The small coastal town of Puerto Viejo de Talamanca in the Caribbean Costa Rica is a backpacker’s paradise and surfers too. This town is gifted with many of the Limón province’s majestic forests and splendid beaches. It is also beside two splendid National Parks, the Cahuita and the Manzanillo for your trekking pleasure.
Much of the wild jungle feel is slowly disappearing because many foreigners or expats coming here to take their slice of the land for their commercial motives. So enjoy the remaining lush forests and unspoiled beaches while you can before hordes of tourists start pouring in. Oh, and don’t forget to bring your ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization) Visa with you for an incredible and hassle free fun adventure. Read more about ESTA.
Once a humble fishing village, Puerto Viejo is now experiencing steep economical growth driven by its tourism industry. It is very popular for its crystal clear waters and coconut palms which are the signature feel of the Caribbean. The town is also the focal point of activities between the villages around Cahuita and Manzanillo. Add the deafening jungle silence and the spellbinding banana plantations and magnificent rivers, you get yourself a quaint paradise. If you love reggae or the Rastafarian culture, you will simply fall in love with the town. The colorful lifestyle of the town is attributed to the Rastafarian’s living in the town who are also selling vibrant souvenir items such as handmade jewelries among other stuff along the town’s eclectic roadsides.
Sine the town is practically surrounded by lush tropical forest, many tourists love exploring the jungles on foot. Once you reach the fresh grounds of the Cahuita National Park or the Gandoca-Manzanillo National Wildlife Refuge, you will be greeted by stunning wildlife. Don’t forget to be on your cargo pants because the wild can be irritable at times. Nonetheless, you can let the guide pick some fresh fruits for you or you can simply pick some yourself right off the tall trees like a monkey.
You can find the splendid beaches of the Playa Cocles, Playa Chiquita, and Punta Uva just south of Puerto Viejo. The roads connecting these beaches are now paved and you don’t even have to reserve for a hotel since there are plenty of beachfront cabins for rent; didn’t I just tell you that this is the backpacker’s paradise? There are also many restaurants in the area including fantastic shops. If you have more budget, do take a room in one of the posh resorts since they come with various amenities too such as exclusive pools and panoramic ocean views.
I save the best for last for a good reason. Ever heard of Salsa Bravas? These are crazy beautiful waves to ride for professional surfers. Some surfers call them riptides, and if you don’t feel like you’re qualified to ride them, just marvel at the ones enjoying the waves. You should visit during the rainy season (Dec-April) to catch these amazing waves on Playa Cocles.