TRAVELLING TO PUNTARENAS
Are you planning on venturing out to a variety of places in Costa Rica, and are searching for the ideal base to begin? Or, are you planning to stay at a major centre and are seeking a colourful day trip? Regardless of your planned length of stay, Puntarenas is set up as the perfect centre of tourist activity for a day or a week. Whether you need an anchor to centre your activities and excursions throughout the country, or are simply looking for a unique day trip, Puntarenas caters to a variety of guests and itineraries.
Puntarenas is a unique place, situated on a narrow peninsula (no more than four blocks wide!), jetting out into the Nicoya Gulf. Travelling here is fairly easy from the capital of San Jose and is the perfect place to begin your adventures through Costa Rica. While many visitors pass through on day trips, it is possible to spend your entire vacation enjoying everything the region has to offer. If you do decide to spend the night, there are a number of smaller hotels and resorts available, along with locally run establishments.
Due to its geographical position, Puntarenas is a little hotter and drier than much of Costa Rica. Expect daytime temperatures to top 30C at almost all times of the year, and plan to hit the very dry season from December to April to almost guarantee a full sun vacation. With such impeccable weather, your vacation is bound to start off on the right foot.
Puntarenas is a popular cruise ship dock and has thus set up a colourful and vibrant market area surrounding the port. While things light up when a mega ship pulls up, this area is always hopping with activity and anticipation. The centre of Puntarenas’ tourism industry, head to the vibrant shops and markets surrounding the cruise docks for your best shopping and local deals. Since you aren’t limited by the schedule of a cruise ship, venture to the further reaches of the peninsula to see an even greater variety of commerce and culture.
While travelling to this unique place, whether for a day or for the week, it is necessary to try some of the local cuisine at the cafes and restaurants near the beach. Soaked in the scents of fresh seafood, these places call out to the hunger in every traveller to sample some of the local food. If you need to cool down, this region has a number of ice-based treats, usually sold locally out of small businesses or homes. For only a small cost, every visitor can have their own taste of Puntarenas.
When you have sampled enough of the people of Puntarenas, plan a natural adventure to Mangrove Forest, a natural area filled with diverse flora and fauna only a short distance from the main city. Whether you hire a local boat or take an official tour, an adventure to this forest is a must-do for every nature lover. A spectacular swampy paradise, Mangrove Forest is a unique journey through a dense waterlogged natural phenomenon.
Like so many places in Costa Rica, visitors are attracted by the waters surrounding Puntarenas almost as much as the land itself. Ideal for surfers, the Nicoya Gulf is a great mixture of shallow waters and cresting waves. Boaters and fishermen will be in paradise, with the area offering an incredible array of excursion options, many by local experts. The coastline around Puntarenas is punctured with a number of hidden bays and inlets, hidden from general view and the crowds of tourists populating the more accessible destinations. Some time on the water is a must in Puntarenas, whether you find yourself under or above the waves, on a boat or on your private beach.
It doesn’t matter if you find yourself travelling to Puntarenas for a diverse and colourful day trip, or prefer to anchor yourself in this destination for the rest of your Costa Rican adventure – this destination is ready to cater to diverse needs. The perfect gateway or excursion, Puntarenas remains popular with cruise ships for a reason. With such a vibrant local population and unique shopping experiences, this scenic city is a unique destination in Costa Rica.