Named as one of the most beautiful national parks in the world by Forbes, Manuel Antonio National Park is the gem of Costa Rica, with its tours being heavily sought by visitors. This site can get incredibly crowded, however, as well as is closed on Mondays and all holidays.
You’d ideally want to plan your trip to the vicinity of the Manuel Antonio National Park on days other than Monday, but what to do if things didn’t quite work out? If your schedule is tight and you were unlucky to be here when the park’s closed, what to do in Manuel Antonio on Monday?
Fortunately, there are many other interesting places and tours to attend in order to uncover the full potential of Costa Rica. They might even be as beautiful or spectacular as the National Park, offering a somehow different experience to visitors.
So below, we’d like to introduce to you a couple of ideas on what to do in Manuel Antonio on Monday.
Hike at Rainmaker Conservation Park
The first idea on what to do in Manuel Antonio on Monday is to pay a visit to the Rainmaker Conservation Park, a nice alternative to the National Park. And while Manuel Antonio National Park is unparalleled by anything else in Costa Rica, Rainmaker Conservation Park does offer its own unique experience.
In just a half-hour drive of Quepos and Manuel Antonio, Rainmaker Conservation Park features a setting that differs drastically from its surroundings. Rainmaker Conservation Park is primarily a rainforest, so it doesn’t house as many monkeys as the National Park.
This site nonetheless has many other interesting wildlife species to see like poison dart frogs, glass-winged butterflies, a plentitude of birds, and snakes. Furthermore, Rainmaker Conservation Park is a heaven for photographers to take beautiful macro shots of local wildlife in.
Sized at 2,000 hectares, Rainmaker is quite an expansive reserve. But its nice trails looping past several waterfalls and hanging bridges fully allow for the enjoyment of all the key spots in the park.
Try exotic fruits at Rainforest Spices
Costa Rica is quite renowned for its food tours. If you don’t want to go too far out from Quepos and Manuel Antonio, check out the Rainforest Spices farm tour. Just 10 miles outside of Quepos, this farm grows a multitude of exotic fruits and spices.
This farm is specialized in Ceylon cinnamon and vanilla, but farmers here also cultivate turmeric, black pepper, allspice, cocoa, and many other spices and fruits.
Rainforest Spices tour takes plays at the plantation, with the tour being separated into four parts.
First, visitors are shown the warehouse where spices are dried, processed, and packaged. Tourists are then led through the “Epiphyte Trail” that winds through the entire plantation. Next comes the viewpoint past the fish pond where visitors can not only enjoy the views but also experience Rainforest Spices’ so-called “Flavors of the World” tasting with a variety of flavorful drinks and spice treats made from scratch.
The final stop at the plantation is the Spice Shoppe, which offers products grown on the farm for tourists to try out in their own recipes, thus extending the tour experience well beyond the tour itself.
Partake chocolate at La Iguana Chocolate
The La Iguana Chocolate tour is further away from Manuel Antonio – in a 2-2.5-hour drive – so you probably won’t be able to take part in it if you are in the area only for a short time. But if you are here for a good amount of time or if your route lies through the chocolate farm in the mountains of Mastatal, you definitely should pay a visit to them.
The Salazar Garcia family, the owner of the 4-hectare farm plot in the mountains for around three decades, has only recently started cultivating cacao. In spite of this, they grow arguably the finest organic chocolate on the planet.
What you may also like about this tour is how up-close and personal it is since it is personally guided by the members of the family. They will show you each step of the chocolate-making process, even providing you with an opportunity for grinding raw cacao and tempering liquid chocolate.
Enjoy the views at Playa Biesanz
The main beach of Manuel Antonio is Playa Espadilla just outside Manuel Antonio National Park. It gets very crowded though, but fortunately, there are a couple of lesser-known spots in the area. One of them is Playa Biesanz.
Playa Biesanz is a deep cove with turquoise water and lush jungle surroundings. Having calm water, unlike most other beaches of Manuel Antonio, this beach is a favorite among the locals who very often pay a visit to it on weekends. Furthermore, thanks to the calmness and safety of the water, Playa Biesanz is an excellent beach to bring children to.
Go kayaking & snorkeling at Biesanz Bay
Beach tours do offer some spectacular sights to delight in, but the beauty of Manuel Antonio isn’t limited to the seaside! So why not go see what’s beyond beaches on one of the local kayaking & snorkeling tours?
I you will like to experience this tour, feel free to contact us here. Lasting for around 4 hours, this tour is quite a lengthy one, so make sure you have the time for it.
Being a light sea kayaking tour, this kayaking & snorkeling tour doesn’t require previous kayaking experience. In addition, if you have children older than 8 years, you can bring them along as well.
The exciting adventure departs from the pier of Quepos, with the destination being a hidden inlet called Biesanz Bay. Here, you can snorkel, have a snack, or rest while enjoying the environment and exploring the coastline. This site offers various opportunities for snorkelers to spot starfish, angelfish, and even sea turtles.
Along the way to the Biesanz Bay and back, there are also things to admire – marine birds, their nesting grounds, flying fish, and other marine life are there to accompany you on the journey.
If you have any questions feel free to contact us here.