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The Daily. Monday, January 20th, 2020.

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Weather in Costa Rica, Dry Season, Rainy Season, Las Pintas

In this Daily: The Weather in Costa Rica Throughout the Year According to Las Pintas

The beginning of this year also brought the beginning of Las Pintas, a Costa Rican folk belief that indicates that the weather on the first days of the year “paint” the weather of the rest of the year. Las Pintas emerged out of a desire to predict the weather in early agrarian society, and as the old belief goes, tracking subtle variations in the weather throughout the first 19 days of January provides some insight into monthly weather throughout the year. 

Tracking Las Pintas is an exercise in attention to detail. Costa Rican weather tends to follow a steady arc throughout the year, but small adjustments to January’s generally consistent weather are supposed to imply similar twists within the year’s weather. 

Based off of the weather for the past 19 days, and the baseline of expected Costa Rican weather, here’s what to expect for town’s weather in 2020 according to Las Pintas.

Weather in Costa Rica, Dry Season, Rainy Season, Las Pintas

Las Pintas is an old folk belief about predicting the weather in Costa Rica and can be a fun way to look ahead at the year

The Weather in Guanacaste, Costa Rica According to Historical Data

From the beginning of the year, the months in Guanacaste follow a relatively standard pattern. January and February are warm, sunny, and breezy, with drier air and generally little-to-no rain. March and April are very similar, only more so. May brings the first intermittent rains, the fading of the strong winds from the north, and a rapid shift from gold to green on the mountains. 

Weather in Costa Rica, Dry Season, Rainy Season, Las Pintas

The trails during the changing of the seasons

June, July, and August bring cooler days, still full of sun, punctuated by brief showers throughout the month, as the mountains grow lusher, more full, and more green, accompanied by the growth of seasonal streams and rivers. 

September and October bring heavier and more frequent rains, with cooler temperatures and days still mostly sunny. Then, November brings a transition back to the dry season. Showers fall off by December, ushering in the steady breezes and days of constant sun. 

Weather in Costa Rica, Dry Season, Rainy Season, Las Pintas

Historical data on temperature, rainfall, and humidity taken from Costa Rica’s Weather service for Guanacaste, Costa Rica

What Las Pintas Would Indicate About This Year

For a full overview of the tracking of Las Pintas, you can see the article here. In essence, the various subtleties of the weather on each of the first 12 days of the year represent variations on the 12 months of the year, where notable heat, wind, and clouds can all indicate factors about the weather. The same is followed for the next six days, where morning and evening both represent a different month, and then on January 19th each of the twelve hours between dawn and dusk represents a month. 

Based on the tracking of Las Pintas this month, here would be what to expect from the rest of this year. 


Based on Las Pintas, January would be expected to be warm, but not exceptionally so, with a notably strong and steady wind throughout the month. An accurate assessment based on how this month’s weather so far.


Las Pintas predicts cool mornings and overall a milder month than usual, with a brief falling off of the wind compared to January.


According to Las Pintas, the milder year-over-year conditions (sun, heat, wind) of February should continue into the first half of the month, with a beautiful set of spring break conditions followed by both heat and wind peaking leading into April.


Las Pintas would indicate strong winds and hotter weather throughout, with dry season ending in stronger fashion than in most years.


Tracking of Las Pintas point for April’s dry season to have a longer tail than usual, falling off towards the end of the month into the usually expected rains and milder temperatures as the greenery returns.


A warmer and sunnier June than in most years according to Las Pintas, with fewer of the summer showers that usually characterize the month.


July presents a contrast to June’s slightly drier month with scattered showers throughout, at least as predicted by Las Pintas. Nothing on the scale of a usual September or October, but predicted to be a touch rainier than usual.


Las Pintas puts August right in the classic green season weather. Alternating warm and sunny days cooled by the brief afternoon aguaceros.


Las Pintas predicts the rainiest part of the year will hold off until the end of this month, with August’s green season rhythm continuing into much of September as well.


Quite a bit of rain after a September that Las Pintas would indicate was a touch sunnier. Moderate to mild temperatures, with frequent rain showers that should keep the creeks and streams flowing.


A strong tail to October’s rainy season into the first week of November, followed by a rapid change into the dry season. Las Pintas predicts that the sun arrives late in the month and doesn’t look back.


Strong winds for December, much like the first part of January, and cooler temperatures to accompany them. If Las Pintas holds true, a breezy and beautiful month to wind down the year.

Weather in Costa Rica, Dry Season, Rainy Season, Las Pintas

Las Catalinas in December, as the seasons change from green season to dry season

The Year Ahead

An interesting set of predictions from Las Pintas, and we’ll keep an eye on them over the course of the year to see how accurate they are. 

However, the one thing to be sure of is the beautiful, welcoming weather in Costa Rica throughout the year. Dry season, green season, and the months as they blend together each have their own character, uniquely suited to time spent in the outdoors, and with changes in nature as well. 

Whichever month of the year you choose to visit, hope to welcome you to town soon.

Visit Las Catalinas in 2020

Las Catalinas

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