Manuel Antonio is perhaps the most activity-rich area in Costa Rica, and it’s fairly easy to get overwhelmed by all the tours available to you. You have only so much time and will be able to participate in only a few activities while in the area, so what should you do? In this article you are going to discover the top 10 things to do in Manuel Antonio Costa Rica.
Here are the ten Best Things to do in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica:
1. Admire the beauties of Manuel Antonio National Park
Many guides are going to recommend that you visit Manuel Antonio National Park. And there’s a reason for this – Manuel Antonio National Park is the gem of Costa Rica and one of the most beautiful national parks in the world.
Manuel Antonio National Park boasts the widest range of wildlife species in the country, as well as allows you to admire the environment via canopy, kayaking, and catamaran tours.
You could book a tour from the park’s website directly or even better you could opt for vacation itinerary that includes Manuel Antonio as part of the package, like Costa Rica Natural Jewels or Costa Rica Coast to Coast, where the tour to Manuel Antonio National Park is just part of what is waiting for you in Costa Rica.
2. Partake exotic fruits and spices at Rainforest Spices
If you want to try local exotic foods, then the Rainforest Spices farm tour is perhaps the best way to do so. This farm isn’t exactly in Manuel Antonio, but being just 10 miles outside of Quepos, it’s a place that you may want to pay a visit to.
Here, you will be able to partake vanilla, Ceylon cinnamon, black pepper, cocoa, and many other local foods. Not only that, but you will be guided through the farming process and will also get the chance to buy a few tasty souvenirs.
3. Get some adrenaline with parasailing
On the beach outside Manuel Antonio National Park, the Playa Espadilla Norte, you may go parasailing to get a spectacular view of the national park and its surroundings. The breeze will also greatly contribute to your experience!
You may book a tour right on the beach or work with local companies like Aguas Azules who offer transportation from and to hotels in Manuel Antonio.
4. Go on a catamaran cruise
Marine life is a big part of Costa Rica, and what better way of observing it than going on a catamaran cruise? Catamaran tours not only allow you to observe humpback whales or dolphins but also sometimes include snorkeling just outside Manuel Antonio National Park.
There are many companies you could book a catamaran cruise with. You may book a tour from the National Park’s website or go for the catamaran & snorkeling tours we at Best of Costa Rica offer to our clients.
5. Participate in whitewater rafting
The surroundings of Manuel Antonio are rich with a variety of whitewater rivers, starting from simpler class II & III rivers like Upper Savegre and ending with class V whitewater in some sections of the Naranjo River.
The easier whitewater tours are accessible to children and inexperienced rafters, while the more dangerous and thrilling ones will get the adrenaline going in more skilled boaters.
Whitewater rafting is included in our Costa Rica Natural Jewels comprehensive 11 days itinerary.
6. Visit Kids Saving the Rainforest Sanctuary
Kids Saving the Rainforest is a wildlife sanctuary based in Quepos not too far from Manuel Antonio. At the sanctuary operates a rescue center that rehabilitates over 100 animals annually. Those animals who cannot be released back into the wild are kept and taken care of in the sanctuary.
At the sanctuary, visitors are provided with insight into pet trade, human-wildlife interaction, and other topics concerning the relations between people and wildlife. After a tour at Kids Saving the Rainforest, you will know how to engage in ecologically responsible tourism and may start viewing wildlife from another angle.
7. Hop onto a zip line or an ATV
If you are an adventurous type, then there is an adventure park called MidWorld just minutes from Manuel Antonio. This adventure park offers a variety of activities to those who cannot live a day without something new and exciting.
Among the tours you could participate in in MidWorld are canopy, ATV, zip line tours. But if you are up to something more relaxed, then hiking and garden tours are also available.
8. Enjoy the views of Playa Biesanz
Playa Biesanz is a hidden gem of a beach in Manuel Antonio. Compared to the 4 main beaches near Manuel Antonio National Park, this beach is much less crowded since it’s not as easy to get to – to reach it, you will have to traverse a fairly rocky terrain.
The area is known for its high tides, so you will need to make sure that you go there when the waters are low. Once you are there, you will have the chance to relax in its waters that are renowned for its calm waves.
9. Grab the paddle and go kayaking
Whitewater rafting isn’t the only boating activity in Manuel Antonio.
At Playa Biesanz, there are points that are only accessible via a kayak. One of them is Biezans Bay, Manuel Antonio’s hidden treasure where one can try delicious local snacks or have a relaxing swim.
There are a variety of companies offering kayaking tours in Manuel Antonio. Among them is the sea kayaking & snorkeling tour that we at Best of Costa Rica offer at a price of $50 per person, which includes lunch and transportation from your hotel in Manuel Antonio.
10. Stay awake for a jungle night tour
Finally, you may want to take a unique jungle night tour just outside Manuel Antonio National Park. Things can get spooky at night, but that’s a big part of the charm of this tour.
During this 2-hour tour, you will have the chance to catch a glimpse of shy snakes, tree frogs, insects, and other local creatures that come out at night. This tour includes flashlights, a certified tour guide, and round-trip transportation from and to Quepos and Manuel Antonio hotels for a worry-free experience.
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