They do 2 tours a day, 9:30 & 11:30. They rescue hurt or abandoned animals, nurse them back to health and then reintroduce them to their habitat. They do good work, and give a great tour. Saw sloths, parrots, caiman, owls, birds of prey and they let you go into the monkey cage--so you're in the middle of monkeys flying all around. One jumped on my back and stayed there, then walked over me and over my head and took off for somewhere else. It's located on the main road, there are plenty of signs to see it.
If you are looking for yoga in Costa Rica, I can't say enough good things about the instructor, Silvia Broussard.
She teaches at Shakti Yoga Studio https://www.facebook.com/pages/Shakti-Yoga-Studio/116082825145542?ref=ts in Puerto Viejo (on the Caribbean side).
You can read all about her classes in my recent story : "New Life Lessons Learned Through Yoga in Costa Rica."
The walk from PV to Punta Uva is pleasant and a great way to take in the sites. However, the first few kilometres south of town can be very dusty and heavy with traffic. Take the alternative which is the path along the beach. It starts just south of town,and goes all the way to Cocles. Its very well shaded and is cool even on a hot day.
The path is also manageable by bicycle but be careful on the bridges.
Don't take this path at night however as there have been a few thefts and attacks.
Fantastic flora & fauna! It is a working tropical garden of spices,nuts,friuts,nursery plants etc.Take the guided tour if possible,you'll learn so much more.No one was available to take us so we did the self guided & it was still great!We took our time looking at & listening to everything & it took us about 3 hrs but you can stay all day if you want.Strawberry Poison Dart Frogs are everywhere & some of the coolest insects you'll ever see!The rare Yellow-striped Poison Dart Frog has taken up residence in their Bromilead nursery,definately worth a look see!At the end of touring around there is an area where you can taste some of the things they grow,some really interesting foodstuffs.Warning-the Durian tastes & smells awful! We bought fresh pepper to take home with us...mmm excellent! It was $5.00(US) self guided or $10.00 with a guide."Usually" only open Fri.-Mon.
My boyfriend and I decided that it was worth trying because we've never done anything like it, and also, how many times in your life are you able to zip line through the rain forest? You can book it through any of the agencies in the town and it's $55 per person. Definitely worth it! There were about 20 different platforms that we zip lined off of through the lush greenery which lasted approximately an hour. During our air tour through the forest, we saw a sloth, different types of insects, and heard the howler monkeys. It was unforgettable for both me and my boyfriend. If you're not scared of heights, or the fact that you would be harnessed to a cable, I would definitely recommend this. C'mon, live a little!
If you're in the area from now until June, make sure not to miss the nighttime turtle nesting tour. You need to go with a guide, the location is pretty remote and you're not allowed flash photography or flashlights but you'll see some amazing turtles -- sometimes giant turtles that are hundreds of pounds!
Not far north (but you'll need a cab) is Parque Nacional Cahuita, where you can hike along nice trails which run parallel to the beach. The Jungle literally meets the beach here, very beautiful and un-crowded (off-season) full of monkeys and sloths that you can actually see, apparently home to a very poisonous yellow snake too, so you may not want to go poking around off-trail like I did. They say you've really gotta watch your stuff when you go in for a swim - if the criminals don't rip you off - the monkeys will. We had the cab drop us at the south entrance, where we paid a small fee, and walked all the way to Cahuita, it's a long walk but if you're a wimp, the cab will take you half way and you can go from there.
Surprisingly not exciting, the one we went on was called "Crazy Monkey" and it's not that there was anything wrong with it... It's just that I was expecting some really wild, scary thing. As it turns out; the jungle looks about the same high up on a platform as it does on the ground. The zip line thing was pretty simple, from platform to platform, ending on the beach, yawn... One cool thing was the bar/lounge in the jungle - it was part of a tent hotel (same owners) a real nice (& big) bar, open - with no walls, in the jungle, cool.
As in most of Costa Rica there are gorgeous flowers everywhere!! I always love to see the beautiful gingers as well as some pretty unknown to me types!! This area is very lush as they receive more rain than the other coast. It's very lush!!
After our kayak tour of the river we spent another hour here. I have to admit the beach was even nicer than Playa Cocles. The sand was softer and the water was bluer. There was a smallish coral reef that some people were snokeling at...but didn't look like there was much action down there.
It was only $35 and a very low skill level was needed...good thing since my brother hadn't ever kayaked before. We were picked up at our Bungalow at 9am by Fernando. We were driven by a taxi (which happened to be a truck w/ the kayaks in the back). After a short lesson in how to manuver the kayak we were off into the jungle surrounded river at Punta Uva. Fernando pointed out many animals including bats, monkeys, turtles, birds, and the famous Jesus Christ lizards. We also saw some odd fruits and plants, along w/ some enormous spider. When we got to the end of the river we got out and walked around a little before turning back. Fernando pointed out armadillo holes, and most likely some boa holes... at that point we all decided to get out of there :)
After paddling back to the ocean we paddled out onto the open water. Fernando lead us through a small but challenging cave just for kicks. The water was a little rough...I had a great time with this challenge, but my brother got a little nervous. We then paddled to shore and played on the beach for the next hour.
$35pp for all that (4hours) was totally worth it.
After seeing the beach in PV I was glad I decided to stay 2 miles out of town at Playa Cocles. It was a MUCH better beach. There was never more than 10 people on the beach at the same time. Very quiet, clean, and calm water.
We had wanted to do a canopy tour in Manuel Antonio but were rained out so, thanks to Terraventuras (office located right across from bus stop downtown), we went with the $50 four hour canopy tour a few kilometres out of town: we got water, fresh fruits, transportation there and back, bilingual guides and all safety equipment.
This agency had very excellent safety practices and were very good at ensuring everyone had a fun, safe time. The canopy tour does involve some hiking upwards so you should be in decent shape and wear comfy clothing (pants or long cargos) and decent shoes. Some platforms are over 150 feet upwards in the jungle!
Every place you go on the main strip, there is live music or movies playing. You can walk up and down the street and check each one of them out. You'll spend most of your days lazying out on the beautiful beaches or go on a biking adventure. If the waves are right, you can do a bit of surfing as well.
Walk through downtown at night; the ambience is just gorgeous. Costa Rica is one of those countries with dependable light. That means, it gets light early and dark around 6 pm year round. You can count on at least 12 hours of daylight, which is fantastic. However, for someone like me that lives in a region with a rather varied light schedule, this really throws me off. During summer where I live, it can stay light out till 9-10 at night. Then I go to bed. Here, I want to do the same thing, that is go to bed when it gets dark. Hence, I am tired when it is 6 pm.
Sorry for that tangent, but let’s back to the street ambience…there is minimal street lighting in town, so most of the lights come from stores or restaurants. Some restaurants place colorful luminaries along the road to attract customers. It’s an odd feeling walking down a dimly lit road, and it makes the town feel like a completely different one at night. Now that the sun’s gone down the locals come out from hiding; they infest the streets with contagious laughter and song. The reggae beats fill the air and smells of rum permeate your nostrils. Vividly colored lights lure you in all directions while the ocean waves crash to shore and fill the background noise.