Just the mention of Costa Rica is enough to conjure an image of the ultimate tropical destination, where lush jungles meet idyllic beaches, and red-eyed tree frogs hop through the canopy with towering volcanoes overhead.

While that might sound appealing, the reality is that…no, wait a minute, that is the reality.

Costa Rica is an unmistakable paradise, known as much for its natural beauty as for its charming residents and pura vida culture. Literally meaning “pure life,” the phrase is used both as a greeting and as a farewell, and can be understood broadly to express a positive mindset and outlook on life.

Of course, as is often the case with language, the phrase gets lost in translation. To really understand what pura vida means, one has to experience Costa Rica’s magic for themselves.

That’s just one of the many reasons why we’re taking our members on an IVY Wellness Retreat in Tropical Paradise (December 6 – 10) to celebrate and embrace the “Rich Coast’s” pure way of living, combining epic activities with expert-led wellness sessions. Joined by an in-house chef and personal fitness trainers, we’ll learn how to lead healthier lives while making lasting friendships and exploring one of the most beautiful places on earth. We’ll experience the best of what Costa Rica has to offer, from tours through its biodiverse forests to water sports on its world-class beaches. To give our readers a better sense of what this trip has to offer, we’ve included some highlights below.

Take It All In

There’s a lot to be gained from a quiet stroll through the woods, but that’s nothing compared to zip-lining through the canopy. For both veteran adventurers and staunch urbanites and everyone in between, this is an outstanding opportunity to get in touch with nature. Throughout our journey, we’ll be given plenty of opportunity to explore Costa Rica’s lush green areas, be it by horseback, hike, or ATV. You’ll definitely want to stop and smell the flowers — the country is known for its dazzling orchids.

Encounter Incredible Species

There’s no shortage of wildlife in Costa Rica. Toucans, capuchin and howler monkeys, turkeys, coatis and of course, the noble red-eyed tree frog are just some of the critters we might encounter on our journey. Whether hiking through Rincón de la Vieja Volcano National Park, or traversing the Guanacaste Forest on horseback (we’ll be doing both), we’re sure to encounter any number of Costa Rica’s diverse animal species. Keep your eyes peeled!

Revel in Wonder

Waterfalls, volcanoes, craters, and lagoons — this trip has it all. When we’re not blazing trails through the jungle or zip-lining through the trees, you best believe we’ll be taking advantage of Costa Rica’s serene waters and aquatic activities. The water sports are limitless, and we’ll be able to swim in crystal blue waters and tan on some of the world’s most coveted beaches. In addition, we’ll embark on a spiritual journey through the massive La Senda Labyrinth, which is surrounded by rich green forest and lined with towering cacti.

Rejuvenate & Restore

We’ll be accompanied by an expert yoga instructor and two celebrity trainers (who have worked with Marvel Studios) to guide us through restorative and rejuvenating exercise sessions. But this isn’t your ordinary trip to the gym. We’ll meditate under a waterfall, take a mud bath near hot springs, do yoga on the beach, and embark on unforgettable hikes. Whoever said that fun and fitness don’t mix hasn’t been to Costa Rica — or at least, not with us.

For more details on everything this incredible getaway has to offer, check out the full itinerary on IVY Travel. Hope to see you in paradise!