Puntarenas is an hour and a half away from San José, making it a popular destination for central valley people. Tourism is an important activity in Puntarenas province, but also fishing, as well as agriculture and cattle raising.
In the city of Puntarenas, the Paseo de los Turistas is a point of reference for its restaurants. To the south of Puntarenas stretches 10.5 miles of beaches, where there are from luxury resorts to bed and breakfasts, so money is no problem here.
Here, on the Pacific coast, is Isla San Lucas, a jail that operated for more than 100 years, between 1873 and 1991. Now, the place is a sample of the history of the prison, where visitors can see the inhumane and torture conditions that faced the prisoners.
If you accept my recommendation, Manuel Antonio National Park has some of the most beautiful beaches of Puntarenas. White-sand, emerald green forests and diverse wildlife make this park a beloved place.
Moreover, there’s a shoreline in Puntarenas that is an icon for surfers, Jaco beach, that has an active atmosphere due to the variety of restaurants, stores, hotels, and available activities.
In Puntarenas, there are other protected areas such as Carara biological reserve. Carara means “river of lizards” in Huetar indigenous language. It is a great place for birdwatching. Also is Corcovado National Park, the largest park in Costa Rica, the ideal place for environmental lovers who want great experiences. In Corcovado, there are 140 species of mammals, 400 bird species, 116 amphibian species, 40 species of fish, 6,000 species of insects, 220 species of butterflies, and 500 tree species. Also, visitors can enjoy of Corcovado Lake and La Llorona Waterfall.
In the same way, Caño Island Biological Reserve is a place ideal for hiking, diving/snorkeling and kayaking. The island protects relics from pre-Columbian times, including the spherical stones, and many coral reefs.
In this region, south of Puntarenas, there are extraordinary beaches like Drake Bay, where swimming, scuba diving, birdwatching, sport fishing, and kayaking are just a few of the available options.