Manuel Antonio's list of outdoor activities is almost endless. Tours generally range from $40 to $100 per person and can be booked through your hotel's reception desk or directly through the outfitter. During the rainy season, some outdoor options might lose their appeal, but clouds usually let loose in the afternoon, so take advantage of sunny mornings. Most nature-themed activities go on rain or shine.
Johan Chaves Nature and Birding Tours. Raised in Manuel Antonio, Johan Chaves provides three-hour guided tours of the national park that start bright and early at 7:30. Johan’s true passion for wildlife and nature make him one of the most sought-after guides in the region, so reserve (by email) well in advance. In addition to being an expert birder, he is extremely knowledgeable about animal behavior and Costa Rica's history. He has a talent for keeping children intrigued on the trail and for spotting wildlife around every turn. Bring water, sunscreen, walking shoes, bug spray, a camera, and swimsuit if you plan to linger at the beach following the tour. The fee includes park entrance and transportation to and from your hotel. Manuel Antonio, Puntarenas. 2779–1189; 8850–4419; www.johanchaves.weebly.com. $46 cash only.
Jade Tours. The certified and knowledgeable guides at Jade Tours will turn your park trek into an entertaining biology class, as they point out camouflaged wildlife in the treetops. Their team has over a decade of experience and will help you snap all those picture-perfect images of Costa Rica's flora and fauna through their high-powered scope. Included in the rate are transportation, park entrance, and snacks. DO NOT USE - MERGE in Manuel Antonio with Manuel Antonio, Manuel Antonio, Puntarenas. 2777–0932; 8632–8760; www.costaricajadetours.com. $50.