Things to Do in Jaco & the Central Pacific Coast

Don't Miss: A sunset cocktail at the spectacular Villas Caletas amphitheater.

A lush, mountainous shoreline with strips of sandy beaches overlooking a sparkling expanse of blue are characteristic of the Central Pacific coast. The region is home to the popular surf town of Jaco, Carara Biological Reserve, and the beloved Manuel Antonio National Park.

Jaco Beach

To the north of Manuel Antonio National Park lies the small seaside town of Jacó, known for its hidden beaches, sportfishing, excellent surfing spots, and its unique position between the dry northern regions of the country and the tropical southern zone. Between the natural beauty and the luxury accommodations, it’s no surprise Jaco is swiftly developing into a major tourist attraction. Whether you’re looking for a secluded hilltop hideaway, a family-friendly ocean resort, or a top surfing destination, the Central Pacific Coast may provide just what you’re looking for.

Related Article: Best Beaches of Costa Rica

Carara National Park

Carara Biological Reserve

Scarlet Macaw at Carara Biological Reserve

Originally created as a biological reserve, Carara upgraded to a national park in 1998. Carara National Park is the most northern rainforest on Costa Rica’s Pacific Coast. The park draws in birdwatchers for its large population of scarlet macaws and other tropical birds. Travelers can also see both the three and two-toed sloth within the park as well as the famous Crocodile Bridge overlooking Tarcoles River, where wild crocodiles – some as large as 16 feet in length – can be observed in their natural setting from the bridge. There are two hiking trails in the park: the 2.7-mile Laguna Meandrica Trail and 0.6-mile Araceas Nature Trail. Carara National Park’s is an easily accessible day trip for travelers staying on the Central Pacific Coast and in the San Jose area.

Related Article: Best Costa Rica National Parks

Bijagual Waterfall Horseback Ride

In Bijagual, a mountain town near Jaco, Bijagual Waterfall is the main attraction. The most popular way to experience the 590-foot waterfall is on a guided horseback riding tour. Be on the lookout for wildlife such as frogs, monkeys, toucans, sloths and scarlet macaws and enjoy views overlooking the Pacific Ocean and seaside fishing villages. Tours can be arranged upon request.

Related Article: Costa Rica Waterfalls You Must Visit

Puntarenas

The nearby port town of Puntarenas serves as the embarkation point for picnic cruises to the idyllic islands in the Gulf of Nicoya.

Herradura Beach

Things to Do in Jaco Costa Rica

Playa Herradura is a great beach to escape to, and the calm waters are perfect for swimming. Situated on the Playa Herradura is the Los Suenos Marriott, one of the most popular resorts in the area. The Marriott is especially popular for its marina and golf course.

Jaco Sportfishing

Things to Do in Jaco Costa Rica

Sportfishing in this area is a popular pastime, and the Marriott Marina is a launching point for a number of charter fishing boats. Sailfish are a favorite – and anglers seldom disappoint!

Related Article: Top Places for Fishing in Costa Rica

Jaco Attractions

  • Jaco Beach
  • Carara Biological Reserve
  • Surfing
  • Scuba & Snorkeling
  • Gulf of Nicoya
  • Nightlife
  • Tarcoles River
  • Fishing

 More Things to Do in and Around Jaco

  • Manuel Antonio National Park Day Tour
  • Carrara National Park Hike
  • Sea Kayak & Snorkeling
  • Tortuga Island Cruise
  • Bijagual Waterfall Horseback Ride
  • Canopy Tour
  • Mangrove & Crocodile Adventure
  • Pura Vida Botanical Gardens

Jaco & Central Pacific Travel Information

Climate: Dry- December to April, Wet- May to November, Wettest- September & October
Temperature: Avg. high 92°, tropical weather with afternoon showers typical May to November.

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