Central Pacific Beaches
Due to their close proximity to San Jose, the beaches in this area, starting from the southern tip of Puntarenas to north of Dominical, are the most visited beaches in Costa Rica.
Jaco, Quepos and Manuel Antonio are also known for their adventure tours (surfing, sport fishing, snorkeling,diving, horseback riding and wildlife viewing) and plethora of hotels and restaurants.
Central Pacific Beaches
(Puntarenas to north of Dominical)
- Puntarenas - Located on a small peninsula bordered buy the Gulf of Nicoya on one side and an estuary on the other, two of its beaches are recipients of the ecological blue flag. Even so, this really is not a "beachy" destination. You can catch a ferry to the southern Nicoya Peninsula beach towns from here and enjoy a stroll along the beach-side boardwalk with lots of restaurants and open cafes along the waterfront. Tortuga Island is nearby too.
Playa Dona Ana - With many picnic areas and almond trees, this beach is mainly popular with the locals since it's the first beach south of Puntarenas and close to San Jose.
- Punta Leona - This beach is part of a wildlife refuge protecting endangered birds and mammals. The popular and beautiful Punta Leona resort fronts this white sanded beach. Contact us for a reservation.
Playa Herradura - The calm, horseshoe-shaped, gray sanded beach is home to the Los Suenos Marina with a full-service port for chartering deep sea fishing boats and snorkeling / diving tours to nearby islands. Contact us for your charter boat.
Playa Jaco - This is the most developed beach town closest to San Jose. Jaco is popular for its year-round surf, excellent restaurants, top-notch hotels, all sort of adventure tours and a kickin' nightlife. Contact us now for your kickin' experience.
Playa Hermosa - A few minutes further south from Jaco is Playa Hermosa. The contrast between the two beaches is drastic. You go from high-rise developments to pure tranquility. This is a super popular spot for (experienced) surfers, where year-round consistent waves and annual international surf contests are held. Playa Hermosa is also part of the the Playa Hermosa Wildlife Refuge which protects nesting Olive Ridley sea turtles between the months of July and December.
Playa Esterillos - The deserted beaches of Playas Esterillos (Esterillos Este, Centro and Oeste) are fringed with palms and tropical forest. Surfers enjoy the strong beach breaks of Esterillos Centro and Este. Oeste, also with a great swell for riders, additionally has calm tidal pools for swimmers to lounge out in. Even though it's visited less than other nearby beaches, the options for lodging and good eats are all here, so Contact us for your reservation.
- Playa Bejuco -
This is one of the few untouched "named" beaches on this side of the country. Walk for miles and miles on beautiful sanded beaches. Chances are the riptides will keep the swimmers at bay, but the beach breaks are inviting for surfers. There is a minimal choice for hotels and restaurants, but we can arrange one for you.
Quepos - This beach is really not one for lounging in the sun as there is not much sanded area. It is most popular for inshore and offshore world class sport fishing. There is a river mouth break that can be good when the surf gets big. We are happy to help you book a fishing adventure.
- Manuel Antonio - The white-sanded, pristine beaches inside Manuel Antonio National Park are perfect for getting a full nature experience: monkeys swinging over your head as you eat lunch, iguanas climbing the palms bordering the beaches and the sound of the blue water lapping the shore. Keep your eyes peeled for homeless hermit crabs - those who are in need of a shell!
- Playa Matapalo - This is the ultimate off-the-beaten path surf spot. With two river mouth breaks and consistent waves, most surfers make this a stop over before heading south to Dominical.
- Playa Baru - Part of the Hacienda Baru Wildlife Refuge, this two mile stretch of beach is not suitable for swimming due to strong currents. It is a beautiful beach for morning or late afternoon strolls, before or after the heat of the day.
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