Central Pacific Coast Feature


Cruising to the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica

This area of the Pacific coast has two large cruise ship ports of call and a few smaller ones. Puntarenas, the country's original Pacific port, hosts ships from Celebrity, Cunard, Norwegian, Princess, Regent Seven Seas, and Royal Caribbean cruises on select Panama Canal and around-the-world itineraries. Farther south along the coast, the newer port of Caldera receives ships from Carnival, Crystal, Holland America, Seabourn, Silversea, and Windstar lines. With the atmosphere of an old-fashioned cruise port—some say "faded elegance"—Puntarenas is more interesting than Caldera itself. That said, most passengers arriving at either port head out on shore excursions—Manuel Antonio National Park, the Poás volcano, the market town of Sarchí, La Paz Waterfall Gardens, and San José are the most popular ways to spend the day.

Seabourn's smaller ships and Windstar's yachts also call at Quepos. Windstar offers several Costa Rica–only cruises that dock at Curú and Tortuga Island. On its nature-theme excursions, Lindblad Expeditions' smaller vessels call at Quepos and Playa Herradura, along with other Costa Rican destinations farther north and south.

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