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“Important arrival information.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Manuel Antonio Nature Park & Wildlife Refuge

Manuel Antonio Nature Park & Wildlife Refuge
Manuel Antonio National Park, Costa Rica
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Type: National Parks
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Attraction Details
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Lakeland, Florida
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“Important arrival information.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2012 via mobile

This is for those of you who are driving yourselves to the park. I used a GPS and it somehow stopped me well short of the park. Just follow the signs after getting to Quepos. Once you pass all the hotels that are going up and down the mountain you will be on a beach front street. This is where it gets interesting and get ready to go into sensory overload. There are literally bands of people that will stop you using every form possible trying to con you into either parking or to take a tour. They will actual get in front of your car and demand that you stop. They all have some kind of official looking shirt on and one guy even blew a police type whistle to get me to stop. They are all tour guides and not Park officials or Police. They will tell you all sorts of stories like "the park is full and you can't get in without a guide" to "there is no parking so you must park here". Its all a sales pitch. The trick is to just insist that you are going to the park entrance which is quite a ways from the start of the onslaught. I made the left to the park and since cars are not allowed in the park, yes, you have to pay to park. But I found a great space right in front of the gate and right next to the official ticket stand. $6 to park and $10 per person entrance fee. But It didn't end here. As I got out of the car the next onslaught of tour guides descended upon me. I almost had to fight them off with a stick. They were all very polite but damn it was rough. One guy even said that it is a 90 min walk to the beach. B.S. I bought my tickets and entered the park. Whew! Peace at last. The bottom line is 1. Get there early. They only allow 600 people in at a time. 2. You don't need a guide. The monkeys greeted me almost at the entrance. 3. It's a 15 min walk to the first beach. We pretty much toured the entire park in about three hours stopping to eat lunch and to take a dip in the water. 4. Make absolutely sure you bring a full lunch with extra water. There are no vendors of any type in the park. If you wait and try to buy something just outside the gate they will soak you for it. 5. Beware of Yogi Bear type raccoons. They will go out of there way to steal your "picinic basket". I was making sandwiches and almost got gang tackled by a group of them. If you are out on the beach, the monkeys will do the same. Other than that, it's awesome as already mentioned in other reviews.

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Quepos, Costa Rica
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Hire a Naturalist”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2012

We hired a naturalist guide for our first trip and he pointed out many plants and animals we would have missed. Great value for the money.

Visited November 2012
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Indiana
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“What an Opportunity!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2012

If you would like to see monkeys, iguanas, sloths, crabs, amazing spiders, sleeping frogs, awesome flora and fauna and a morning that is filled with surprises then take the tour at Manual Antonio National Park. Not only do you get to see all that, at the end of the 2 hour hike, you walk onto the most beautiful beaches. The ending is perfect for such a warm day. But I don't think I could find a better, easier hike to take. I loved it!

Visited November 2012
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Denver, Colorado
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
11 attraction reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Beautiful Nature and Beach”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2012

Manuel Antonio is a great area to visit or a few days, just a short 2-3 hour drive from San Jose. The National Park is closed on Mondays so keep that in mind if you want to visit the grounds for a nature guided tour or on your own. There is a fee to enter the park. The earlier you go, the better chance you have to see wildlife in the park. The beach is nice but can be rough at times. Very lush and green around the area. Lots of restaurants but it can be very dead during their slow season in August. Very busy between December and March (dry season). Overall I recommend it as a must see in the southwestern area of Costa Rica.

Visited August 2012
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vias
1 review
“Going around costa rica”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2012

This country is just beautiful and deserve its name.
Manuel Antonio Nature park is an amazing place worth visiting full of animals and luxuriant vegetation.

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