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North America > Central America > Costa Rica > South Pacific Costa Rica > Uvita


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Uvita is a small town south of Dominical, and north of Ojochal.


Uvita is in the heart of Ballena Marine National Park. There has been a tremendous influx of foreigners moving into Uvita over the past few years. Uvita was once considered "remote" but now features numerous grocery stores, banks, doctors, dentists, Internet cafés and a thriving expat and local culture.

Get in[edit]

From Quepos, take a bus to Uvita

From San José, you can take the bus via Quepos or take the bus to San Isidro de Perez Zeledon and from there the bus to Uvita. The first option is longer, but a great drive next to the ocean. The second one a shorter ride, and great view over a great mountain range.

From Palmar Norte and south of there, the bus to Dominical goes by Uvita, or the Uvita bus stop at the town.

To get to Uvita from San José SJO airport, you can take Easy Ride Shuttle Services. They run shuttles twice a day in moderns vans, professional drivers, A/C they go through the coast and the trip is 3½ hours - a lot faster than regular bus.

You can also fly into Palmar Sur via Sansa or Nature Air.

Or rent a car and drive yourself.


  • Ballena Marine National Park- This large coastal national park is famous for the Humpback Whales that migrate here each year from December to April to mate. The enormous pristine beaches here are rarely crowded and perfect for swimming, snorkeling, and sun-bathing. At low tide, a land bridge appears to Punta Uvita, and visitors can walk out to the tip which resembles a whale tail. There is also a small estuary which many people swim and fish in despite signs that warn of crocodiles. Walking through the main entrance will cost foreigners about US$6, but there are many unmarked trails that lead to the beach as well.
  • Waterfalls- Walk north of the main road past Tucan Hotel, turn left after the cemetery, and walk up a large hill. There will be signs all along the way reading "Cataratas" or "Waterfalls". Near the top of the hill on the left, there is a little restaurant which charges US$2 to access the lovely waterfalls in the canyon behind their property. A steep path leads down to the waterfalls and several swimming holes which are surrounded by bamboo and flowering trees. A perfect place to get out of the sun for a while and read a book, swim, and relax.
  • Envision festival (February/March)


You will find a great deal of places, from a drive thrue hot dog place, to lots of little sodas (small little restaurants that are traditional all over Costa Rica. Seafood is great. Uvita is on the ocean. Pizza places are around, La Fogata is the oldest and best one, they also have great BBQ chicken. For more upscale you can visit Terrazas, up in the hills of Uvita, great view. Also La Cusinga Eco Lodge, the first hotel in the area, a truly eco lodge. Call ahead for reservations, as it is by reservation only. La Cusinga offers a great view of Ballena Marine National Park. They have trails and a private preserve. A new Mexican place is open, next to the gas station.

  • [dead link] The Aracari Restaurant, La Cusinga Lodge (next to Ballena Marine National Park). 07:00–20:00. Organic meals made with fresh produce grown on its farm. There's an open-air dining area.


Well you are at the beach and a hot sun will make you search for a cool drink, along the beach there are a few bars, also in the main road there are a few too. there are always something happening, Karaoke, ladies night, a soccer match on TV. Try the local beer, Imperial, or the Cacique ron. Some of the place are Marino Ballena, Almendros, Pachanga, Delfines, and some that come and go. For a more upscale sunset relaxing mood Terrazas is the place, drink special, and movie nights are always popular.


  • Canto Ballena
  • Rana Roja Cabins
  • Nido del Halcon
  • Cabinas Gato
  • 1 Mar y Selva Ecolodge, Ballena-Uvita (From entrance to Ballena Beach, 1.4 km south, 1.2 km east), +506 2786-5670. Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 11:00. Rain-forest ecolodge overlooking Ballena Marine National Park. It provides a relaxing immersion in the rain-forest with breathtaking views of the Three Sisters Islands in the Pacific while being 10-15 minutes from several beautiful beaches and many activities. Dedicated to making your stay memorable, protecting the environment,and offering you all the comforts of home, we are a non-smoking establishment. US$85-120.
  • 2 Tucan Hotel (Just north of the main road), +506 2743-8140. The Tucan Hotel is a hostel that caters more to budget travelers. Rooms are clean, there are plenty of hammocks, and room to camp as well. The Tucan offers a free shuttle to the Ballena Marine National Park and other area beaches. They also have Wi-Fi, computer access, kitchen use, coffee and parking, all of which are free. The Tucan has a restaurant and bar on site, and usually a rather mellow atmosphere. They have a small library and rent bicycles, surfboards, and snorkel gear. Also, be sure to hang out in the treehouse out front. US$6 camping or hammock, $10 dorm, $25-35 private room.
  • 3 La Cusinga Eco Lodge (La Cusinga Lodge), 5 km south of Uvitas bridge, between Km 166 & 167 (From main bridge in Uvita, 5 km south on the right hand side, Costanera Highway), +506 2770-2549, e-mail: . Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 11:00. Eco lodge, next to Ballena Marine National Park. 4-star hotel. It has a restaurant, the Aracari Restaurant. The ecolodge borders the Ballena Marine National Park, one of only two nationally protected marine zones in the whole country. US$90.
  • Kura Design Villas, Costa Ballena, +506 8448-5744, e-mail: . Posh boutique resort. Private villas. Infinity pool. Panoramic views of the Pacific and the “Whale’s Tail”. Rainfall showers. Full service spa. Yoga retreats. Diving and snorkeling. Close to secluded beaches. from US$440.
  • 4 Oxygen Jungle Villas (1.5 km NE of Catarata de Uvita), +506 83224773, e-mail: . Check-in: 15:00, check-out: 12:00. An adult-only boutique resort featuring 12 all-glass villas and an infinity pool with views of Marino Ballena National Park. US$199.

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