The Manuel Antonio Park is a large protected area on the Pacific Coast of the Central American nation of Costa Rica. Measuring 1,983 hectares in size (7,650 square miles), Manuel Antonio National Park is the smallest national Park in Costa Rica but one of the most popular visitor destinations. It is estimated that more than 150,000 people visit the park every year, drawn to the spectacular ocean vistas, gorgeous beaches, and hiking trails through pristine rainforest. Manuel Antonio National Park is regularly featured on travel documentaries and was listed as one of the world’s 12 most beautiful national parks by Forbes magazine.
Although it is famous for its beaches, intimate coves, and ocean view, Manuel Antonio National Park also contains unspoiled tropical forests featuring lush foliage. The park also continues offshore to include coral reefs that serve as the home for a rich abundance of marine flora and fauna.
In order to accommodate the large number of visitors, the government of Costa Rica has created a number of marked hiking trails, including: Waterfall, Lookout, Beach Espadilla, Beach Manuel Antonio, Puerto Escondido (Hidden Point), Beaches Gemelas (Twin Beaches), and Congos that include restroom facilities, picnic areas, scenic overlooks, and plaques describing natural items of scientific interest. The Manuel Antonio National Park also has several restaurants and lodges to serve visitors.
Manuel Antonio National Park is located just south of the city of Quepos in Puntarenas Province and lies about 82 miles (132 km) from the capital of San Jose. The park was first established in 1972. Two beaches inside the park, Manuel Antonio Beach and Espadilla Sur, feature tidal pools and are popular for their snorkeling opportunities. Manuel Antonio Beach is connected to Espadilla Sur by a tombolo, a natural land bridge that provides a unique hiking experience. Although swimming is permitted offshore, visitors should be warned that dangerous riptides do occur and lifeguard service is limited.
Endless Olas Surf Camp
The Endless Olas Surf Camp is based in Dominical, Costa Rica on the outskirts of the Manuel Antonio National Park. With an expert team of local surf coaches, Endless Olas works with both beginner and experienced surfers to teach every aspect of surfing starting with basic surf mechanics and continuing to refining advanced surfing techniques.
Endless Olas also organizes tours of nearby activities like bird watching, hiking, zip lining, river canoeing, and horseback riding in and around the Manuel Antonio National Park.