Central Pacific Coast
The Costa Rica Pacific Coast is easily accessible from the capital city of San José. Highway 27 (Ruta 27) allows you to get from the city to the beach in just over an hour. The Central Pacific area is characterized by small coastal villages and several well-developed resort areas. It’s mixed with palm plantations that stretch down the length of the coastline. Also, there are several beach towns that are popular with visitors to the area including Jaco Beach, Esterillos, Manuel Antonio and Dominical–to name a few. Visit the Pacific Coast for an incredible Costa Rica vacation and find great surfing, an abundance of rainforest wildlife and the classic pura vida vibe!
Families and couples flock from around the world to enjoy the beautiful beaches of Manuel Antonio, home to one of the most popular national parks in the country. Set up a canopy tour, ride ATV’s, go sports fishing or snorkeling and dolphin watching from a catamaran cruise. There is much to see and do in this beautiful area! Manuel Antonio is the most developed beach towns in the area. It offers incredible hotels and resorts, tons of activities. Shopping, restaurants, and nightlife will also help keep you busy during your stay.
The beach town of Jaco is one of the most popular surfing and nightlife destinations in Costa Rica and the Central Pacific. Only 1.5 hours from San Jose, it is easily accessible and full of adventure for the whole family. Relax on the beach, surf, go zip lining and watch for the countless Scarlet Macaws that fly around the area.
The Carara National Park is famous for being home to crocodiles, Scarlet Macaws, Toucans and Trogans. It is a great birding destination! Carara National Park is a transition zone between dry forest and rainforest so you get to see incredible birds from both types of forest.
Not to be confused with Playa Hermosa in Guanacaste, Hermosa beach is a fantastic surfing destination. Beginners should steer clear, however. The breaks are intense!
Nauyaca Waterfalls is one of the best ecotourism destinations in the Central Pacific. Ride on horseback to the beautiful waterfalls where you can swim in the natural pools.
The Central Pacific tours are great for everyone. You can find adrenaline-pumping adventure tours like zip lining or white water rafting or more relaxing birding and wildlife tours! You can also go on an ATV tour, visit a wildlife sanctuary or soar above the ocean on a parasailing tour.
Central Pacific Weather
The Central Pacific has some of the nicest weather in Costa Rica. From December-April you’ll find spring-like weather conditions all day, every day. From April-November there are usually rain showers in the last afternoon and early evening.
Central Pacific Nature
There’s no shortage of wildlife in the Central Pacific. It’s a popular place to photograph the famous Scarlet Macaws, who always fly in pairs. You’ll also see white face capuchin monkeys trying to steal your snacks, lazy sloths napping, crocodiles soaking up the sun under the Tarcoles bridge and lots of iguanas running around.
Central Pacific Culture
In the Central Pacific the culture is very pura vida and very tourist-y. Because there are so many stellar beaches and lush national parks there are always a great deal of foreigners and locals running around enjoying the incredible destinations. Luckily people are extremely friendly and laid back. Pura vida!
Map of Costa Rica’s Central Pacific