Provincia de Puntarenas Things to Do
Things to Do
My horse Barney and my friend's horse...
The isolated area of waterfalls and...
The beach at Isla Tortuga
Pura VIda from Monkey Bar
Reviews from VirtualTourist Members
I'm no expert but I really enjoyed seeing the beautiful birds in this area of Costa Rica . The amazing thing about Costa Rica is the diversity of animals and birds for such a small country.Sometimes the best birds weren't on the trails but would visit us at the pool or outdoor restaurant.
White faced monkeys
The first time we saw these fellows was from our hotel balcony one morning. We tromped twice through the park and hike for hours on the various trails...saw none. The next morning there was a clammering on our roof and there they were...a whole troop . They're beautiful monkeys..quite large. The white-faced Capuchin monkey diet consists of fruit, leaves, insects, small mammals and bird eggs.
Iguana on beach
We heard a rustling behind us as we sat on the beach.having lunch....it gave us a bit of a start...it was a big friendly looking iguana. I think he was looking for some sandwich. The beach at manuael Antonio had tons of iguana. There were some vibrant colored ones as well.
This cute little guy ( from the racoon family) stolled across our path while we were looking for monkeys in Manuel Antonio . The male travels alone ....the females are often in large groups. I got so excited I didn't get a great picture. Sorry!
The tiny squirrel monkey is amazing .It is the only region in Costa Rica we have seen this little one.The smallest Costa Rican primate, the squirrel monkey, or titi, is restricted to the rainforests of the southern Pacific lowlands. By 1983, the Central American squirrel monkey had already declined drastically through clearing of forests. Currently, deforestation and tourism development are the major causes of decline. Insecticide spraying, the pet trade and electrocution from electric power lines have also adversely affected these squirrel monkeys.
Manuel Antonio Park
This is the park that originally brought so many tourists to Manuel Antonio...now they come for the beach as well. You would see more with a guide and there are lots available ..at the entrance. Make sure you get one with a scope. There are many trails in the park ....the steepest is cathedral ( actually saw the least wildlife on this one ...but the view is good). The widest main trail is a favorite hangout for the monkeys and its easy to spot the birds here too. As with all trails its best to go early in the morning.Park opens at 7AM and is closed on Mondayentrance fee is $7.00
Relaxing in the Pacific Sunshine
Despite its rather deceiving name, the Fiesta Caribbean Resort is actually located on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, only a short drive away from Puntarenas! After our pleasant stay in the rain forest foothills at Villa Lapas, followed up by our trip to Arenal volcano, we were now ready for some serious relaxing at a more traditional type of resort! We really enjoyed both the swimming pool area and the dining facilities in this resort. It was also great just to lay around in the sunshine for the final few days of our trip before we had to head back to the frozen wastes of the north. Our room was really nice as well and we continued to enjoy the company of our friends Frank and Isabel from our earlier adventures at Villa Lapas!
Hot Springs !
Once it became clear that our effort to observe the Arenal volcano was not going to work out, due to the cloudy weather, the bus dropped our entire group off at the nearby Tabacon Hot Springs. This is an amazing series of hot and steaming pools of water bubbling out of the volcano, some being hotter than others. The entire area is very well landscaped with foliage and equipped with great changing rooms, gift shops and restaurant/bar complex. Normally the admission fee is US$19 for adults but we were admitted as part of the volcano tour package. There is a small fee to rent a locker for your clothes and any other personal belongings that you want to stash while relaxing in the soothing waters!
See a Volcano!
On our attempt to see the relatively nearby Arenal volcano, we were thwarted by clouds around its peak, as you can see in this photo. Nevertheless, you should take a stab at trying to see at least one of the volcanos in Costa Rica - usually you do not get the opportunity very often! Arenal, at 1633 m (~5000 ft.) high is the most active volcano in the country, regularly spewing tumbling rocks, ash, smoke or lava on almost a daily basis. This volcano had been dormant for 400 years and was actually considered extinct until it suddenly erupted in July, 1968. That unexpected eruption killed 87 people and destroyed 3 villages. Not long before our try, a couple of people had been killed when they got too close and were taken by a surprise eruption.
Try Bird-Watching While You Chill-Out
After our morning exertion on the Skyway, it was time to savour some of the delights of Villa Lapas! One of my favourite spots was their outdoor patio area beside the restaurant that overlooked the brook as it trickled down from the mountains. Here, it was not difficult to enjoy a cold Imperial beer as the gentle breezes wafted by! I have always found that, as a bird-watcher, no matter where you are in the world, it makes life more interesting if you just observe what is going on around you - sometimes it is amazing what you will see if you take the time to look! While sitting here we saw several species of small birds as well as the graceful White Ibis and what looked like an Anhinga - a bird with a snake-like neck for darting fish.
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