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National Museum (Museo Nacional)

History museums, Museums
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Address: Calle 17, Avenidas Central y Segunda | Antiguo Cuartel Bella Vista, San Jose, Costa Rica
Phone Number: 257-221-4429
Website
Today
8:30 am - 4:30 am
Closed now
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Hours:
Sun 9:00 am - 4:30 am
Tue - Sat 8:30 am - 4:30 am
Description: This 19th-century building contains a well-organized exhibits on Costa...
This 19th-century building contains a well-organized exhibits on Costa Rica's history and culture.
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 357 reviews
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    Very good
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Most recent review
National museum worth the time

The exhibits gave a good overview of pre-columbian art and culture. There was also a small gold display (a teaser for the gold museum, perhaps?) Some of the other displays, like... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed February 18, 2015
FredGos
,
Round Pond, Maine
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357 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Date | Rating
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English first
Round Pond, Maine
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2015

The exhibits gave a good overview of pre-columbian art and culture. There was also a small gold display (a teaser for the gold museum, perhaps?) Some of the other displays, like the history of the museum building were probably of more interest to Costa Rican citizens than they were to us.

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San Jose, Costa Rica
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2015

I've been visiting the National Museum ever since I was in school. There's a very small section dedicated to pre-columbian times and the settling of Costa Rica, followed by a slightly larger overview of colonial times. You will see how people used to live in Costa Rica in the XIX century and take a tour of late XIX and early... More 

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San Jose, Costa Rica
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2015

The museum is a little out of the way in a somewhat seedy neighborhood but just jump into a cab and they'll drop you off at the front door. I have attended a number of shows there and never been disappointed. The shows also attracted a young hip crowd that could have been found attending a show in larger more... More 

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new york
Top Contributor
68 reviews 68 reviews
7 attraction reviews
67 helpful votes 67 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2015

Interesting setting inside former fort with walls pockmarked with bulletholes. Displays of beautiful pre Columbian gold. Interesting dioramas of rural life. Pleasant spot to learn about this country's history.

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Edmonton, Alberta
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
19 attraction reviews
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 15, 2015

The Museo Nacional is in a lovely series of old barracks and officers' residences. It offers a small collection of historical artifacts as well as some contemporary temporary exhibits, all well displayed. The highlight for me was in the butterfly atrium attached to the building. At the back, pinned to a small shelf were what seemed to be several old... More 

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Whiting Indiana
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
15 attraction reviews
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 13, 2015

We were lucky enough to be there on a free day. The museum is unique a former prison. It has a butterfly garden and many interesting exhibits.

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NYC
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
19 attraction reviews
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 12, 2015

Very good overview of history in this area and UNESCO mysterious 'balls' found in the southern part of Costa Rica. Also has a butterfly enclosure which is quite nice.

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victoria
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 6, 2015

First a bit of background. I used to work in a large provincial museum and we have visited many national museums. We almost didn't go to this one because the reviews were mediocre but it wasn't far from our hotel and only $10 so we decided to go anyway. Glad we did. This is not a large museum, this is... More 

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Glossop, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
229 reviews 229 reviews
150 attraction reviews
91 helpful votes 91 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2015

Good introduction to costa Rica and its history. Nice butterfly garden to walk through to get to the main museum building.

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Grapevine, Texas
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
16 attraction reviews
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2015

My husband and I thought this had lots of great information and can't beat the price of $8/p/p. The building is beautiful and the entrance was filled with a butterfly garden. We were able to see the Morphos (blue winged butterfly, seen mainly in the Osa Peninsula) butterfly up close. The pre-Columbian history was very well done and gave us... More 

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