The beaches and jungles of Manuel Antonio will take your breath away. Just be careful that its exotic wildlife and resident monkeys don’t steal your heart! Manuel Antonio is truly postcard perfect.

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Playa Manuel Antonio is one of three stunning beaches on this idyllic coastline. Playa Espadilla, the main public beach, has decent waves for surfing at its northern end and smaller waves ideal for swimming and body surfing to the south. Playa Biesanz, an ideal spot for snorkeling at certain times of the year, is the northernmost beach, while the heavenly Manuel Antonio Beach lies within the national park.

Three main trails wind their way through Manuel Antonio National Park, offering unique opportunities for bird watching and viewing the rainforest wildlife. Although none of these trails are strenuous or menacing, a guide is recommended for those who seek detailed knowledge about the rainforest and the creatures that live there. No more than 600 visitors are allowed inside the park per day, so if you visit during peak season starting in December, make sure to arrive early in the morning.

The Manuel Antonio village center is a tiny collection of a few small shops, restaurants, bars and a multitude of street vendors selling souvenirs.

The hill that connects Manuel Antonio with the port city of Quepos is lined with the area’s finest hotels, spas, restaurants and bars with stunning views of the ocean below. Sunset cocktails here are a great way to end a sun-filled day at the national park.

Budget accommodations are abundant in Quepos, where you can also find great restaurants specializing in typical food and international cuisine, and a lively bar scene on weekends. 

Planning a vacation to Manuel Antonio

When planning a vacation to Manuel Antonio, we recommend a 3 - 5 day stay in the Manuel Antonio area. There is plenty to keep you busy or gorgeous beaches for relaxation.  The only reason that we do not recommend a longer stay is due to the fact that there is so much to do and see in Costa Rica, that a stay longer than 5 days would be taking away from your overall experience.

The vast majority of hotels in Manuel Antonio are located along the hillside.  There are only a couple hotels on the beach.  Some of our favorite mid-range hotels include La Vela Boutique Hotel, The Falls Resort, San Bada Hotel, and Shana by the Beach Hotel.  Our favorite luxury hotels include Los Altos Resort, Arenas del Mar Resort, Parador Resort, Gaia Hotel and Oceans Two Resort.  If you are on a budget, we would recommend Cabinas Espadilla, Costa Verde, or Hotel Plaza Yara.

Arenas del Mar Beach and Nature Resort

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The Best Hotels in Manuel Antonio

Manuel Antonio offers a range of accommodations to suit different preferences and budgets. Here are some of the best hotels in Manuel Antonio, categorized by luxury, upper midrange, and midrange options:


  • Arenas Del Mar Beach and Nature Resort: This eco-luxury resort is nestled within the rainforest and offers stunning ocean views. Guests can enjoy direct access to two beautiful beaches, fine dining, and luxurious amenities.

  • The Tulemar Resort: Known for its exclusive private bungalows and villas, Tulemar Resort offers a secluded and upscale experience. The property is set on a lush hillside with abundant wildlife and access to its own beach.

  • Los Altos Resort: Perched on a hilltop, Los Altos Resort provides spacious and elegant suites with panoramic ocean views. The resort boasts a lovely infinity pool, gourmet dining, and a tranquil atmosphere.

  • Hotel Parador Resort and Spa: This resort is set on a lush tropical hillside and offers a variety of luxurious rooms and suites. It features multiple restaurants, a spa, and walking trails through its expansive gardens.

Upper Midrange:

  • La Vela Boutique Hotel: La Vela offers stylish and comfortable rooms with a focus on sustainability. It's located near the entrance to Manuel Antonio National Park and provides easy access to both the park and the beach.

  • Shana By The Beach: A boutique hotel with modern amenities, Shana is close to the beach and town center. It features a beautiful pool area and a restaurant with ocean views.

  • Hotel San Bada: Situated right at the entrance to Manuel Antonio National Park, Hotel San Bada is convenient for exploring the park and its wildlife. The hotel offers comfortable rooms and a restaurant overlooking the rainforest.


  • The Falls Resort: This charming midrange option is surrounded by tropical gardens and features a lovely pool area. The Falls Resort offers comfortable accommodations and a tranquil atmosphere.

  • Hotel Costa Verde: Known for its unique airplane suite and proximity to the beach, Hotel Costa Verde offers a range of rooms to suit different budgets. It's a popular choice for both couples and families.

  • Hotel Karahe: Located right on Manuel Antonio Beach, Hotel Karahe is a budget-friendly option with basic but comfortable rooms. It's ideal for travelers looking for a beachfront experience without breaking the bank.

These hotels in Manuel Antonio provide a variety of options, from luxurious and upscale stays to comfortable midrange and budget-friendly choices. Whether you're seeking romance, adventure, or relaxation, you'll find an accommodation that suits your needs in this tropical paradise.

Wildlife watching in Manuel Antonio is amazing!

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Best Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Manuel Antonio offers a wide range of activities and attractions that cater to nature lovers, adventure enthusiasts, and those seeking relaxation. Here are some of the best things to do in Manuel Antonio:

Manuel Antonio National Park: Explore the lush rainforests and pristine beaches of this famous national park. Hike the well-maintained trails to spot a variety of wildlife, including monkeys, sloths, and colorful birds.

Beach Days: Spend your time lounging on the beautiful beaches of Manuel Antonio. Enjoy sunbathing, swimming, and building sandcastles at Manuel Antonio Beach and Espadilla Sur Beach.

Zip Lining and Canopy Tours: Get an adrenaline rush by zip-lining through the rainforest canopy. Many tour operators offer canopy adventures with multiple platforms and thrilling lines that provide panoramic views of the area.

Nauyaca Waterfalls: Take a day trip to the stunning Nauyaca Waterfalls, located about an hour south of Manuel Antonio. Hike through the lush jungle to reach these cascading waterfalls, where you can swim in the natural pools and admire the scenery.

Canyoning & Waterfall Rappelling: Imagine hiking through the dense jungle and then rappelling down rainforest waterfalls! Yes, you really can do this. It's safe and fun!

Rafting and Kayaking: Paddle down the Savegre or Naranjo Rivers on a rafting adventure, enjoying the rush of white-water rapids and taking in the scenic surroundings. You can also rent kayaks for a more tranquil experience on the calm coastal waters.

Mangrove Tours: Take a guided boat tour through the mangrove forests of Damas Island or the nearby Tarcoles River. These tours provide opportunities to see crocodiles and various bird species.

Surfing Lessons: Manuel Antonio's beaches offer ideal conditions for both beginners and experienced surfers. Sign up for surf lessons with local instructors and catch some waves.

Sportfishing: Try your hand at deep-sea or sportfishing excursions in the rich waters of the Pacific Ocean. Common catches include marlin, sailfish, dorado, and snapper.

Dining: Enjoy delicious Costa Rican cuisine at local restaurants in Manuel Antonio. Savor fresh seafood, traditional dishes, and international cuisine in a beachfront setting.

Relaxation and Spa: Many hotels and resorts in Manuel Antonio have on-site spas where you can unwind with massages and wellness treatments.

Sunset Viewing: Witness breathtaking sunsets over the Pacific Ocean from various viewpoints, including the beach and hillside locations.

These activities offer a mix of natural beauty, adventure, and relaxation, allowing you to make the most of your visit to Manuel Antonio. Whether you're exploring the rainforest, taking in the scenery, or enjoying outdoor adventures, this coastal paradise has plenty to offer.

The restaurant at Los Altos Resort

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The Best Restaurants in Manuel Antonio

Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, is not only famous for its stunning natural beauty but also for its diverse culinary scene. Here are some of the best restaurants in Manuel Antonio, where you can savor a variety of delicious dishes while enjoying breathtaking ocean views and a relaxed tropical atmosphere:

Emilio's Café: Emilio's Café is a Manuel Antonio institution known for its Mediterranean-inspired cuisine. Set on a hillside, this restaurant offers panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean and lush rainforest. The menu features fresh seafood, succulent steaks, and a range of creative dishes. Don't miss their famous seafood paella.

Ronny's Place: Perched on a hillside, Ronny's Place provides some of the most spectacular sunset views in Manuel Antonio. This restaurant specializes in seafood and international cuisine. Try their seafood platter, which includes a variety of fresh catches, or enjoy a delicious cocktail while taking in the view.

El Avión: Set within an old Fairchild C-123 cargo plane, El Avión offers a unique dining experience. This restaurant is renowned for its seafood and traditional Costa Rican dishes. The open-air setting and sunset views make it a favorite among visitors.

Gabriella's Steak and Seafood Restaurant: Located in the heart of Manuel Antonio, Gabriella's is known for its succulent steaks and fresh seafood. The restaurant has a cozy ambiance and serves a range of dishes, from filet mignon to grilled mahi-mahi.

Agua Azul: Agua Azul offers a blend of Mediterranean and Costa Rican cuisine in a lush rainforest setting. The restaurant features a natural waterfall and tropical gardens, providing a serene backdrop for your meal. Try their seafood dishes and cocktails.

La Luna Restaurant: Located on the road to the Manuel Antonio National Park, La Luna offers a charming beachfront setting. This Italian restaurant serves wood-fired pizzas, homemade pasta, and fresh seafood. Dining under the stars with the sound of the waves is a memorable experience.

Keep in mind that Manuel Antonio's dining scene is diverse, and there are many more restaurants to explore, ranging from casual beachfront cafes to upscale eateries. Reservations are recommended, especially during the high tourist season, to ensure you get a table at your preferred restaurant. Enjoy your culinary journey in this tropical paradise!

A spectacular Manuel Antonio sunset

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Beaches in Manuel Antonio

Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, is renowned for its pristine beaches, each offering unique charms and natural beauty. Here are some of the best beaches in Manuel Antonio:

Manuel Antonio Beach (Playa Manuel Antonio): This is the most famous beach in the area and is located within the Manuel Antonio National Park. The beach features soft, golden sands and gentle waves, making it perfect for swimming and sunbathing. Keep an eye out for monkeys and sloths in the surrounding trees. The beach can get crowded during peak tourist season, but it's worth a visit for its natural beauty.

Playa Espadilla: Adjacent to Manuel Antonio Beach, Playa Espadilla stretches along the coastline and is a bit less crowded. It's an excellent spot for a leisurely stroll along the shoreline. You'll find vendors selling coconuts and snacks along the beach.

Playa Biesanz: A hidden gem, Playa Biesanz is a secluded cove with calm waters, making it ideal for swimming and snorkeling. The beach is surrounded by lush jungle, providing shade and a peaceful atmosphere. You can rent kayaks and snorkel gear here to explore the underwater world.

Playa Gemelas: Gemelas means "twin sisters" in Spanish, and this beach consists of two small, picturesque bays separated by a rocky outcrop. This beach is inside of the national park. The clear waters and rocky tide pools make it a fantastic place for snorkeling and observing marine life.

Playa La Macha: Located between Manuel Antonio and Quepos, this beach is less crowded than Manuel Antonio Beach and offers excellent wildlife viewing opportunities. It's common to see capuchin monkeys and iguanas here. The beach is surrounded by lush vegetation, providing shade.

Playa Puerto Escondido: This beach is inside of Manuel Antonio National Park and is only accessible during low tide. Be careful, as you can get stuck there if the tide rises before you leave!

When visiting these beautiful Manuel Antonio beaches, it's essential to respect the local environment by avoiding littering, following park regulations, and not disturbing wildlife. Whether you're seeking relaxation, water sports, or wildlife encounters, Manuel Antonio's beaches have something to offer every type of traveler.

Playa Manuel Antonio

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Reasons to visit

  • The national park is loaded with wildlife.

  • The beaches are gorgeous.

  • There are few businesses on the beaches so it has a natural feel.

  • There are more activities available from this beach area than any other beach area in Costa Rica.

  • Most hotels and resorts are eco-friendly and built in tune with the surrounding nature.

  • There is an excellent bus system which runs between Quepos and the beach every half hour.

  • There is a wide variety of restaurants to choose from.

  • The sport fishing is excellent most of the year.

  • Great beach for swimming.

  • The north end of the beach is perfect to learn to surf.

Reasons NOT to visit

  • The majority of hotels and resorts are built on the hill.

  • If you prefer beaches with a boardwalk.

  • If you prefer beach front hotels versus jungle lined beaches.

  • The end of August through the beginning of November can be fairly rainy.

  • If wildlife does not intrigue you.

  • There are no all-inclusive resorts.

  • There is little nightlife.

  • Monkeys are known to come down and steal food from the table (yes, this is true).

  • While Manuel Antonio is home to a lot of wildlife and the national park, it is also one of the most popular beaches in Costa Rica.  If you are looking for an off the beaten path experience, this is not the best beach for you.

  • You prefer a lounge chair to a hammock.

  • Your money will not go as far as other beach areas.  Due to the popularity of Manuel Antonio and limited number of hotel rooms (there are plenty of hotels, but most have less than 20 rooms), accommodations in this area cost more than any other beach destination.

  • You are using Liberia as an airport (5 – 5.5 hour drive in each direction).

Capuchin monkey

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How to get there

From San Jose: Compared to other beach destinations in Costa Rica, Manuel Antonio is a short 3-hour drive from San Jose. Go west on Autopista del Sol (the Caldera Highway) to the town of Orotina and take the Costanera Sur Highway after the Pavon toll booth. Take the exit to Jaco and drive straight to Manuel Antonio. Jaco makes a great stopover if hunger strikes during your drive.

Transportation & Getting Around

You do not need a rental car in Manuel Antonio.  In fact, it can actually be a burden as parking spaces are limited. There is a beach bus that runs every half hour between Quepos and Manuel Antonio that costs around 50 cents.  There are also plenty of cabs.  In short, you will not have any difficulties getting around Manuel Antonio.

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Manuel Antonio Weather

Manuel Antonio, located on the Central Pacific coast of Costa Rica, typically experiences a tropical climate with distinct wet and dry seasons. Here's an overview of the weather in Manuel Antonio throughout the year.

Dry Season (December to April): This is considered the high tourist season in Manuel Antonio. During these months, you can expect plenty of sunshine, warm temperatures, and minimal rainfall. Daytime temperatures often range from 80°F to 90°F (27°C to 32°C), making it an ideal time for outdoor activities and enjoying the beautiful beaches.

Green Season (May to November): This period is characterized by more frequent rainfall, but it's also when the rainforest becomes lush and vibrant. While it can rain daily, showers are often short and followed by sunshine. The green season is an excellent time for nature enthusiasts as the landscape is teeming with life. Temperatures remain warm, typically between 75°F and 88°F (24°C to 31°C).

Rainiest Months: The rainiest months in Manuel Antonio are typically September and October, with the possibility of heavy downpours. During this time, some businesses may close temporarily for maintenance.

Secret Season (May and June): While this is the beginning of the Green Season, most rainfall is in the late afternoons and overnight. This is one of the most affordable times to visit and hotel availability is much easier than the Dry Season.

It's important to note that weather patterns can vary from year to year, so it's a good idea to check the local weather forecast before your trip. Additionally, keep in mind that the lush greenery during the green season can make for a unique and beautiful experience for travelers who don't mind occasional rain showers.

Scarlett Macaws

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Packing List for Manuel Antonio

Packing for Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, requires careful consideration of the tropical climate, outdoor activities, and your personal preferences. Here's a comprehensive packing list to ensure you're prepared for a memorable trip:


  • Lightweight, breathable clothing: T-shirts, tank tops, and shorts for hot weather.

  • Light, long-sleeve shirts and pants for sun protection and to deter mosquitoes in the evenings.

  • Swimsuits: You'll likely spend time at the beach.

  • Comfortable walking shoes or hiking boots for exploring trails and outdoor activities.

  • Sandals or flip-flops for beach and casual wear.

  • Rain jacket or poncho for unexpected rain showers during the green season.

  • Hat or cap with a wide brim for sun protection.

  • Sunglasses with UV protection.

  • Lightweight, breathable socks.

Outdoor Gear:

  • Daypack for hiking and excursions.

  • Water bottle or hydration system to stay hydrated.

  • Binoculars for wildlife watching.

  • Insect repellent with DEET to deter mosquitoes and other insects.

  • Sunscreen with high SPF for protection against strong tropical sun.

  • First aid kit with essentials like band-aids, antiseptic wipes, and pain relievers.

  • Ziplock bags for protecting electronics and valuables from rain and humidity.


  • Smartphone with travel apps for navigation, translation, and communication.

  • Camera with waterproof case or bag for capturing memories.

  • Chargers and power adapters for your devices.

Travel Documents:

  • Passport and copies of important documents stored separately.

  • Travel insurance documents.

  • Visa or entry documents if required.

  • Itinerary and hotel reservations.

  • Emergency contact information.


  • Cash in local currency (Costa Rican colón) for small purchases.

  • Credit/debit cards for larger expenses and emergencies.

  • Travel adapter if needed.

  • Spanish phrasebook or language app.

  • Travel guidebook or maps of the area.

  • Prescription medications and copies of prescriptions.

  • Travel pillow and eye mask for comfort on long journeys.

  • Zippered plastic bags for storing wet or dirty items.

  • Reusable shopping bag or tote for carrying items.

Optional Items:

  • Snorkeling gear if you plan to explore underwater.

  • Binoculars for birdwatching.

  • Portable phone charger or power bank.

  • Travel umbrella for unexpected rain.

  • Beach towels if not provided by your accommodation.

Remember that Manuel Antonio has a relaxed, beachy vibe, so pack clothing that's comfortable and suitable for a tropical climate. You can also find many items locally if you forget something. Don't overpack, as you'll want to leave room in your luggage for souvenirs and treasures from your Costa Rican adventure. Check our comprehensive Costa Rica packing list for more ideas.

Guided tour in Manuel Antonio National Park

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is Manuel Antonio Costa Rica worth visiting?

Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, is undoubtedly worth visiting for travelers who seek a harmonious blend of natural beauty, adventure, and wildlife encounters. This captivating destination boasts stunning beaches, lush jungles teeming with exotic flora and fauna, and abundant opportunities for animal sightings. If you're someone who appreciates the wonders of nature and enjoys activities like hiking through pristine rainforests, basking on idyllic beaches, and spotting monkeys, sloths, and vibrant bird species, then Manuel Antonio and its national park is a paradise waiting to be explored. The remarkable diversity of landscapes and the "pura vida" lifestyle in this region make it a must-visit for those seeking an enriching and unforgettable Costa Rican experience.

What is special about Manuel Antonio?

Manuel Antonio is truly a natural paradise that encapsulates the essence of Costa Rica's beauty and biodiversity. What makes it special is its remarkable blend of stunning landscapes and rich wildlife. The lush rainforests, pristine beaches, and rugged mountains provide a picturesque backdrop for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers. The Manuel Antonio National Park, in particular, is a gem within this region, where visitors can embark on thrilling hikes to discover hidden beaches, observe diverse wildlife, and take in breathtaking vistas.

Moreover, the charm of Manuel Antonio lies in its accessibility to a wide range of outdoor activities, from zip-lining through the treetops to romantic catamaran cruises to amazing nature hikes. The welcoming "pura vida" culture adds to its allure, with friendly locals eager to share their traditions and cuisine. Whether you're seeking adventure, relaxation, or a deep connection with nature, Manuel Antonio offers a unique and unforgettable experience that sets it apart as a special destination in Costa Rica.

What is Manuel Antonio Beach (Playa Manuel Antonio) known for?

Manuel Antonio Beach is celebrated for its stunning natural beauty and the harmonious blend of lush rainforest and pristine shoreline. This captivating beach, nestled within the Manuel Antonio National Park in Costa Rica, is known for its breathtaking scenery. Visitors are greeted by soft, white sands caressed by the clear, azure waters of the Pacific Ocean, all framed by the verdant tropical rainforest that cascades down to the coast. It's a place where the juxtaposition of vibrant greenery and turquoise sea creates a picturesque backdrop that's nothing short of mesmerizing.

However, what truly sets Manuel Antonio Beach apart is its remarkable wildlife encounters. It's renowned for being a place where you can spot a diverse array of creatures, including monkeys, sloths, colorful birds, and exotic insects, right on the beach. This unique opportunity to connect with nature in such an idyllic coastal setting is what makes Manuel Antonio Beach an unforgettable destination for nature lovers and travelers seeking a pristine and ecologically rich beach experience.

Is Manuel Antonio Costa Rica expensive?

Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, can be considered relatively more expensive compared to some other regions in the country. The higher cost of living in this area, as well as its popularity as a tourist destination, contribute to the overall expenses. Accommodation options in and around Manuel Antonio, especially those with ocean views or close proximity to the national park, tend to be on the pricier side. Additionally, dining at upscale restaurants or participating in adventure activities like zip-lining and guided wildlife tours can add to the overall cost of your visit.

However, it's important to note that Manuel Antonio offers a wide range of accommodation and dining options, so budget-conscious travelers can still find more affordable choices. Additionally, exploring the beautiful Manuel Antonio National Park, relaxing on the public beaches, and enjoying local street food can help offset some of the costs. Ultimately, while Manuel Antonio may be relatively more expensive compared to other areas in Costa Rica, it offers a unique and rewarding experience that many travelers find well worth the investment.

Is it safe to swim in Manuel Antonio?

Swimming in Manuel Antonio can be safe, but it's essential to exercise caution and be aware of the local conditions. Manuel Antonio boasts beautiful beaches with inviting waters, but like any coastal area, there are some considerations to keep in mind.

Firstly, be mindful of strong currents and tides, especially during certain times of the year. It's a good practice to check with locals for any current warnings or safety advice. Secondly, while the waters are generally safe for swimming, it's always wise to respect the ocean and its unpredictable nature. Always swim within designated areas and pay attention to any posted safety signs. Additionally, if you're not a strong swimmer, consider using a life jacket or other flotation devices for added safety. Thirdly, the different beaches have different currents. If you have small children, consider visiting Playa Biesanz, which is in a protective cove and has minimal currents or riptides. Still, practice obvious precautions with children and do not swim too far from shore. Overall, by staying informed and following safety guidelines, you can enjoy a safe and enjoyable swimming experience in Manuel Antonio's beautiful waters.

Is one day in Manuel Antonio enough?

The ideal duration for your visit to Manuel Antonio depends on your interests and what you'd like to experience. If your primary goal is to explore the Manuel Antonio National Park, one day can provide a fulfilling experience. However, if you want to fully immerse yourself in the region's natural beauty and gorgeous beaches, engage in various outdoor activities, and savor the local culture and cuisine, then we highly recommend a more extended stay of 3 to 5 nights. This allows you ample time to explore the park's hiking trails, spot wildlife, relax on the beaches, and partake in adventure activities like zip-lining or rafting. Moreover, a longer stay gives you the opportunity to soak in the "pura vida" lifestyle and truly appreciate the richness of Manuel Antonio and its surroundings.

Which is better Tamarindo or Manuel Antonio?

The choice between Tamarindo and Manuel Antonio depends on your preferences and the type of experience you seek. Tamarindo is located on the northern Pacific coast of Costa Rica and is known for its vibrant beach town atmosphere, bustling nightlife, and a wide range of water sports and surf activities. If you're looking for a lively beach destination with a variety of dining options and a younger, more energetic vibe, Tamarindo might be the better choice for you.

On the other hand, Manuel Antonio, situated on the central Pacific coast, offers a more tranquil and natural setting. It's famous for its stunning national park, pristine beaches, and abundant wildlife. If you prefer a quieter, nature-centric getaway with opportunities for hiking, wildlife spotting, and a more relaxed pace, then Manuel Antonio is the ideal destination. It's also known for its lush rainforests, which provide a unique backdrop for exploring the Costa Rican wilderness. Ultimately, the choice between Tamarindo and Manuel Antonio comes down to your personal interests and the type of experience you desire, whether it's vibrant beach town energy or a serene and nature-filled escape.

Is Manuel Antonio a party town?

No, Manuel Antonio is not primarily known as a party town. Unlike some other coastal destinations in Costa Rica, Manuel Antonio has a more laid-back and tranquil atmosphere. While you can find a variety of bars and restaurants where you can enjoy a drink and some live music in the evenings, the overall nightlife scene is relatively subdued compared to party-centric places.

Manuel Antonio is renowned for its natural beauty, pristine beaches, and abundant wildlife. Visitors are often drawn to this area for its opportunities to explore the Manuel Antonio National Park, engage in outdoor activities like hiking and wildlife watching, and immerse themselves in the "pura vida" lifestyle. If you're looking for a more relaxed and nature-focused vacation rather than a party scene, Manuel Antonio offers a perfect escape.

How many days are enough in Manuel Antonio?

The ideal duration for your visit to Manuel Antonio depends on your interests and the depth of experience you desire. For a basic exploration of the Manuel Antonio National Park and some relaxation on the beautiful beaches, a minimum of two days is recommended. This allows you to dedicate one day to exploring the park's hiking trails, spotting wildlife, and enjoying the natural beauty, and another day for beach activities and relaxation.

However, to fully immerse yourself in the region's natural wonders, engage in various outdoor adventures, and savor the local culture and cuisine, a stay of 3 to 5 days is highly recommended. This extended visit allows you ample time to explore the park in detail, participate in activities like zip-lining or snorkeling, and truly embrace the "pura vida" lifestyle. Additionally, it provides the flexibility to take leisurely strolls on the beaches, dine at local restaurants, and fully appreciate the charm of Manuel Antonio and its surroundings. Ultimately, the number of days you spend in Manuel Antonio should align with your interests and the depth of your exploration.

How to dress for Manuel Antonio Costa Rica?

To dress appropriately for Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, it's best to focus on lightweight and breathable clothing suitable for the tropical climate. Opt for comfortable attire like shorts, t-shirts, sundresses, and swimwear for beach days. Don't forget sturdy, closed-toe shoes for activities like hiking in the rainforest, and consider packing a lightweight waterproof jacket or poncho for potential rain showers. Sun protection essentials like sunglasses, a wide-brimmed hat, and high SPF sunscreen are crucial, as well as insect repellent to ward off mosquitoes. For a comprehensive packing list tailored to your specific travel plans, it's advisable to check our recommended packing lists, which are also on this page..

Why do people visit Manuel Antonio?

People visit Manuel Antonio for a myriad of compelling reasons that highlight the unique appeal of this Costa Rican destination. One of the primary draws is the stunning natural beauty, including pristine beaches, lush rainforests, and breathtaking vistas. Manuel Antonio National Park, in particular, is a hotspot for visitors due to its remarkable biodiversity, offering opportunities to spot monkeys, sloths, colorful birds, and other wildlife in their natural habitat.

Adventure seekers are attracted to Manuel Antonio's wide range of outdoor activities, from thrilling zip-lining adventures to exploring hidden waterfalls and rafting warm tropical rivers. The region's commitment to conservation and eco-tourism also appeals to those looking to engage with nature responsibly. The warm and welcoming "pura vida" culture, combined with a variety of dining options and the chance to immerse oneself in the local way of life, adds to the allure. Overall, people visit Manuel Antonio to experience the perfect blend of nature, adventure, and relaxation in a captivating Costa Rican setting.

Fun Fact: Manuel Antonio Beach is located within the national park and can only be visited with a paid entrance. This is the most deserted of the beaches and an absolute tropical paradise. 


Latitude: N 9° 24' 35"
Longitude: W 84° 9' 18.94"

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