Santa Teresa

Santa Teresa located on the southwestern Pacific coast of the Nicoya Peninsula. If coming from Cobano you will arrive at a crossroad on the Pacific, a left turn will take you to MalPais and a right turn will bring you into the village of Santa Teresa.

Long and wide open white beaches with unbelievable waves year round have made Santa Teresa a destination for the international surfer. In this day and age with internet and chat rooms the secret has gotten out that Santa Teresa is not only for surfers, an influx of newcomers have added their own styles and taste to the local scene.

Santa Teresa, Nicoya Peninsula, Costa RicaOnce a small fisherman’s village, surfers for years had found the waters off Santa Teresa to be great year round for surfing; from beginners to experts, the waves with off shore winds have provided fantastic breaks.

A small village with one main road that parallels’ the Pacific for several miles has brought many small hotels, bed and breakfast inns and well as an international variety of restaurants to the area. If one is looking for large hotels and all inclusive resorts, Santa Teresa is not the place. One will find unbelievable beaches and very affordable accommodations.

Santa Teresa Main Street, Nicoya Peninsula, Costa RicaOne need not be a surfer to enjoy the beauty of Santa Teresa, just relaxing on the beach, playing in the waves, exploring the many miles of white sand beaches to exploring the volcanic outcroppings extending into the ocean waves. The many small coves that line the beaches lined with tropical vegetation offer secluded getaways for relaxing and providing fantastic sunset views. For the water oriented traveler, one will find many opportunities to spend a day in the sun, from kite surfing to snorkeling and scuba diving being just a few. Hiking and Horseback riding along the beach or in the hills surrounding Santa Teresa offer fantastic spots for nature lovers. One will find canopy tours in neighboring MalPais as well as the Cabo Blanco Absolute Nature Reserve located at the southern end of Malpais beach very accessible. Day trips by ATV or car to neighboring Montezuma beach, Montezuma Waterfalls or just a ride up the coast to the small fishing village of Manzanillo will keep you busy for some time while on vacation in Santa Teresa.

Santa Teresa like the rest of the southern Nicoya Peninsula has two main seasons, the dry season ranging from around October to May and the wet season from the end of May to the beginning of October. The region being a little less humid than the rest of Costa Rica offers temperatures in the mid a 80’s during the day and with off shore winds coming from the Pacific will cool the night to a very comfortable temperature. With growth of Santa Teresa has also brought problems and arguments. The main road through Santa Teresa is unpaved and during the dry season can be very dusty, and conversely in the wet season a challenge to navigate. The locals feel the dirt roads are what have given Santa Teresa the charm of a small village and have limited the growth. With many foreigners moving in and opening restaurants and inns along the main road the dust has been a problem. Thus a very touchy subject in Santa Teresa.

Getting to Santa Teresa one has 2 options, flying into to Tambor airport with direct flights from San Jose and then taking a taxi to Santa Teresa. Or one can drive to Puntarenas and take the ferry to Parquera and then drive southeast through the town of Cobano and then onto Santa Teresa

Tortuga Island

Tortuga Island, Nicoya Peninsula, Costa RicaTortuga Island is located just off the southeastern shore of the Nicoya Peninsula in the Golfo de Nicoya. The island is named after the Spanish word for turtle. Tortuga Island is actually made up of 2 uninhabited islands that lie in front of the Curu Wildlife Refuge. Clear turquoise water, white powdery sand beaches lined with palm trees has made Tortuga Island one of the most thought after and popular destination in Costa Rica. The turquoise waters make for unforgettable scuba diving, snorkeling and just a lazy day of swimming.

The only way to reach the Tortuga Islands is by a tour, with most tourists coming from San Jose to the port city of Puntarenas and then taking one of many boats to the Islands, tours can also be arranged from Montezuma and Tambor. Since the only way to get to the Tortuga Islands is by tour groups, weekends and during the winter months can find the island paradise a little crowded. Every so often a cruise ship will pull into the waters of Tortuga Island. Tour operators will usually supply snorkeling equipment and will include a lunch on the beach.

Cascada West Of Montezuma

A 10 min walk along the beach to the west of Montezuma, one will come to a mystical rock garden. Locals and tourist alike have placed rocks and driftwood into this area giving it the mystical appeal. To the left of the rock garden you will find a small swimming hole with a entrance to a small valley with the river running through. A great hike with large boulders and a few waterfalls, nowhere in size of Cascada de Montezuma but the hike is worth the trip for the scenery and wildlife.




Cascada West of Montezuma, Costa Rica

Cascada de Montezuma

A 5 minute walk east from the center of Montezuma you will find the path leading to the Cascada de Montezuma. Not hard to find with being next to the Hotel Cascada and in front of Amor de Mar. Cascada de Montezuma is made up of three separate waterfalls, a short 2 min walk will bring you to the first low rumbling waterfall and swimming hole. 20 minutes farther up through the valley you will come to the main water fall and large swimming hole. There is a trail that will take you to the top of the large waterfall, there you will find 2 large swimming holes, one with a swinging rope as well as 1 more low waterfalls. The area of Cascade de Montezuma is filled with wildlife. The amount of water coming over the falls will vary depending on the season.
Cascada of Montezuma Costa Rica


Located on the southern shore of the Nicoya Peninsula is the seaside village of Montezuma. The village has a carefree laid back atmosphere which has attracted many young foreigners over the years. Montezuma has been found to be a great place to chill and enjoy the quiet tranquil atmosphere, with many local flavored shops and restaurants adding to this bohemian lifestyle. Backpackers and eco tourist have found the rock strewn beaches, rivers as well as the scenic waterfalls make this a must see destination in Costa Rica.

Montezuma is not the place for tourist looking to be pampered at an all inclusive resort. With a laid back atmosphere Montezuma has attracted the young and budget minded crowds. Many small bed and breakfast places as well as hotels offer a wide range of inexpensive rooms. The village offers no bank or post office, one would need to travel to the city of Cobano , about a 20 min.. drive inland depending on road conditions. The village seems to come alive as the sun sets, with many locals, expats as well as tourist walking the streets of Montezuma checking out the many restaurants and bars, handicrafts or just sitting, relaxing and people watching.
Main street Montezuma, Nicoya Peninsula, Costa RicaMontezuma is known for its beaches and climbing cliffs abundant with tropical vegetation just seeming to flow into the warm waters of the Pacific. Many small coves with rock outcroppings make this beach lover’s heaven with small palm tree lined white sand beaches to the long open expanse of Playa Grande. A short 20 min walk out of town will bring you to the Cascades of Montezuma, adventurers and eco tourist will find the 3 falls of Cascade of Montezuma some of the best and scenic in Costa Rica. Large pools of fresh water can find many tourist and locals swimming and jumping from the rocks adjoining the falls.

A 30 minute walk north along the shore leaving the village of Montezuma one will find a river with a mystic rook garden at the entrance of a canyon leading to another waterfall. Another 10 minutes up the coast will bring you to Playa Grande, a long palm tree lined beach sitting along the Nicolas Wesberg Absolute Reserve. Playa Grande is also a favorite among surfers and boogie boarders. For the more adventures, a 2 hour hike north along the coast will take you to El Chorro, a pictures waterfall just tumbling into the Pacific Ocean. Zip line tours as well as day trips for snorkeling and scuba diving on Tortuga Island can be arranged with one of the vendors in Montezuma. A 20 minute drive south from the village one will find the entrance to the Cabo Blanco Absolute Nature Reserve.

Reaching Montezuma by car one will need to take the ferry from Puntarenas to Parquera then to the city of Cabano and then Montezuma. If one wishes to fly there is the small airport in Tambor with daily flights to San Jose. A visit to Montezuma is definitely worth the trip