We have chosen the amazing and remote Osa Peninsula as our base in Costa Rica. Believe us, we don't make our decisions lightly - The Osa is magical. Truly one of the most spectacular tropical environments in the world, this unique location is the best place to experience what Costa Rica has to offer. With vast rainforests that shelter Costa Rica's largest remaining population of jaguars and tapirs, the Osa is the gateway to the Golfo Dulce, a pristine marine paradise teeming with sea life. We will explore it all. Venture under the forest canopy, SUP the dazzling waters of the gulf, and just chill on the beach.
Corcovado Beach Lodge is the best kept secret in the Osa. The lodge has multiple cabanas that fit different size parties. We can customize our group to private cabana of 1 or 2, group of 3, group of 5 or group of 7. Located right on the water, we can launch our boards within steps of the lodge. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served on property with our private chef. AC is included in each of the lodge rooms and there's one bathroom per lodge.
From the Osa Beach House, there are a number of paddles that we can do.
Mangrove Tour – during mid or high tide, we can go explore the mangroves. There’s is a wide estuary between one of the islands and the main land. The estuary comes from one of the winding rivers of the Osa and meets the golf. The water is partially fresh water and partially salt water and can be very clear during mid day. Jungle wildlife viewing is amazing in the mangroves during dawn and dust.
Gulf Tour – Golfo Dulce is x miles wide by x miles long. It is one of the deepest golfs in North and Central America. We can explore the Golf Coast towards the pacific for x miles. There are numerous beaches on the way. Just a mile from the beach, we have spotted two different kinds of dolphins and whales in the golf.
Boat Tour – We have access to a tug boat as well as a catamaran that can take us to various parts of the golf and pacific coast. Boat tours are more flexible and convenient than driving with our boards on a van on dirt roads. Our boats can take as many as 12 boards and have snorkeling gear on board. We will do two boat trips during the week.
Snorkeling – Snorkeling is part of the boat tours. Our boats have snorkel gear but it’s not guaranteed that you’ll have the right size flippers or snorkels goggles. If you like snorkeling as much as me, you should bring your own equipment.
Yoga & SUP Yoga– We always have SUP yoga teachers on our trips, so organizing SUP yoga and Yoga classes are super easy. There are many properties in the area that are dedicated to yoga so we can also go attend a class.
Jungle Walk and Waterfall Hike– Just 45 minutes drive from the Osa Beach House is the national park of Corcovado. We can do an one hour walk on the edge of the park and see just as much wildlife as you can see inside of the park. The beach walk is amazing too with almost no one on the beach. On the way to the jungle we’ll stop by several beaches and cafes. On our way back from the jungle, we’ll take a one hour hike into the mountains to explore a waterfall. The fresh water will wash away the salt and sweat.
Friday Night Party – We usually go to a local favorite bar/restaurant near all the yoga lodges for Friday night festivities. The bar serves organic and local foods and delicious drinks. DJ music goes late into the night. All the local artisans are there as well if you’re looking for gifts.
Getting to the Osa is easier than ever – although it is still a longer trek than other locations in Costa Rica. The reward is that there are hardly any crowds in the area, it is truly a wilderness experience with modern amenities.
Flight to San Jose- There are daily flights from the bay area to the capital of Costa Rica – San Jose. It usually take between 5 and 7 hours to get there depending on your flight. Purchase your flight early and you reap the reward of not having to spend the whole day traveling and stopping at 3 different layovers.
San Jose Airport -Once you get to San Jose, if your flight is earlier in the day you can book a one-hour jumper flight directly to Puerto Jimenez. If you’re like me and like to take it slow or your flight arrives later in the day you can book a local hotel next to airport. Then take a flight to Puerto Jimenez the next day. Uber is very prevalent and cheap in San Jose, pick up is available at the airport. The official red taxis are a little more expensive but if you’re a woman or traveling alone, we recommend that you take the taxi to and from the airport to your hotel.
Getting to Puerto Jimenez by air–As mentioned before you can book a one hour flight to Puerto Jimenez from San Jose Airport. Please note that the domestic flights to Puerto Jimenez is not at the international airport in which you arrive. It can be in the small airport next to the international airport (10 minute walk) or another small airport about 15 minutes away by car. So you need to leave at least 2 hours between the two flights. If there are any delays with either of your flights, which is quite likely in Central America, it is going to be tough to get on another flight. This is why we recommend that you spend a night by the airport and go on the flight the next day. Domestic flights also overbook at times and they tend to push customers to the next flight during the day so booking an early jumper flight will decrease your chance of the airline delaying your arrival.
Getting to Puerto Jimenez by car –This is by far the better way to see the country and get to know Costa Rica. You hire a car to get to Puerto Jimenez. It is the same price as a flight and you get to stop beautiful sites along the way. With no traffic, you can get to Puerto Jimenez in less than 6 hours. The road is all highway! Places to stop along the way: Jaco, etc… We can help you arrange a car to get to Puerto Jimenez. Typically four people can share a large SUV and driver and pay between $400 and $500.
Getting around in Puerto Jimenez –we have bikes at the Osa Beach house. The town is small enough to take the bike and see everything. Walking is pretty easy as well along the marina and downtown. We’ll have a rental van at the house for our excursions and will take daily trips to town.
Breakfast will be prepared and served by one of our hired chefs so no one has to get up early to make breakfast. Maria helps us with the food buying so we can let her know what we would prefer. Food buys are cheaper across the border in Panama so if we give her ample notice we can save some money. Typical Costa Rican breakfast includes: strong coffee, eggs, tortillas, beans, tropical fruits, juice, and some kind of meat. There’s usually so much food that we end up making burritos to go for lunch.
We will usually pack lunches to go while we're doing something active: burritos and sandwiches are typical affairs.
We'll go out and explore what the town has to offer some evenings and other evenings our private chef will cook a typical meal from fresh seafood caught that day.
Groceries and Snacks
There are two large grocery stores in town similar to a Safeway with a Central American twist. Puerto Jimenez, although remote but being close to Panama has a lot of products that we didn’t expect they would have. Oddly they have a large selection of Asian and Central American products. Local produce is much cheaper and fresher than foreign produce. There’s a bakery, a butcher, and lots of refrigerated drinks and food.
We’re in the jungle baby! Even though Puerto Jimenez is a modern town, it is really part of the jungle. For those of you who have not been in a real tropical jungle and marine environment, we are at the mercy of nature: materials decays much faster; things stay wet longer; there are a lot of insects. Please make sure that you bring DEET for bug spray, natural stuff is just not going to work against tropical pests.
A few notable mentions:
-Zika Virus: Zika Virus is a risk in Costa Rica, especially for pregnant women. Please check the CDC website for more information. https://www.cdc.gov/zika/index.html
· Dust: During the dry season the dirt roads around Puerto Jimenez get very dusty. Those of you who are allergic to dust be aware – it will kick up your immune system.
· Mold: There’s mold everywhere in the jungle. Materials stay wet and ACs often have mold inside. Those of you who are allergic to mold, we recommend that you sleep in the open loft (no AC) as there’s plenty of ventilation.
· Big fire ants: these guys really sting and they last for a while. There’s nothing you can do about preventing it from happen other than be really watchful and wear shoes not open sandals.
· No-see-ums: Unfortunately some of the most beautiful beaches have no-see-ums and there are a lot of them. Don’t hang out on the edge of the water too long or they will find you. Bug repellent is very effective.
· Mosquitos: you know what to do about those. They are around more dust and dawn.
· Dogs and cats: Although there are a lot of dogs and cats that look like strays, most of them actually belong to someone. It is just the Tico way to let them roam around town. There is an animal rescue center in the town as well and they do as much as they can. Watch out for fleas if you’re going to pet them.
· Fleas: If you’re an animal lover as I am, it is very difficult to resist these lovable creatures. Unfortunately, the fleas will get on you and into your luggage. Bug spray and flea collars are helpful. Make sure you leave your clothes outside and wash your clothes in hot water as soon as you get home. I would also give your luggage a generous flea spray before you bring it inside of your home.
We have the following group gear in Costa Rica right now. The plan for 2019 would be to bring 3-4 more boards (2 of which might be hard SUP surf boards) and more paddles.
2 red paddle 9'8 ride - fins on the board
1 imagine mission 12'6x31 - plastic fin white
1 starboard deluxe tour 12'6x30
1 starboard race 12'6x25
1 redpaddle race 12'6x27
1 imagine mission 12'6x30 orange
4 kanahas hybrid - 2 green 2 red carbon shaft fiberglass blade adjustable
2 redpaddle - adjustavle fiberglass shaft plastic blade
6 leashes besides the ones that are in each bag
6 glide fins with screws also
Each board bag has fin and leash
Race boards have race leashes
1 electrical pump - button not working just plug in and out
5 Additional drybags
1 first aid kit in drybag
Patch kits several
Tapes, paddle wax, fin screws, fin screwdriver.
Private cabana (one queen bed) for two people, all inclusive. Pricing is per person.