Distance from San José

202.8 Km, 126.02 Miles / 3 hours drive

Great for:

Nature lovers; bird watchers; photographers; culture seekers; travelers with purpose.

Costa Rica’s South Caribbean region is a rather unique destination. It is as famous for its crystalline seas and dense vegetation as it for its distinctive culture and delicious cuisine.

The vegetation in this part of the country is abundant and humid, making it the ideal habitat for a great diversity of fauna. Nonetheless, the wildlife is not found only in the rainforest; the oceans here are home to a staggering number of animals, as is the air. Divers and birdwatchers alike will have the time of their lives as will rainforest enthusiasts.

  • In terms of weather, the trade winds blowing off the Caribbean spawn some rather intense rains; these then create some of the densest rainforests in Costa Rica.
  • One of the treasures of the South Caribbean is Cahuita National Park.
  • Just off the shore of this park you can find Costa Rica’s largest coral reef. Scuba diving and snorkelling are superb here.
  • Another natural attraction is the Gandoca-Manzanillo Wildlife Reserve, an important nesting site for the leatherback turtle. The flora and fauna of the reserve is abundant; taking a walk down a nature trail into the jungle is highly recommended.
  • Puerto Viejo is the most popular urban centre of the region and is also one of the best surf spots in Costa Rica. It is located approximately 218kms/135miles from San José (around a 3 hour drive). A relatively small coastal hamlet, it is popular among the alternative crowd. Here you will find a diverse range of accommodation as well as restaurants, bars, and clubs.

    Among the many other activities available, you can enjoy surfing, horseback riding, kayaking, nature walks, and much more.

Hot and humid.

Sunny Months: March, April and September and October.

Destinations on the Caribbean Coast