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Puerto Viejo & Cahuita

Puerto ViejoThis beautiful beach town on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica has recently become a hit with tourists due to its cultural and natural richness, stunning white-sand beaches and the legendary Salsa Brava waves.  Known for its laidback attitude and Caribbean life style, Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica allows visitors to experience Costa Rica’s most exotic side.

Traditions are well established in Puerto Viejo, with a unique blend of Latin, Afro-Caribbean and Bribri indigenous cultures.  The ‘Rastafari’ culture has an important presence in the area, and many ‘Rastas’ sell handmade jewelry and other products along Puerto Viejo’s colorful roadside. This small port town is an ethnic wonder in itself. 

Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica has a lot to offer.  From world-class surfing, snorkeling and diving among the many reefs in the blue waters, to mountain biking, horseback riding and cultural visits to indigenous people.   Nearby Cahuita National Park and Gandoca-Manzanillo National Wildlife Refuge provides tourists with the opportunity to observe the area’s incredible wildlife, both of which are a short distance away.

Puerto Viejo is the center of activity between the smaller villages of Cahuita and Manzanillo.  The town has a wide variety of shops, bars, restaurants and accommodations dispersed all over the place.  Just south of Puerto Viejo, visitors will discover the amazing beaches of Playa Cocles, Playa Chiquita and Punta Uva, although the dirt road connecting the villages is often in poor shape.

Despite Puerto Viejo’s growing popularity, most roads to this town are in pretty poor condition, with the only paved road being the one from Limón to Manzanillo.  However, this gives Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica a distinctive and unique rustic touch.

Just as the rest of the coast, Puerto Viejo gets plenty of rain. Although the area’s climate is very unpredictable, some say that when the rest of Costa Rica is rainy, the southern Caribbean is dry.  The best time to visit Puerto Viejo is during February, March and April or August, September and October.

Other activities in the Puerto Viejo area

  • South Caribbean Music Festival:  Each March, there’s a month-long festival of concerts featuring local and national musical groups and artists.  Concerts are usually held on weekends at Playa Chiquita and surrounding areas.
  • Finca La Isla Botanical Gardens in Puerto Viejo:  A beautiful collection of native and imported tropical flora.  You’ll see medicinal, commercial and wild flowering plants, fruits, herbs and trees.  There’s also a nice rainforest trails that take you throughout the garden.
  • Green Iguana Conservation Tour: Down in Playa Chiquita, this educational tour shows the life, habits and current situation of endangered Iguanas.  The tour includes a walk around the huge natural area and an interesting video presentation.
  • Cacao Trails:  Puerto Viejo’s Cacao Trails feature many activities in one beautiful place - botanical gardens, a serpentarium, a series of trails and a small museum.  There’s also an open-air restaurant and a refreshing swimming pool. 

Need accommodation in Puerto Viejo. Visit our selection of hotels and let us help you with your Puerto Viejo vacation.

See selected Puerto Viejo accommodation

Almendros y Corales
Cariblue Hotel
Villas del Caribe

Travel Agencies, after hours & weekends:
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