The rain forest within the Monteverde Cloud Forest in Costa Rica

Cruise to Puntarenas, Costa Rica

Situated on the long Nicoya Peninsula, Puntarenas is a great jumping-off point for the eco-adventures that have made Costa Rica famous. Trek lush rainforests in San Luis Park. Discover tropical flora and fauna in Pos Volcano National Park, and shower under Costa Rica's tallest waterfall at Pura Vida Gardens and Waterfalls. Looking for oceanside adventure? Take the short drive from Puntarenas to the Nicoya Peninsula, where there's a wide array of beaches — relax on family-friendly Playa Guiones, or check out dramatic Playa Ostional, with its volcanic black sands and vibrant sea turtle population. Puntarenas cruises give you access to Playa Tamarindo, where you can find some of the best surf and food in the country.
National Language Spanish
Currency Accepted Costa Rican Colón (CRC)

Things To Do in Puntarenas

Suspension bridge in a rainforest in Puntarenas, Costa Rica

Puntarenas, Costa Rica Suspension Bridge

High in the Clouds

High in the Clouds

Walk across four suspended bridges and along the treetops and the forest fog of San Luis Park. A local guide will take you through the dense tropical jungle and into a hummingbird garden to witness the beautiful birds as they fly rapidly among the trees.

Bag of coffee beans from Puntarenas, Costa Rica

Puntarenas, Costa Rica Coffee Beans

Coffee Culture

Coffee Culture

Tour the 640-acre Arabica coffee plantation of Espiritu Santo in the charming mountain town of Naranjo. Learn how beans are prepared for roasting while sipping on the delicious brew. The coffee produced here lands in Starbucks stores across the globe.

Traditional decorated ox cart in Puntarenas, Costa Rica

Puntarenas, Costa Rica Traditional Ox Cart

Folkloric Allure

After the coffee sampling, head to the nearby artisan town of Sarchi, famous for its arts and crafts and for making the colorful oxcarts, famous folkloric carriages and symbols of Costa Rican culture. Wooden rocking chairs and painted ceramics are also available and locally made.

Ethnic tropical cuisine, gallo pinto with rice and beans in Puntarenas, Costa Rica

Puntarenas, Costa Rica Gallo Pinto

Local Cuisine

Fill up for the day with a traditional Costa Rican breakfast of gallo pinto, a hearty combo of rice beans flavored with spices, cilantro and onions. Later on, order up casado, a plate-style combo of rice, beans, tortillas, fried plaintains and your protein of choice — celebrate the ocean and opt for grilled fish. During your Puntarenas cruise, stop by a street vendor for a tamal, the Costa Rican classic of cornmeal and garlic wrapped in a banana leaf.

Colorful souvenir batiks in Puntarenas, Costa Rica

Puntarenas, Costa Rica Colorful Batiks


For close-by shopping options, head straight to Paseo de los Turistas, a promenade with many craft shops selling everything from locally grown coffee to leather goods. If driving is not an issue, head to the village of Sarchi and pick your favorite oxcart as a souvenir. Cruise to Costa Rica to stop by a beachside vendor and pick up a batik, a colorful dyed cloth traditional to the area.

Insider's Tips
Insider's Tips
1 Take a historic train or a river cruise and witness the lesser-known side of Costa Rica's wildlife.
2 Save a few dollars on food and pop into a soda, a small local eatery, for an authentic casado plate.

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