Costa Rica Promotes Certification of Astronomical Destinations to Seduce Travelers Who Love Stars

    The country's potential in astrotourism would benefit rural areas that are preferred by this tourism niche

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    The geographical position close to the equator and the dark skies of the country make Costa Rica a destination with a high potential to seduce lovers of the stars and promote a new tourist offer for various regions of the country.

    And it is that astronomical tourism has the special characteristic that visitors seek remote places, fleeing from artificial lights, positioning rural communities as a magnet for experts from the skies.

    Special niche

    People who take care of the environment, travel in small groups, like to go to rural areas, medium-high budget, with specialized equipment, who spend many days traveling and with characteristics similar to a bird watcher, this is the profile defined for the visitor who loves the night skies.

    The growth of Costa Rica in this tourist niche has improved and its potential to increase the arrival of foreigners is very important, indicated Alejandra León, director of Cientec.

    The potential of the sky

    “We have not realized the potential of the sky, we were not seeing it from the perspective of astronomy, now there is an opportunity to take advantage of that sky, precisely for the communities that live in rural areas, who can take advantage of that sky, and promote the coming of tourists, both foreign and national”, said León.

    For this reason, Cientec and the Spanish Starlight Foundation established an alliance to strengthen astronomical tourism in Costa Rica, through the certification of appropriate places for this activity.

    Starlight is a specialist in spreading the love of astronomy and generating economy around the contemplation of the stars, so the agreement opens a window for the training of communities and tourist guides.

    “Part of that we do by partnering with foundations like Starlight, which has a declaration of dark skies or a commitment to sky conservation. It will help us in the training of astrotourism in site certification, as suitable sites and that can put us on the map worldwide to attract more people, and that is an important part of the alliance”, added León.

    Likewise, they hope that in the medium and long term some artificial lighting policies can be implemented in rural areas, which favor appropriate spaces for observing the night sky.

    Adequate observation

    When being in the middle of the dark for the adequate observation of the sky, choosing safe places is of vital importance and thus avoiding possible assaults; In addition, selecting dark places and away from artificial lights is another of the considerations that experts recommend.

    Good binoculars and an astronomical app are enough for visitors to discover nebulae, clusters and galaxies in the dark sky, while those who want to enjoy a deeper sky can do so through their telescopes.

    A viable option

    One of the intentions of the authorities of the Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT) is that tourists who arrive in the country stay more days in national territory and agro-tourism represents a viable option for that goal, according to William Rodríguez, Minister of Tourism.

    “This falls like a glove in the purpose of ICT, which will undoubtedly give us success in the future to increase the sources of income from tourism. The type of tourist that goes to see the stars are people who fit perfectly into our model or tourist prospect that we try to attract and Costa Rica has exceptional places to see space,” Rodríguez said.

    Protected Areas and rural localities have been classified within categories one and two with the most transparent skies; Among them, the Corcovado and Santa Rosa National Parks stand out, as well as Palo Verde and other destinations in Guanacaste and the Costa Rican Caribbean.

    Resonance Costa Rica
    At Resonance, we aspire to live in harmony with the natural world as a reflection of our gratitude for life. Visit and subscribe at Resonance Costa Rica Youtube Channel
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