Enjoying Nature in Curu Wildlife Refuge

Curu_WhiteFacedMonkeyOne of our favorite things to do in the Southern Nicoya Peninsula is visit Curu Wildlife Refuge. The main reason is of course for the nature and variety of wildlife that can be found here. There’s no shortage of white-faced monkey and iguana sightings among many other crawling and flying critters. But we recently spent a day there and found even more to love about Curu.


A small entrance fee gets you in for the day (until 4pm when the refuge closes) and allows you access not just to the beautiful hiking trails, but also to the beach, gift shop, cafeteria, and kayak rentals. We opted to hike/walk a short easy trail close to the beach that goes through the mangrove and ends back out at the beach. You can do the hikes on your own, but taking a paid tour or hiring a guide (and this is not just self-promotion) really does help you better understand what animals, plants and ecosystems you are encountering. Otherwise, it’s still a nice walk if you choose to go it solo.

Kayaking in Curu Wildlife RefugeKayak

After our little hike, we rented kayaks for an hour or so, which is plenty if your arms get tired easily. This is an amazing way to see the refuge from a different perspective and paddle around the bay to see some perching pelicans and other water birds when they are around. Grab lunch at the cafeteria (order and pay in advance), then scout a location on the beach to lounge away the rest of the afternoon. What a perfect little escape and a great way to see a little part of Costa Rica… naturally. 🙂

Check here for more about our guided tour to Curu or customized private tours.


Montezuma for Families

Often considered a backpackers town or yoga haven, there are also many great activities for families visiting Montezuma, even those with young children. From beach days, to nature walks here’s a few ideas to keep the family vacation fun for everyone.

1. Walk north on the beach from Montezuma toward a cascade called Piedra Colorada; literally translates to ‘colored rock’ which is exactly what you’ll find there. This spot offers a fun place to explore and take a refreshing dip in the cascades or ocean.

Let's Get Local - Cooking

Let’s Get Local – Cooking Demo

2. Take a day trip to Curu Wildlife Refuge. The refuge offers a shorter trail option, perfect for those with shorter legs or less tolerance for high humidity, but still with plenty of wildlife to see.

3. Walk to Montezuma Waterfall. Even if getting all the way to the falls is too much for some, relaxing by the cool cascades with a little picnic can be just a fun.

4. Go sightseeing. While the more adventurous family members are off surfing, snorkeling or ziplining, there’s an equally fun sightseeing tour  “Let’s Get Local”, that shows you the less obvious attractions, and takes you to share and learn about Costa Rican culture with a local family. This is a great option if you want to brush up on some Spanish words, find out what traditional cuisine tastes like, and immerse yourself a bit more into the area.

There you go! Now pack a bag for the kids, the grandparents, bring everyone. Enjoy!