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Manuel Antonio and the Central Pacific Coast Sights

Curú National Wildlife Refuge

  • Nature Preserve/Wildlife Refuge

Updated 06/09/2014

Fodor's Review

Established by former farmer and logger-turned-conservationist Frederico Schutt in 1933, this 106-hectare (262-acre) refuge has a fabulous beach and bay, perfect for kayaking; plus hiking trails leading through forest and mangrove swamps. Named after the indigenous word for the spiky-barked pochote trees that flourish here, the reserve is home to hordes of phantom crabs on the beach, howler and white-faced capuchin monkeys in the trees, red brocket deer grazing

in open fields, and plenty of hummingbirds, kingfishers, woodpeckers, trogons, and manakins (including the coveted long-tailed manakin). The refuge, classified as a Blue Flag project, is working on building an artificial reef. Visitors can stay in very basic beach-front cabins with solar-power ($30 per person, including entrance fee); meals are $10 each. Call ahead to arrange for lodging, guides, horseback riding, kayaking tours, and early-morning bird-watching walks. The entrance fee is $10.

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Sight Information


7 km (4½ miles) south of Paquera on road to Cóbano, left side of road, Paquera, 60105, Costa Rica



Sight Details:

  • $12
  • Daily 7–4

Updated 06/09/2014


Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating


  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

  • Value

Apr 14, 2008

Best wildlife/human ratio in CR!

You may or may not see another human being on the trails here. You WILL see all kinds of birds--we saw a black-headed trogon and several turquoise-browed mot-mots--as well as spider and capuchin monkeys, coatis, agoutis, crabs, lizards, etc. And the beach is amazing. This is a real hidden gem.

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