Skip to primary navigation Skip to content Skip to footer
Back to Blog

Tips for Riding an ATV for the First Time in Costa Rica


Are you looking to ride an ATV in Costa Rica? We have some suggestions for you to consider before hitting the trails. The most important thing in riding ATVs is that safety always comes first. Make sure you and everyone you ride with stays safe out on the trails. Here are some helpful tips below:

1. Drive the proper vehicle

This may sound like a no-brainer, but there is actually a lot that goes in to finding the perfect ATV to fit your needs. Initially, there is the size of the ATV. While most adult ATVs should fit many adult body types, you need to try to find an ATV that allows your knees to be bent at ninety degrees and does not require you to stretch to reach the brakes.

You should be able to comfortably put your second knuckle on the brake mechanism. The same rule applies to young riders. There are a lot of youth ATVs out there, so make sure that certain ATVs are the appropriate fit for their rider.

You should keep in mind that you should never allow more riders on an ATV than it was designed for. If you think you will want to give passengers a ride, you need to plan accordingly and find an ATV made for that.

Beyond the actual dimensions of the ATV, you’ll need to think about what size engine you are looking for. ATVs with 500cc or greater with larger displacement engines pack more punch and will go faster. But it’s important to consider that they will also be more difficult to control and steer compared to other lower cc machines.

2. Get the safest gear

Having the right safety gear is just as important as having the right ATV. Injuries will be prevented if the rider wears the proper safety gear.

You should never go riding without a helmet. The safest helmets are DOT and SNELL certified. A bike helmet is not safe enough. When selecting a helmet, be sure to find one that fits you properly.

There should be no gaps between the head and helmet padding. This includes direct contact with your cheeks. The helmet should be snug enough to ensure no movement in the helmet’s fit.

Grab the helmet securely with two hands and try to rotate the helmet side-to-side and back-and-forth. It might be uncomfortable, but if the helmet has significant movement or even comes close to coming off, it is definitely too large.

Remember that helmets should always be replaced if they have been in a crash. The same goes for goggles, which are another important item for protecting your eyes and brain.

There is more to safety than just a helmet. You should make sure to wear proper gear from head-to-toe including boots, gloves and full-length pants. This makes a big difference when it comes to staying protected on your ATV.

3. Plan your ATV activity in advance

When you plan an ATV trip you should know the location you are going to and what to expect when you get there. This is even more true for someone who plans to ride for the first time.

Always let someone know where you are going and when you will be back. You need to always have a plan in place in case something goes wrong.

Learning the Jaco terrain and how to handle it is also very important. If you are not sure how to climb hills, avoid them or ask Ocean Ranch Park for assistance. Our ATV tours are perfect for beginning riders, so do not overextend yourself or your fellow riders.

If you are just starting out, you should stick to simple trails and avoid unfamiliar terrain, such as crossing a river or stream for instance.

Do you have a question about our ATV Tours? Click here to contact Ocean Ranch Park today!