Manuel Antonio: A Family Destination
Every town has a character. Every town has a personality–even if its eclectic. It’s important to know the character of your family destination in Costa Rica. And surprisingly, Costa Rica is one of the most eclectic in Latin America.
Even so– everywhere in Costa Rica is beautiful, in my experience. From Costa Rica’s national parks to the most labyrinthine barrios of the central valley, from the Caribbean beaches in Cahuita to the Pacific beaches in Manuel Antonio, from the lowland tropical dry forests of Guanacaste to the dripping cloud forests of the Talamanca mountains. It just depends on what you’d like to do with the limited time you have in this beautiful country.
Let’s face it–some people come here to party and go crazy. There are destinations along the coast which cater to this group–aka Jaco. (oops) But the majority of visitors to the country are families, couples and friends who have come to explore Costa Rica’s thriving natural beauty, experience it through a variety of mediums, and partake of its warm, inviting culture. Parents seek to give their children a unique cultural experience, and connect them with nature in the process–but in lieu of having beautiful beaches.
As a father of two, beautiful, little girls–I’m always looking for a place that is not only safe, but also fun and enriching. I wouldn’t live here if I didn’t think Manuel Antonio was the perfect place to raise them. And I wouldn’t recommend it as a family destination if I didn’t feel this way. But even in the short-term, Manuel Antonio has a lot to offer for families.
- Manuel Antonio National Park: National parks inherently draw more open, down-to-earth people. Even better when it has the best beaches in Manuel Antonio!
- Monkeys: Let’s face it–monkeys are cool. They’re everywhere in Manuel Antonio!
- Rainforest: The lungs of the Earth, the living rainforest is so rife with life there is a perpetual buzz. To experience it is to understand its importance. Costa Rica is a nature lover’s paradise!
- Boutique Destination: Manuel Antonio is spread out over 5 miles of forested hills, sparsely developed, and dotted with fantastic restaurants with Pacific Ocean views, boutique hotels and vacation rental homes. It makes for great exploration!
Ocean & Adventure Tours: What you ant, baby I got it: canopy tours, catamaran tours,national park tours, waterfall tours, ATV tours, mangrove tours, canyoneering, scuba diving, snorkeling, surfing, parasailing, jet skiing, sailing, deep sea fishing, hiking, beach combing, horseback riding, and of course, skiing. Manuel Antonio is an active destination–with something for everyone.
Fun Family Venues: There are great family venues in Manuel Antonio, from good food, dancing & live music at the Barba Roja, to the Si Como No butterfly and crocodile farm, to breakfast at the Mariposa–one of the ‘1000 places to visit before you die’. The kids will never get bored!
Safe: By all standards, Manuel Antonio is a safe destination both within Costa Rica as well as the Americas.
Tire Them Out: The best part is that your kids will wear themselves out during the day from all of the activity and go to bed early so that you can slip out to Salsipuedes for drinks and tapas.
So bring the family! Bring the kids! When you return, you’ll rave about Costa Rica’s pristine beaches and natural beauty, and your kids will be telling stories at school of their canopy tour, or their first time surfing, or the monkey that stole their banana. Manuel Antonio is a garden for blossoming memories!
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