Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica
Manuel Antonio is a favorite for honeymoon, fishing, nature walks, wildlife tours and a wide range of watersports to fill a week's vacation in Costa Rica. Activities in the area are centered around nature and the outdoor; a guided or self-guided walk through the park to witness the incredible biodiversity in flora and fauna; kayaking through mangrove forests to watch birds and reptiles in their natural habitat; horseback riding from beaches into the jungle and to waterfalls; white-water rafting; canyon tours; backcountry ATV rides; sunset cruises; canopy tours that take you on walks over bridges and platforms on tree-top levels.
Manuel Antonio National Park has some of the best beaches in Costa Rica. For swimming, snorkeling and sunbathing, three scenic beaches beckon; you can trek from Playa Espadilla to Manuel Antonio Beach to Playa Escondido, all are exquisitely beautiful with pristine turquoise waters fringed by white sand and lush tropical vegetation.
Manuel Antonio National Park is easy to get to from San Jose airport. The 177-km drive from San Jose to Manuel Antonio takes about 2.5 hours. Head for the gateway town, Quepos, which appears side by side with Manuel Antonio on the Costa Rica map, separated by only 6 kilometers. This stretch of road leading to the park is lined by countless restaurants, hotels, shops and tour offices, backed by dense tropical rainforests on both sides of the road, with beautiful glimpses of the blue Pacific all the way.
Manual Antonio accommodation includes luxury villas and condos, hostels, ecolodges and boutique hotels and resorts. The hotels in Manuel Antonio are known to have a high volume of repeat visits from guests who return year after year, so early bookings are advised. Most Manuel Antonio rentals offer gorgeous ocean view and great privacy due to the lush surround, perfect for romantic getaways and relaxation. The villas in Manuel Antonio tend to fall into the luxury category, but fortunately in nearby Manuel Antonio Quepos there are more affordable hotels and rentals.
No other resorts in Costa Rica encapsulate so much of the best of the country in so tiny an area as Manuel Antonio. The awe-inspiring natural beauty, biodiversity, idyllic beaches, emerald jungles and breathtaking sunsets will remain in your memory long after the vacation.