Jaco Beach, Costa Rica Vacations

Our Opinion of Jaco Beach

Long known as the surf capital of Costa Rica, Jaco is an active beach town, attracting backpackers, surfers, single travelers and beach party crowds, whether they are foreigners or ticos. Jaco's proximity as the closest real beach town to San Jose makes it an extremely popular weekend destination for residents from the capital region.

In addition to fantastic surf conditions, Jaco offers endless opportunities for water sports and other outdoor activities, as well as a bustling nightlife. The main street is where you will find most of the bars and restaurants.

Known as a surfers' haven due to consistently high surf, the most frequented beaches are Playa Jaco, Playa Hermosa and Playa Herradura. Swimming can however be quite dangerous as there are often riptides and large waves.

A little farther down the coast, you will find the Manuel Antonio National Park which has several little great beaches, such as Punta Leona, Playa Espadilla Sur and Playa Manuel Antonio.

Things to know about Jaco Beach, Costa Rica Vacations

Activities & Sports
One of the best ways to explore more rural areas is on horseback. There are many excursions to choose from. Hiking and mountain biking trails are also plentiful in the many forest, parks and reserves. Rafting and kayaking trips can also be arranged through excursion companies.

Golfers can enjoy some of the best golf courses in Central America. Nearby you will find the Suenos Marriott includes an 18 hole golf course.

Besides offering every aquatic sports imaginable, Jaco Beach's surfing is one of the best surfing destinations in Costa Rica. It is centrally located to easily access a variety of surf breaks up and down the coast for all levels of surfers.
Dining & Nightlife
Jaco has many great restaurants to choose from. La Hacienda offers great sandwiches, steaks and burgers. For a more elegant meal, El Bohio is an excellent choice for seafood and dining on the beach. If you're looking for Mexican, Pacho Villas is the best option. In addition to the more expensive restaurants, there are many great sodas, traditional Costa Rican restaurants, in the Jaco area.
Jaco is known for its party and bar scene. Some of the bars include: La Central, Onyx, Beatle Bar, Nacho Daddy's, Pancho Villa, La Bruja, Club Ole, Bar El Zarpe, and The Backyard Bar, located just South of Jaco in Playa Hermosa. Many of the local restaurants are excellent spots to sit down and have a cocktail as well. The Beatle Bar, however, is notorious for prostitution.

Gamblers will enjoy one of the many casinos found here: Jazz Casino, Cocal Casino, Jaco Fiesta Casino, Marriots Casino. 
There are numerous small shops and stands all along Jaco's main strip that runs parallel to the water. There is also a small mall, El Galeone, along the main street. There are a few unique stores in the mall. The center even boasts a very nice Americanized coffee shop.

Languages: Spanish, some English.
Currency: The Colon. US dollars are widely accepted. ATM's are not easy to find and the Cirrus system is not compatible everywhere.
Climate: The temperature ranges between 18°C and 26°C.
Electricity: 110 V, 60 Hz.

Canadian citizens require a passport that is valid until 30 days after their scheduled return. For all other nationalities, consult your consulate or Costa Rican Tourist Board for details.
Note: Each travelling passenger is responsible to pay a local departure tax in US dollars. This fee is payable in cash at the airport in destination prior to boarding your flight. The departure tax is $27.40 US per person (subject to change). Note only US Cash or equivalent Costa Rican Colon are accepted.

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