National Park Manuel Antonio
Manuel Antonio National Park and beaches:
Manuel Antonio National Park in was established 1972, Costa Rica decided to preserve, for future generations, one of the most beautiful and bio-diverse areas in the world. Although it is the country’s smallest national park, the stunning beauty and diversity of wildlife in its 683 hectares is unequaled.
Manuel Antonio contains a charming combination of rain forest, beaches and coral reefs. These beaches are the most beautiful in the country, lined with lush forest, and the snorkeling is excellent too. The forest is home for sloths, iguanas, the rare and adorable squirrel monkeys and millions of colorful little crabs. And the trail that winds around Punta Catedral affords some spectacular views. The park is easy to reach, south of the town of Quepos, and is near a good selection of hotels and restaurants.
Travel to the area is easy and can be done in a number of different ways. Regularly scheduled air service is available through Sansa Airlines, the flight takes 40 minutes. By car is a two hour ride or more depending on the traffic since there is a new highway (route 27) that reduced the driving time a lot, or you can take a bus from San José.
Direct buses leave from Coca Cola bus terminal in San José three times a day. These are large, comfortable Mercedes buses.
If you are renting a car it is advisable to rent a 4X4 vehicle because certain sections of the road around can be difficult. However with the new highway to Quepos and Manuel Antonio you can rent a seadan is you wish.
On the way you can stop by Turu Ba Ri park and enjoy any of the nature or adventure tour the park offers. The park is just 10 minutes from Orotina. You can also just stop for lunch, there is no entrance fee and the buffet style lunch is delicious,
Bus service between Quepos’ main terminal and the national park departs every half hour from 5:00 am till 10:00 pm and is less than $0.40.
The Manuel Antonio National Park entrance fee is US$10 per person, children under 12 free. Hours: 7am to 4pm Closed on Monday.