We left the Guanacaste region in the morning and we head out to Parque Nacional Manuel Antonio. It is difficult to leave behind such pretty beaches but we know that more beaches await for us ahead. We got breakfast in a restaurant at the entrance of Nicola city. We are able to get a buffet style breakfast, and I can avoid the gallo pinto. I can deal with rice and beans for breakfast just not everyday.
We then drove on to Jaco (photo above). The beach has black, really black sand….irrefutable signs of its volcanic past. There were strong currents in here, so we had to be careful. We had lunch at Jaco, which reminds me that we have had food in multiple places across Costa Rica and every place has been delicious, I think this may be because the food is organic. Even the bread melts slowly in your mouth as you take a bite…it’s unbelievable. We’re coffee lovers and Costa Rica coffee is amazing wherever we have it. We’ll have to make sure to pack a few pounds.
We arrived at Manuel Antonio, our hotel is practically next door to the park entrance. We enjoyed the sunset at Biezans beach. Manuel Antonio is open from 7am until 3pm. We decided to go to bed early to get up early.
Right after breakfast we head straight to the park, we need to buy the tickets. Which by the way are $16 per person, Costa Ricans’ entrance fee is $3.
At the entrance you can get a guide, we decided not to. We got a map along with our entrance and we thought this should be enough. Upon entering the park we see monkeys high up on the trees. You can bring water, fruits and such. Nothing packaged and they ask people not to feed the animals.
We decided to hiked for half a mile to see a waterfall, but it was miniature not worth the hike or the time. Next we moved on to the first beach in the park: Manuel Antonio beach. It is beautiful but because it was the first one in the trails it was full of people, plus you have to be careful with the animals. They are used to seeing people and it is normal, so normal that we actually saw a raccoon trying to steal a woman’s purse, can you believe that? He actually fought the woman for the purse as she pulled it away from the animal, while we all looked in disbelief. Nobody was hurt but it was the funniest thing!
We hiked to the next beach: Espadilla Sur. It is a short hike, but along the way we saw cappuccino monkeys. They are not afraid and they get pretty close to the people on the trails. In this beach an iguana got suspiciously close to a lady’s purse….I think the iguana could smell the fruits.
From Espadilla Sur, you can actually see the Biezans beach and vice versa. We leave the park to get lunch, you can only enter the park one time. If you need to re-enter you have to pay again. We had lunch and then just hang out at the hotel’s pool. Afterwards we go back to Biezans beach to see the sunset. This will be the last sunset we’ll enjoy in a while.
After sunset, something incredible happened: troops of squirrels monkeys came out of the forest into the area where humans are, lots of them came out…they were looking for food. It was pretty interesting to see them coming in from the forest. Can you spot the monkeys in the picture below?
If you couldn’t here’s one picture up close and personal of the squirrel monkeys; Aren’t they the cutest thing??
- PIPA- In some areas of Costa Rica, including Guanacaste region, Ticos call coconuts: “pipas” where in other regions of Costa Rica they’re call cocos. So if you see signs that say: cold pipas they’re cold coconuts.
- SODA-These are small mom and pop’s restaurants. Mostly the locals eat here. It’s really affordable food.