South from Manuel Antonio to Uvita and Sierpe, Costa Rica (Trip Report)

This is the second of 3 trip reports following our recent visit to Costa Rica.


We drove South from Manuel Antonio encountering many random small surfing hang-outs en route.  First stop on the drive was Matapalo – a super sleepy village on the coast.  There was a handful of simple looking places to stay, but it was all almost too quiet and sleepy.  If you want to really get away from everything whilst on vacation in Costa Rica, Matapalo is a great place to do so.   

Travelling South, the next little village in Dominical – a funky little surfing hangout that would have provoked me to spend a few nights if I hadn’t already had a reservation further down the coast.  Dominical is a great place to learn to surf in Costa Rica, or otherwise chill on the beach soaking up the laid back vibe.  The place somehow reminded me a lot of Jericoacoara in Brazil. 

Further South still is Uvita where there is a very scenic pacific coastline.  We stayed up in the hills, a little back from the coast – at a beautiful luxury hotel called Rancho Pacifico that I can wholeheartedly recommend as a very special place to relax.  We enjoyed exploring the surrounds of Uvita – places such as Playa Tortuga, the marine national park Parque Nacional Marino Ballena (only really worth visiting from December to April and August to October when it is easy to spot whales) and the beautiful Playa Hermosa.  An hours drive from Uvita is Sierpe, which is where the remote rainforests of the Osa peninsula begin.  Sierpe is a great place to take wildlife boat tours – in a few hours it’s possible to see a huge variety of rainforest wildlife whilst gently crusing up or down river.  It’s easy to arrange such 3 hour tours by simply arriving in Sierpe and looking around you’ll find a variety of tour providers.  It is also under two hours by boat to Corcovado National Park – a truly remote part of the Osa Peninsula that is one of Latin America’s top destinations for wildlife watching holidays.        

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