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Juan Santamaria Historical Cultural Museum

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: Avenida 1, Calle Central y 2, Alajuela 4050, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
+506 2441 4775

Juan Santamaria Cultural Historical Museum is the national institution to...

Juan Santamaria Cultural Historical Museum is the national institution to acquire, preserve, preserve, research and disseminate cultural heritage, related to the National Campaign and the province of Alajuela. It is located in the Old Headquarer and Old Alajuela's City Jail. The Museum have historial and art exhibitions, cafe, bookstore, library and an auditorium where cultural activities take place.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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  • 14
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    Very good
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Interesting History

Nice little museum about Costa Rican struggle for independence. Offers a different perspective on the United States' Manifest Destiny. Staff was friendly and courteous.

Reviewed 6 days ago
Strong, Maine
via mobile
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136 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 47: English reviews
Strong, Maine
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviewed 6 days ago NEW via mobile

Nice little museum about Costa Rican struggle for independence. Offers a different perspective on the United States' Manifest Destiny. Staff was friendly and courteous.

Thank run262016
La Pine, Oregon
Level Contributor
123 reviews
42 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 March 2017 via mobile

Good overview of Costa Rica history from founding of the country. Has some English translations of exhibitions.

Thank richard s
Level Contributor
22 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 March 2017 via mobile

Had some time to kill so we stopped by for a visit. It's free, so why not? The guards were friendly and pointed us in the right direction. The museum tells the story of William Walker, a US national that headed to Central America to basically conquer and enslave the local population. Yeah, a real charmer.. Luckily for everyone, he... More 

Thank Moshe K
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
239 reviews
126 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 180 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 January 2017

Can’t beat free admission and free use of lockers to stash small bags or backpacks! This museum showcases the history of the area through photos, artifacts, displays and written descriptions, some of which are printed in English. They are clearly proud of having successfully defended themselves against an invasion of American filibusters led by William Walker (who already controlled parts... More 

Thank Don_G_Wright
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviewed 8 January 2017

When I travel I want to learn about the history and the culture, and for sure this place is perfect for both purposes.

Thank Layla M
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
63 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 December 2016 via mobile

We were in Alajuela as an interim stop on way to San Jose and decided to visit this museum right on the central square. Admission is totally free and you are given the key for self-locking storage units to put large bags and backpacks in. The ground floor left-hand side of salas are devoted to showing chronologically the Independence movement... More 

Thank Ckrenzel
Ubud, Indonesia
Level Contributor
60 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 November 2016 via mobile

This Museum was undergoing remodeling and there was very little to see. I also almost got clobbered by a rope a guy dropped down out of an attic from a ladder. I was glad it was free. I do not recommend whatsoever.

1 Thank commcomm2
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 18 October 2016

The historical cultural museum is an interesting way to introduce yourself to Costa Rica. It provides bilingual synopsis of Costa Rican history through a few different rooms. The museum isn't magnificent or overwhelming but its a good way to spend an afternoon out of the sun if you are looking to escape the heat in the summer.

Thank Eilish Z
Heredia, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
48 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 August 2016 via mobile

I really learned a lot here- not just about Juan Santamaria but they provide an in depth history of the context of the battle at Rivas. Who knew that a US lawyer and his "filibusters" could have such an impact on Central American history. walker wanted to turn the region into a slave colony- no wonder they are so proud... More 

1 Thank jannelupita
Atenas, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
123 reviews
61 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 August 2016

This old fort also used for other government purposes is now a great history museum. The building is interesting for architectural fans and the inside displays full of history details.

Thank Charlie D

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Miami Beach, Florida

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Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?