Duration: at least one week
Budget: $ 75 per day
Stay: Belleh23 or Raggamuffin
Any local Tico (Costa Rican) will tell you that Montezuma, Costa Rica, is a must-visit destination to add to your itinerary. We agree with them! If you’re a person who loves the beach, natural beauty, and artsy towns, you’ll be in heaven here. The moment you step into Montezuma, you’ll see why people love it so much. This place is full of local shops and restaurants that attract visitors from around the world. You’ll find some fantastic waterfalls, beaches, and wildlife here. There is something for everyone in Montezuma.
Relaxation and boho vibes
Montezuma, Costa Rica, began as a small fishing village and is now a favorite among tourists on a budget. It is a bit off-the-beaten (and paved) path, but that’s why we love it. No matter where you go here, you’ll never be too far from the jungle.
- Sight Seeing 85% 85%
- Food 75% 75%
- Culture 80% 80%
- Activities 95% 95%
However, nature isn’t the only appeal to this small town. Montezuma has a distinct boho vibe, with veggie-friendly eateries, neo-Rastas, yoga classes, and live music to entertain locals and travelers alike. The setting for all of this is alongside the beautiful Pacific Ocean. With all these stunning landscapes surrounding you and exciting activities, you’ll find no shortage of things to do here.
Relax on the beach
Montezuma has countless beaches that attract visitors from around Costa Rica and the world. Playa Montezuma is the most popular beach in the area, just north of the town. It’s a great spot to sunbathe, swim, or take a walk. From Playa Montezuma, you can walk 15-20 minutes to see other beaches, secluded coves, and makeshift rock sculptures (cairns). You’ll even encounter a small waterfall!
Chase some waterfalls
You may want to ignore TLC’s advice on this one and go chasing waterfalls! There are some breathtaking ones just south of town. One of the most famous waterfalls is the Montezuma
Waterfalls, which include three cascades. Its tallest waterfall is the most easily accessible, but adventurous types can swim and trek to the other two. These waterfalls are a must-see attraction in Montezuma.
Enjoy the ocean at Isla Tortuga (Tortuga Island)
Snorkeling tours to Tortuga Island are one of the most popular activities for Montezuma visitors. Most tour operators include a boat ride to the island, a lunch BBQ, and snorkeling. The island is about an hour away from Montezuma, and the journey is part of the experience. Along the way, you’ll see incredible coastlines, beaches, and possibly some sea creatures!
Spend the day hiking at the Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve
Just south of Montezuma is the Cabo Blanco, Costa Rica’s first nature reserve, established in 1963. If you’re a hiking enthusiast looking for some exciting trails, this is your spot. Cabo Blanco is the epitome of sustainable travel, with carefully preserved tropical forests and stunning beaches to reward you at the end of your hike. This nature reserve has trails that are suitable for all skill levels.
Hang out in Montezuma
After spending some time in nature, hang out for a bit in town. Montezuma is a fascinating area with plenty of culture and intrigue. It’s not a place where you’ll see a lot of landmarks. Instead, it’s a destination where you can spend time with locals and other international travelers. There are plenty of locally-owned and sustainable shops, restaurants, and bars.
Get ready to travel Montezuma
How to get to Montezuma:
The best way to get to Montezuma is to rent a car in San José or catch a bus, then take the Puntarenas Ferry to the Nicoya Peninsula. Something to keep in mind is that the road to Montezuma is not well-paved, so you’ll need to get a four-by-four vehicle. It is possible to drive the entire route to Montezuma, but it’ll add several additional hours to your trip. Driving and taking the ferry will take about 4-5 hours, and a bus ride using the ferry will take about 7 hours
Best time to visit Montezuma:
There is little variation in Montezuma’s temperature. Most of the year has average highs in the 80s and average lows in the 70s. The hottest months are March and April. You’ll encounter the most rain between May and November, so winter is the best time to visit.
Safety in Montezuma:
Costa Rica is generally one of the safest destinations in Central America. Most of the hazards in Montezuma are related to nature. There are few paved areas, so closed-toed shoes are a must for many activities. It’s essential to be careful on trails after rainfall and avoid hiking at night. The most common crime in the area is theft, so ensure that you keep your valuables close, especially on buses. Stay vigilant of your surroundings, and do not leave drinks unattended.
Nightlife and entertainment:
Montezuma may be a small town, but it has a robust nightlife. There are plenty of beach bars during the day that turns into live music venues and dance clubs at night.
The tap water is by no means suitable to drink. Bring your Lifestraw Pro to avoid plastic pollution and keep your drinks cool.
Biggest challenge for the responsible traveler
Trash: bring your collapsable food container & Lifestraw Pro with you to avoid causing plastic pollution.
Packing Central America
Central America is super diverse and offers plenty of things to do. Check out our packing list, and get ready for an incredible adventure!
Find everything from eco-friendly toiletries to the only travel shoes you’ll ever want to exciting travel gadgets!
Places to visit in Costa Rica
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