The "green" season from May to November is one of the best times to visit the Nicoya peninsula, although the rains can be very heavy in October. In mid-November, the trade winds from the northeast, known as the Papagayo, arrive to signal the end of the "winter". Many flowers are in bloom and in the green season the jungle is at it's most lush and vibrant green from May onwards. In the "green" season there are also fewer crowds, lower rates for accomodation, and cooler temperatures than in high season. The beaches are as interesting as always, but with more driftwood as the rains wash interesting rocks, pebbles, trees and branches down the rivers for the beachcombers.
We wish you a very pleasant stay.
The southern Nicoyan Peninsula, which has been slowly growing more popular over the last few decades, has now devloped into a popular tourist and retirement destination. This entire area is extremely beautiful and it's attractions change throughout the year as the temperatures and humidity levels vary.
Within a radius of 50 kms, tourists can visit six quite different areas, each one with its particular charms. Nature lovers will be encounter abundant flora and fauna, and many nature reserves. There are many different options to enjoy sports, and many restaurants appealing to different tastes.
In the last few years the Real Estate market has boomed, not only around the beach towns of Montezuma, Mal Pais and Santa Theresa, but further inland also, toward Betel and Panica. However, this growth seems to be levelling off recently because of the fall in value of the dollar caused by the subprime crisis worldwide.
Tambor, on the Gulf of Nicoya, is perfect for watersports, such as windsurfing on the great half-moon shaped.Bahia Ballena (Whale Bay). Nearby there are also facilities for sailing and an excellent golf course. On the many other beaches, such as Malpais, Santa Theresa and Montezuma, surfing and snorkelling can be enjoyed, plus many opportunties to trek on horseback along the beaches, and into the mountains.
Further south, between Montezuma y Cabuya, hikers can enjoy many interesting rocky bays, tide pools and white-sand beaches, not to mention great places to fish. Montezuma has evolved from a back-packers stop-over into a quite sophisticated tourist resort and is recognized by locals and visitors alike for its nightlife. The tiny village of Cabuya is the last place before Costa Rica's first Biological Reserve, Cabo Blanco, that covers the southern tip of the Nicoya Peninsula. Cabuya is also well-known for it's "Cemetery Island", which can be reached on foot at low tide, and is worth a visit.
The Pacific Coast of the Nicoya Peninsula is quite different from the Gulf coast, and has wide, extensive beaches providing a wide range of ideal surfing conditions, from beginner to expert.
Mal Pais, Playa Carmen and Santa Theresa seem to be merging into one big village, as new development fills in the open space that once separated them. The Mal Pais, or southern end, is much quieter and cannot grow much further, but the northern end seeems to still be slowly expanding to join up with Playa Hermosa, and eventually perhaps with Manzanillo.
Because of all this development, dust from the unpaved roads is becoming a nuisance, and this is all the more reason to visit this area in the "green" season, when the rain keeps the dust down.
(I hope the Mayor, Eladio, enjoys this comment!!!!)
Manzanillo has been attracting more and more tourists to it's sweeping beaches year after year, and there are many projects under construction to offer better facilities to future visitors. A small night club scene is developing and one of the nicest fiestas of the entire year is held here - the Sandcastle Fiesta, sponsored by the Cobano Branch of the Banco Nacional.