This adventure is one of my favorite on earth. Attack this adventure like a buddhist. Define the goal (Goal= reach Punta Mona) and focus on the process (Process=Getting there). It’s not the destination, it’s the journey. Along the way enjoy great surf, great parties, afro-caribbean culture, jungle hikes, heaps of wildlife and real adventure. If your looking for the quintessential “The Beach” type adventure this is for you. Punta Mona is an awesome, isolated jungle community.
- Fly into San Jose, Costa Rica. Either take a taxi to a hostel or book a hotel for the night that has airport pick ups. San Jose is a interesting place full of sin and booze. Avoid this if you can.
- Take a bus to Puerto Viejo. To get to Puerto Viejo you must take a bus towards Limon. It’s a stunning bus ride and an adventure in itself.
- Stay at Rockin J’s Hammock Hotel in Puerto Viejo. Travel east or west along the beach and you have great surf spots. Rockin J’s is walking distance from the Salsa Brava (Salsa Brava is dangerous so don’t get too confident). Stay here a few nights. Drink a lot and get all the partying out of your system. J’s does all sorts of fun stuff. This is the greatest hostel in the history of hostels, or greatness.
- Wake up early and hitchhike down south to Manzanillo (take a bus if all else fails). This is the most southern town on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica. Have a smoothie and a feed at Maxi’s Restaurant.
- Once you get to Manzanillo, choose between these 2 Options:
- Find “Baco”: Baco is a local ledgend. He runs the recycling program for the area so almost everyone knows him. Baco can take you to Punta Monaon his boat. It costs about $50 a person. This is a stunning boat ride along the beautiful undeveloped coast.(or)
- Hike south: This involves bush tramping through the deep forests of Costa Rica. The hike takes about 2-3 hours depending on the conditions. Encounter wildlife like big spiders, howler monkeys, wild pigs, enormous ant hills and whatever else the jungle can throw at you. I love this hike. It’s best to go bare foot. The deep mud will ruin your shoes and get you stuck (it will pull gum boots straight off your feet). Punta Mona is on the coast so as long as you keep the ocean on your left you won’t get lost. This is one of those real adventures, be careful, be smart.
- Arrive at Punta Monaand spend a few days
- This place is could be described as “hippie;” but have no fear. There is so much interesting stuff to learn and experience. You will be fed some really delicious food and you will learn a whole heap of new skills. Learn about sugar cane, miracle fruit (makes sour things taste sweet), banana trees (harvest by cutting down the tree), old spice, cinnamon, and a thousand other exotic unbelievable life. There is great diving and the surf is pretty good down the beach.
It’s important to check in with Punta Mona (puntamona.org) before you hike out there. Confirm that they have a place for you to stay!
Best of Luck!