Fodor's Expert Review Playa Manuel Antonio
The town's safest swimming area is sheltered Playa Manuel Antonio, the second beach in the national park. Its white sand makes it attractive for lounging around, and the warm, clean water is good for snorkeling. There are plenty of palm trees where you can find shade on this wide stretch of sand, and just outside the park are vendors selling fresh coconut water and lychees. Keep watch over your food as raccoons and monkeys are known to steal lunches while people are swimming. Huge mounds of lava rock shelter this cove on both sides of the rugged coastline. Several shacks just outside the park rent beach chairs for about $15 a day. Beaches inside the national park do not have lifeguards or food vendors, unlike those near the entrance. Amenities: parking; showers; toilets. Best for: snorkeling; swimming; walking.