Things to do in
Puntarenas Province

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Our most recommended things to do in Puntarenas Province

Manuel Antonio or Quepos: Manuel Antonio National Park Tour

1. Manuel Antonio or Quepos: Manuel Antonio National Park Tour

Discover Manuel Antonio National Park, a small biological island established in 1972 by the Costa Rican government to preserve its precious wildlife. Though Manuel Antonio National Park is the smallest park in the country, it’s also the most visited due to its charming combination of rain forests, beaches, coral reefs, and wildlife. After being picked up from your hotel by your excerpt driver-guide, get ready to explore a diverse range of fauna spanning 109 species of mammals and 184 birds. As you explore, look out for raccoons, coatis, agoutis, sloths, white-faced monkeys, howler monkeys, and the famous Titi monkey, an endangered subspecies unique to the park. Be led by your guide on a breathtaking walking tour through the jungle and experience the secrets and wonders of this amazing ecosystem. See kingfishers, the yellow crowned night heron and many more bird species. Benefit from assistance taking high-quality nature photos using your own digital camera combined with professional telescopes provided on the tour.

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Boat Transfer between Monteverde and La Fortuna

2. Boat Transfer between Monteverde and La Fortuna

Add a little adventure to your transportation needs between Monteverde and La Fortuna and avail of a transfer that includes an informative boat tour across Lake Arenal. Get spectacular views of Arenal Volcano and the cloud forests of Monteverde as you travel by van and boat. Choose from a morning or afternoon departure in either direction to suit your schedule, and relax in the knowledge that your luggage will be taken care of on every step of the journey. Depart La Fortuna and travel to Lake Arenal by van. Then, take a 30-minute boat ride to the town of Río Chiquito before continuing to Monteverde by van. For departures from Monteverde, travel to Lake Arenal by van. Cross Lake Arenal on an enlightening 30-minute boat ride to the earthen dam, and then continue to La Fortuna by van for drop off at your hotel.

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Quepos: Horseback Riding to the Shaman Waterfalls

3. Quepos: Horseback Riding to the Shaman Waterfalls

During the 40-minute drive to the town, your guide will share interesting information about the history of Quepos and the area in general. Once you reach Londres, you will set foot on a picturesque property, where you can find restrooms, stables, a corral and an open-air waiting area. You will receive riding instruction, safety tips, and also get some practice time before heading out to explore the Costa Rican rainforest. This tour allows you to learn the exotic secrets that lie within primary rainforests, riding at a maximum altitude of 600 meters (1900 ft). The ride lasts about 2.5-hours (round-trip) and will be highlighted by amazing valley views, verdant vegetation and numerous wildlife species such as birds and reptiles. At the end of the trail there is the beautiful Shaman waterfall where you will be able to rest for about 30 minutes. Lie on the grass or take a swim, or even both! After the break, you will return riding the same trail. At the end of your horseback riding tour you will be taken back to the riding center, where you will enjoy a delicious lunch made with local ingredients and enjoy a little conversation before heading back to your hotel.

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Costa Rica: 2-Hour Chocolate Experience and Plantation Tour

4. Costa Rica: 2-Hour Chocolate Experience and Plantation Tour

Begin your tour with a short 30-minute walk and be introduced to the Central Pacific transitional forest. During the walk observe the amazing flora and fauna. Afterward, begin your chocolate experience and discover the international cocoa collection of the Central Pacific. Learn about the different varieties of cocoa, as well as its ancestral history, and cocoa's impact on the world economy. Try the actual cocoa fruit and take part in the cocoa production process. Delish in different types of chocolate and mix it with tropical fruits. Also learn about two of the most traditional agricultural products of Costa Rica, sugar cane and coffee. Have direct contact with the plants and hear about the natural history of these crops. At the end of the experience, there will be organic chocolate bars with different cocoa percentages as well as other cocoa products for purchase.

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From Manuel Antonio: 4-Hour Mangrove Boat Tour

5. From Manuel Antonio: 4-Hour Mangrove Boat Tour

The mangrove forest is one of the most vital and astounding ecosystems in the world. Damas Island, located just 10 minutes from Manuel Antonio is currently one of the most important remaining mangroves in Costa Rica. Covering thousands of acres of protected forest, this amazing biodiversity is home to a large number of birds, reptiles, mammals, and insects. Our experienced guides will take you on an unforgettable boat tour through the channels of the mangrove forest, far away from civilization. You can discover an abundance of species native to the area such as white-faced monkeys, anteaters, boas, iguanas, birds and thousands of colorful crabs. Our boats have the capacity to hold 12 passengers and are fully equipped for your comfort and security.

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Costa Rica: Pacific Aerial Tram at Rainforest Adventures

6. Costa Rica: Pacific Aerial Tram at Rainforest Adventures

Experience the forest as never before at Rainforest Adventures in Jacó, Costa Rica. The aerial tram ride lasts one hour and twenty minutes of pure magic. Discover the real beauty of amazing Atlantic rainforest with an expert bilingual guide. The Aerial Tram has 18 gondolas that allow a maximum for 9 passengers including one bilingual (English/Spanish) naturalist guide. Upon advanced request there can be guide assistance in other languages as well. Explore all the different layers of the rainforest, from the floor to the treetops. The canopy is home to an enormous amount of flora and fauna. Eager to find light and space, many plants have colonized the treetops, turning them into small, independently functioning ecosystems.

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Manuel Antonio: Night Jungle Tour

7. Manuel Antonio: Night Jungle Tour

This rainforest night tour is operated in the amazing Rainmaker Park. Rainmaker is one of the most important and impressive rainforest ecosystems in Costa Rica, this is where the extinct harlequin frog reappeared and was rediscovered thus becoming an important field of research and scientific studies for herpetologists worldwide. This night walk takes about 2-hours to 2.5-hours and is led by a professional and expert certified guide. During the expedition you may see bats, Jesus Christ lizard, spiders, owls, high varieties of frogs, snakes and many interesting insects. You will use special equipment for the night and a flashlight for a better appreciation during the activity to help you see the jungle life more clearly.

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From San José: Monteverde Hanging Bridges Day Trip

8. From San José: Monteverde Hanging Bridges Day Trip

Your tour begins in the morning with pickup in the San José area. Then travel towards the northern part of the country on a very scenic drive, with great views of beautiful mountain ranges, local towns and farms, and the Pacific coast. On the way to Monteverde, enjoy multiple stops. Learn about local fruits at the largest fruit stand of the country. Explore a place where several monkeys are normally observed in the wild at a very close range. Photograph amazing landscapes from a lookout point. Once in Monteverde, savor a delicious lunch and then proceed to do the amazing hanging bridges tour in the cloud forest. Hike with your guide for two to three hours, admiring the beauties of this rare ecosystem and searching for the local wildlife, including monkeys, emerald toucans, coatimundis, and the rare resplendent quetzal, the most beautiful bird of Costa Rica. This hike is approximately 3km (1.9 miles) long and is mostly on flat terrain with a few mild climbs.  Late in the afternoon, return to your accommodation in San José or to your accommodation in central Monteverde. 

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Jaco: Zip Line and ATV Adventure Combo Tour

9. Jaco: Zip Line and ATV Adventure Combo Tour

The fun starts with a 15-minute tractor ride to the top of the mountain for the zip line portion of your adventure. Descend through the rainforest on a 2-hour course of 10 cables and 14 platforms, some with amazing panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean and Gulf of Nicoya. After the zip lining is complete, its time to get your adrenaline pumping with an ATV adventure to a waterfall. Start with a test drive on a specially designed private track. Once you are familiar with your vehicle, the fun continues on a muddy 2-hour ATV tour in more than 300 hectares of private property. Enjoy this safe adventure with your guide as your journey towards a pristine private waterfall for a short hike and swim before returning to the base. Alternatively, upgrade your tour by choosing the 3-hour ATV course. After the zip lining portion of the tour which remains the same, embark on a longer ATV adventure which includes a visit to some nearby waterfalls and a drive along a muddy coastline trail with numerous lookout points.

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Mega Mix Adventure Tour

10. Mega Mix Adventure Tour

This all-in-one combination of pure adrenaline is perfect for all thrill-seekers. After you had been equipped with all necessary equipment you will enjoy a short walk through the jungle to the starting point. All activities happen on site and will be lead by experienced guides. You can test your balance and try to overcome gravity during a high ropes course with 17 elements. Multiple logs, poles, and structures are waiting for you to overcome them. Then, fly like a bird on 8 zip line cables and enjoy panoramic mountain views. The route will take your breath away. You will also be able to have a go on a rappel and swing like Tarzan through the jungle. Finally, fly like Superman for 750m over the tree tops and admire unique views over the Gulf of Nicoya. Once you complete your scenic tour you will return to the company grounds where you can enjoy a typical Costa Rican lunch at the restaurant.

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Frequently asked questions about Puntarenas Province

What top attractions are a must-see in Puntarenas Province?

Other Sightseeing Options in Puntarenas Province

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What people are saying about Puntarenas Province

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 198 reviews

Animal lovers rejoice! Oscar was an outstanding guide. Our small group saw all three kinds of monkeys, countless reptiles, SLOTHS galore, and some of the coolest spiders, butterflies, and other insects I've ever seen. That's just the wildlife. The meals included with the trip are perfect. Begins with a desayuna tipica, then after you work up a real appetite in the national park, a protein-of-choice lunch, also in typical style, but served on the top floor of a gorgeous resort overlooking the beaches and the park you just enjoyed. Lovely to revisit all the animals from above while enjoying a hearty meal. Frequent stops along the way to see crocodiles and macaws and whenever the guide notices something worth checking out. Great way to see the central West Coast of Costa Rica and still make it back to your hotel by sunset.

We were picked up punctually at the next hotel on our Airbnb and dropped off in the center of Santa Elena, not far from the taxi rank. We used this tour because the travel time by bus / car was too long for us and would do it again. Unfortunately it rained heavily so that we couldn't enjoy the view at all.

This was an incredible experience. The guides were great — very reassuring and professional and we felt like we were in good hands the entire time. That being said, this experience is definitely not for those with a fear of heights or who don’t trust themselves physically.

Great experience for the family. We had a knowledgeable guide who fun and entertaining. Even the ride to the river was fun on the open air bus through the forest. The waterfall stop was also a highlight!

Our guide Watch gave us a great tour if the park and he was very enthusiastic. Great way to spend Christmas day!