"puntarenas lighthouse"

Puntarenas is a coastal city located on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica. It is the capital city of the Puntarenas Province and although the city is not so popular among international travelers it is a good spot to explore other attractions such as the nearby islands. Puntarenas or “El Puerto” as Costa Ricans call it is also a great place to experience authentic CostaRican culture. Puntarenas is also a required stop if you’r visiting the tip of the Nicoya peninsula and its beach towns including Santa Teresa, Malpais, and Montezuma.

Here are some things to do in Puntarenas:
Take a stroll through the “Paseo de los Turistas” which is a scenic beachfront street. The street is lined with restaurants, bars and booths selling beach products, crafts and a wide variety of local food. If your into food you must try the Churchill which is a local dessert that is a blend between a granizado and ice cream. The “Paseo de los Turistas” is also the perfect place to watch the sunset.

Take a boat tour: Puntarenas is a popular starting point for boat tours to nearby islands and attractions such as Tortuga Island and San Lucas island. Tortuga island is a beautiful scenic island perfect for snorkeling and relaxing. The beach is frequently visited by daily boat tours that take tourists to the island to spend the day. On the other hand, San Lucas island is an attraction famous for serving as a prison for many years until 1991. It became a national park in 2020.


Plan your visit

How to get there:
Since Puntarenas is a capital city there are a ton of options to travel to it. Besides driving, there are many bus routes coming from different cities and towns across Costa Rica including San Jose, Liberia, Orotina, Monteverde, Jaco, and Quepos. Thanks to this, you can easily visit Puntarenas in bus from several other popular beach destinations in the Pacific coast like Jaco beach and Manuel Antonio.

Bus options from San Jose:
The buses from San Jose are managed by Empresarios Unidos de Puntarenas. Tel.: 2222-9840. The price for a one way ticket is $5 USD. The journey takes only 2 hours and 30 minutes.

Departure time options from San Jose: Every hour from 6am to 7pm.
Return time options from Puntarenas: Every hour from 4am to 7pm.



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