Manuel Antonio is home to a namesake national park full of unspoiled beaches and world-class views. As soon as your feet sink into the soft white sand of Playa Manuel Antonio, and you jump into its gentle, turquoise waters, the reason why people flock here will become overwhelmingly clear.
Along the central pacific coast in the Puntarenas Province sits a Costa Rican paradise known as Manuel Antonio National Park, established on November 15th, 1972. Its land area consists of 682 hectares (7,000 acres) and an additional 55,000 hectares (136,000 acres) of marine park. In 2011, it was named by Forbes as one of the world’s most beautiful parks.
The rich biodiversity of this area, coupled with a wealth of activities make this a destination that offers something for everyone. It’s easy to spend your entire holiday in this area of the country! Manuel Antonio is the premier destination of the Central Pacific region offering a variety of small intimate hotels artistically built into a rainforest hillside between Quepos and the popular Manuel Antonio National Park.
The two main beaches inside the park, Espadilla Beach and Manuel Antonio Beach are about a 30-minute hike from the main entrance of the park. Manuel Antonio beach is best known for its spectacular views, but if you’re looking to beat the crowds, venture a bit further down the main trail to Espadilla Beach. It’s also a great idea to visit the surrounding areas, such as Quepos and Escondida Beach.
Escondida Beach is perhaps the less visited by tourists who sometimes crowd this area of the country, which, attracted by the easy visualization of the animals in this small park they live, come to visit the national park. It is a large beach, although rocky, which is reached after a walk among palm trees, mangroves and other autochthonous plants, but that distant perhaps is what makes most people, accommodated in the other beaches, do not go near this area and you can enjoy the most natural environment, the sound of the waves crashing against the shore and the small animals that come out of hiding shyly.
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