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“Best beach here”

Playa Manuel Antonio
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Manuel Antonio National Park Hiking Tour
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Manuel Antonio National Park
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Manuel Antonio National Park
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: One of Costa Rica's most popular beaches, Playa Manuel Antonio frequently hosts parties and festivals, and it is an ideal destination for avid surfers.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Seattle, Washington
Level 6 Contributor
115 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Best beach here”
Reviewed March 26, 2013

You have to pay 10$ a person and hike in from the entrance of the park but well worth it when you realize it is a calm beach that the water is like a bath tub. No waves. It does get busy in the early morning when the massive amount of tour guides bring their groups in for a rest but they are quick to leave.

Visited March 2013
1 Thank P0LL0RIC0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Quepos, Costa Rica
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“paradise??? not so much”
Reviewed March 26, 2013

Recently, on a couples trip in March 2012...
It was our second day...my husband and I were riding the bus to Manuel Antonio from our hotel...
Someone caused a diversion and my husband´s wallet was stolen...
Some of the lovely beach vendors tried to help to no avail...it was gone...along with most of his ID and credit cards...
After a frantic trip into town to find a bank and report the card stolen...the staff at the hotel helped us out with the telephone to report our cards stolen...
Luckily I had back-up credit cards and debit cards...we would have been in trouble without...
Sadly, it was a terrible way to start our holidays...fortunately there was only $20 in cash...
While Costa Rica is a beautiful country with special people...it was shameful and bad for tourism...I guess that kind of thing can happen anywhere...it´s too bad...

Visited April 2012
Thank Alinor777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Knowlton, Quebec, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Get a tour guide. Worth the money”
Reviewed March 26, 2013

We visited Manuel Antonio Park in late February with our daughters (6 & 8). We took the "easy" trail and paid for a tour guide (shared with 4 others). It was a busy day, but that didn't really bother us, we were looking for a fun outing and some animal sightings, not a secluded hike. The guide lugs around a special scope on a tripod and knows where to find wildlife. He was full of information and very accommodating to our kids (lowering tripod enough for them to see, answering questions etc.). It was a fun 2-hour walk ending at a beautiful beach (warning, the waves can be strong at times). A nice morning outing.

BTW, I'm rating the park a 5 because we saw 2 sloths - my lifelong dream; if we hadn't I would have rated it a 4 ;)

Food available: Water and food are available outside the park entrance - stock up before you go in!!
Wheelchair access: they allow cars with disabled stickers to drive along the easy trail; you can also easily take a stroller on this trail

Visited February 2013
Thank Rhonda S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“A Slight Disappointment”
Reviewed March 25, 2013

Overall, a slight disappointment. I'm not sure why Forbes Magazine ranked this one of the most beautiful national parks in the world. (Stick to finance). Very crowded (though we were there on a weekend), but the beaches were beautiful. I just didn't think THAT beautiful to warrant a special trip. The hikes are nothing special. The white face monkeys seem to mostly congregate around the trash can area between the two beaches. The area outside the park is very commercialized and sort of taints the experience, too.

If you do go, just lower your expectations. Get there early in the morning, hike around, go hang out at the least crowded beach (Escondido, I believe) then leave and head onto your next destination in Costa Rica.

Visited March 2013
1 Thank RandyBernard
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amherst, MA
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Beautiful place, great wildlife”
Reviewed March 25, 2013

The park is beautiful and well maintained. The wildlife is easy to spot and fun to observe. With that recommendation i will offer some advice to help yo to prepare.
1. The park is not large. There is a limit to the number admitted on any day in order to protect the animals and the environment. So plan your visit for the morning.
2, There is no parking lot for the park so you will need to use one of the private lots outside of the park.
3. Guides will urge you to hire their services. If your goal is to see monkeys, other animals and the park itself, a guide isn't needed. If your really want to learn about what you're seeing, then you may want to consider joining with a guided group. The beaches within the park are wonderful so plan to spend time and enjoy the day.
4. If the only reason to go is for the beach or the daily quota is met when you get there, there is a free public beach just before the park. At that beach you will find vendors to rent umbrellas and chairs, and to offer food and drinks.

Visited February 2013
Thank Amherst_Mass
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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