4 Reasons To Visit The Caribbean Side Of Costa Rica
By Leah Freeman-Haskin
The Caribbean side of Costa Rica, or the Limón Province, is sometimes perceived in a negative light due to racism toward Ticos of Jamaican descent. For tourists, there is often the fear of petty theft and crime, causing more people to travel to the Pacific Coast side of the country and the central valley. But with some of the most beautiful beaches in the world and often more affordable travel rates, it is a side of the country that shouldn’t be missed. Here are some of the top reasons to visit the laid-back Caribbean side of Costa Rica.
Abundance of Wildlife
For nature lovers, Tortuguero National Park offers 47,000 acres of some of the most diverse and exotic displays of wildlife in the country. It’s best to tour the park by boat to experience some of the turtle nesting grounds and biodiversity within the canals, lagoon, and rivers.
On the Caribbean coast, you will hear Creole as well as Spanish spoken throughout the region. Overall, there is an Afro-Caribbean culture here that you won’t find in other parts of the country. When visiting, be sure to try the traditional spicy seafood gumbo known as rondón for a truly authentic feast.
As you can imagine, the beaches that stretch along the Caribbean shoreline are some of the most beautiful in all of Central America. With crystal waters, charming beach towns, dirt roads, and a laid-back Caribbean vibe, you will certainly get your taste of the beach life. Head to Manzanillo for some of the best snorkeling in Costa Rica, thanks to its proximity to a coral reef just off the shore.
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca and other beachside towns along the Caribbean side offer an abundant nightlife including live music, dancing (sometimes with fire), and cheap happy hours just about every night of the week.