at sea level, the highest point is Cerro Chirripó, a somewhen glaciated mountain with an elevation of 3,810 m (part of Chirripó National Park). Even on a clear day, it is possible to see both the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean from the top.

Notes & References:
1
- The standard air pressure at sea level in millibars is 1013.25 mba, which is the value of 1 atmosphere, or 1013.25 hPa in IS units (1 mba = 1 hPa).
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