Have a unique and authentic experience when you plan your next vacation; a Costa Rica off the beaten path itinerary is the perfect way to see a different side of Costa Rica. Tell the most original stories when you mention the cities even the seasoned travellers in your group haven't been to. The best off the beaten path Costa Rica destinations offer beautiful views, interesting sites, and welcoming hosts. Some are a challenge to get to, while others are just around the corner from main travel routes, but all are worthy of your time.
You can explore Costa Rica's Caribbean-Creole roots (and cuisine) when you the village of Cahuita. Avoid the crowds whilst enjoying an outdoor adventure in Guanacaste's Tenorio Volcano region. In Sarchí, you can do incredible shopping as you peruse the town's handicrafts. There are plenty of things to do in Costa Rica off the beaten path, so it's still possible to design any kind of vacation you want — from romantic getaway to rugged adventure. The best part about Costa Rica off the beaten path vacations? Because these locations are outside of the usual tourist zones, you may save a little money without sacrificing your vacation experience.
#1: Ocean Views, Huge Beaches, No Crowds...That's Right We're Talking About Uvita
Uvita has a truly serene stretch of beach that invites you to dive into Costa Rica's incredible Southern Pacific coastline. If you want to see some of the country's rarest wildlife, go just a little ways off the beaten path to this coastal eden.
This remote beach is one of the top places for seeing humpback whales and Olive Ridley Sea Turtles. Year-round, you can go on a boating tour to see dolphins or take a sport fishing tour. Make your way to one of the smaller offshore islands (like Ballena Island) to get even further from typical beach attractions.
Guests have their choice of Ocean view villas or jungle lodges. Either way, Uvita accommodations promise stunning sunsets and glorious views.
Uvita is south of Manuel Antonio National Park and, home to a famous sandbar that's shaped exactly like a whale's tale. This beach is a scenic reminder of why Costa Rica's sparkling waters are such an important haven for marine animals.
#2: Be In The Know — Visit The Beach That's The Hidden Gem of Nosara
How could anyone miss this? Pristine white-sand beaches. Incredible surfing. Delicious seafood and tropical fruits. Friendly locals. How is a place like this off Costa Rica's beaten path? The unassuming town of Nosara holds a beautiful secret. The city itself might not entice you to spend your vacation there, but the nearby beach hamlet of Guiones will!
You'll emerge from Nosara to be greeted by pristine white-sand beaches, excellent surf waves, and luxurious accommodations to take in all of this natural beauty. Within this little gem, you can kayak across sapphire waters, view marine life on snorkeling excursions, reel in the catch of the day on a sport fishing excursion, or simply bask in warm sunlight.
Nosara's Guiones Beach tends to cater to those seeking a luxurious, yet down to Earth, beach getaway, so there are plenty of opportunities to indulge in fine cuisine, yoga resorts, and deluxe amenities. The thriving expat community might encourage you to stay, or at least add this locale to your roster if you're a digital nomad. The moral of the story? Travel is an adventure, and going off the beaten path in Costa Rica is full of rewards.
#3: Add Some 'Caribbean Spice' to Your Getaway — Visit Cahuita!
Experience Costa Rica's Caribbean culture in Cahuita, a laidback village where bikes are the main mode of transportation. Try some Caribbean spice at the small selection of local restaurants and bars.
Cahuita is right on the coast, and nearby you can visit the black sand beach of Playa Negra. You can also find a white sand beach inside the Cahuita National Park. For snorkeling, explore the coral reef that grows between the two beaches. Because Cahuita isn't as large as nearby Puerto Viejo, it's easier to find pristine, calm beaches. You'll actually see the sand instead a sea of umbrellas and beach blankets.
From the village, it's a short distance from Cahuita National Park, a free wildlife reserve. Take nature walks on paths that lead from the rainforest to the ocean. Along the way, you'll have the best chance of seeing capuchin monkeys and sloths.
Cahuita is a quintessential beach town in Costa Rica, minus the crowds. It's also a place where you can straight go from the sand to a local restaurant — casual, friendly businesses are used to seeing sandy feet.