"Caribbean beach"

Manzanillo is a small coastal town located in the province of Limón on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica. Although relatively close to Puerto Viejo, Manzanillo is a town of its own. The town has a laid-back atmosphere and is perfect for travelers looking for a quiet and peaceful getaway. If you plan to visit Manzanillo you should definitely also plan to explore nearby Puerto Viejo and its beaches.

Manzanillo has a rich cultural history. The area was once home to several indigenous tribes, including the Bribrí and Cabécar peoples and is now a cultural melting pot of indigenous, Caribbean, and latino heritage.

What can you do in Manzanillo?
Besides relaxing in the town and its beach, one of the main attractions of Manzanillo is the Gandoca-Manzanillo wildlife refuge.

The Gandoca-Manzanillo park is a protected wildlife refuge located on the outskirts of the town. The park covers an area of approximately 4,000 acres and is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna. The park has several hiking trails that offer visitors the opportunity to explore the park’s natural beauty, including its beaches, mangrove swamps, and rainforest. Also, one of the park’s main attractions is its coral reef, which is considered one of the best-preserved coral reefs in the country. Visitors can take a guided snorkeling tour to explore the reef and its abundant marine life, including colorful tropical fish, sea turtles, and starfish.

Local’s tip:
Plan a trip to visit both Manzanillo and Puerto Viejo. Manzanillo is chill and beautiful but there is not much to do for a longer stay, so visiting neighboring Puerto Viejo and the surrounding beaches including Punta Uva, Playa Chiquita, and Cocles makes for a very fun and complete trip!


Plan your visit

How to get there:
To get to Manzanillo you can either drive from San Jose, which is a journey of around 5 to 7 hours depending heavily on traffic and weather conditions, or take a bus. Buses going to Manzanillo only leave from San Jose. The bus options are extremely limited since they only depart one time per day and only three days per week. In this case an alternative is to travel to Puerto Viejo which has way more options and then take a taxi to Manzanillo.

Bus options from San Jose:
The buses from San Jose are managed by Mepe and leave from Terminal Mepe in the heart of San Jose. Tel.: 2257-8129. The price for a one way ticket is $15 USD and can only be bought in person at the bus terminal. The journey takes 5 hours.

Departure time options from San Jose: Only Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at 12pm
Return time options from Manzanillo: Saturday, Sunday, and Monday at 7:30am



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