Costa Rica: Santa Teresa

After flying into San Jose and visiting Manuel Antonio, the second part of our trip was spent in Santa Teresa, a small town on the Pacific Coast in the Southwest region, which attracts both beach lovers and surfers.

Santa Teresa beach

Day 5 – Travel day, Beach & Pool

We spent a full morning making the trip from Manuel Antonio to Santa Teresa. We stopped on the bridge (just after Jaco) to see the crocodiles. After we got to Puntarenas, we took a one hour ferry ride, and then continued driving until we reached Santa Teresa. After checking into our hotel, we spent the afternoon at the beach and pool.

Jaco crocodiles - Costa Rica

Santa Teresa, Costa Rica

Day 6 – Body Boarding

Santa Teresa is a very hippy, surfing town. The waves were unbelievably strong and huge. Our second day in town, we decided to rent a boogey board and for $7 it provided lots of laughs (and hurts too). While we got beat up at first, we slowly got the hang of it. It was fun to watch the locals ride the massive waves. We ate dinner at a restaurant on the beach!

Santa Teresa Beach, Costa Rica Santa Teresa Beach, Costa RicaSanta Teresa Beach, Costa Rica Santa Teresa Beach, Costa Rica Santa Teresa Beach, Costa Rica

Santa Teresa Beach, Costa Rica Santa Teresa Beach, Costa Rica

Day 7 – MonteZuma Waterfall, Beach, Pool

We drove to a nearby town, MonteZuma, and spent the morning there. The town is popular because of a large waterfall and more beaches. In addition to walking (climbing) to the waterfall, we were able to climb up passed the waterfall and found a rope swing and another cliff. We realized later this was the same cliff that Tom Brady jumped off that made headline news. While it was very scary, I knew I would regret it if I didn’t jump, so after a little hesitation I made the jump. Colby and I got to jump together and if I didn’t have to keep climbing up the rocks I probably would have kept going! After leaving the area and driving back to our hotel, we enjoyed the afternoon at the beach and pool.

MonteZuma Waterfall

MonteZuma Waterfall

MonteZuma Cliff Jumping

MonteZuma Waterfall
MonteZuma Waterfall
Otro Lado Costa RicaSanta Teresa, Costa Rica

Our tips:
  • The roads in Santa Teresa are bad – they are all gravel. You will drive and drive and drive and still be on gravel. If you go to this area, you do need a SUV.
  • Several tourists told us they paid a local to go see the waterfall in MonteZuma, but do some research and you can get in free (like we did).
  • The waves are massive. Santa Teresa is not a good beach to get in and enjoy the water, but if you like watching surfers or want to surf yourself this is a great place to go.
  • We didn’t make a huge effort to see the sunset, but wish we had!
  • The ferry ride is $1.50/person or $25/car. Make sure to get there a little early. If you have a car, get in the car line – then go buy your ticket – and then get back in the car. We were very confused on how the process worked!
  • We stayed at Otro Lado and really enjoyed it: 3 minutes walk to the beach, free parking, delicious free breakfast, cleaning service every day, and an awesome pool!

I didn’t start sharing our traveling adventures on the blog until the end of 2013, but you can see some of our trips below as well as how to travel on a budget here.

The rest of the trip is to be continued…….

  • Cheryl Smith
    Posted at 06:54h, 03 June Reply

    So thankful you two had such a great time! It looks like a beautiful place. 🙂

  • jennifer prod
    Posted at 09:26h, 03 June Reply

    your life is like a dream, and i wanna jump into all your pictures and live it with you 🙂 fast fact? boogey boarding is one of my all-time favorite things (quick joy and always elicits a giggle or seven)

  • laci
    Posted at 09:32h, 03 June Reply

    Amazing !!! My mother law that I have never met lives in Costa Rica can’t wait till we finally go.

  • Rebecca Jo
    Posted at 09:38h, 03 June Reply

    That beach… all the blue! WOW!!
    You just look beautiful in every picture!!!

  • Molly
    Posted at 09:39h, 03 June Reply

    Oh my goodness, how much fun is that! Looks like you had a blast. Those crocodiles are SCARY!

  • Cassie
    Posted at 09:58h, 03 June Reply

    So beautiful! Those alligators are crazy and that waterfall is amazing!!!

  • Sarah
    Posted at 10:07h, 03 June Reply

    Sounds like such a wonderful trip. Costa Rica looks beautiful! Thanks for sharing with those of us who won’t be able to travel there any time soon. 🙂

  • Alexis
    Posted at 11:45h, 03 June Reply

    Next time I want to hide in your suitcase so that I can come along! So much fun but those crocodiles…yikes! There were SO many of them!

  • Tiffany | A Touch of Grace
    Posted at 12:34h, 03 June Reply

    The restaurants on the beach are so cool! That was by far our favorite dinner in Costa Rica! Love the waterfall!

  • Mia @ MakeMeUpMia
    Posted at 13:04h, 03 June Reply

    So pretty! Those pics of you guys jumping, ahhh it looks so high! But, I’d probably regret it too if I didn’t. How fun 🙂

  • Kim Adams Morgan
    Posted at 14:57h, 03 June Reply

    Okay, Caroline. When we were talking about Costa Rica and I said I was frighten of the reptiles, you failed to mention all these crocodiles. Imagine my surprise when I see photos of them here. They are MUCH bigger than those lizard thingys, what are those called in the video? Rick and I are starting to talk about a trip here. Are they everywhere in the water? We had to deal alligators in SC and of course I saw them everywhere in Florida. I’d never swim in the water in either place. I see you swimming so it must me safe, right?

  • Kim Adams Morgan
    Posted at 14:58h, 03 June Reply

    sorry, I hit send as I was correcting…meant frightened.

  • Biana @Blovedboston
    Posted at 11:06h, 04 June Reply

    Jumping from a waterfall has been on my list forever – so much fun!! That picture with the crocodiles scared me!! And the beaches look like perfection! xo, Biana –BlovedBoston

  • Kim Hilbert
    Posted at 19:28h, 04 June Reply

    I loved the pictures of how blue the sky is, so beautiful! Thanks for all the tips. I don’t travel much, but good points to remember to ask about if I do end up traveling.

    Posted at 07:22h, 05 June Reply

    aw, this is making me miss my trip there several years ago. love the pics!!

  • Angela
    Posted at 23:23h, 05 June Reply

    This looks like SO much fun!! I don’t know if I could have jumped though. 🙂

  • Brandy
    Posted at 09:39h, 06 June Reply

    So beautiful!!!! What gorgeous views! … PS.. you go girl for jumping off that cliff… i never could have haha.

  • Kristi Case
    Posted at 09:38h, 08 June Reply

    This looks like such a fun trip! I would love to visit Costa Rica one day!

  • Melanie
    Posted at 09:47h, 08 June Reply

    Wow, amazing! Thanks for sharing!

  • Rhonda
    Posted at 18:34h, 08 June Reply

    I love the picture of you two jumping together, and the last pic!

  • Patti
    Posted at 08:40h, 09 June Reply

    My BIL loves Costa Rica and visits often. Looks like you guys had a great trip.

  • Kelli {A Deeper Joy}
    Posted at 12:54h, 09 June Reply

    Oh my gosh this makes me want to go back to Costa Rica! But those crocodiles are freaky :-p I LOVE that you jumped off the waterfall…that looks like so much fun. That whole little cove looked awesome. Y’all got great photos on the beach too! I need a vacation! 🙂

  • Kayla Pantalion
    Posted at 21:18h, 10 June Reply

    I have always wanted to go to Coasta Rica! I am in Australia right now for 6 months, but I plan on going there when I get back! Hope you had fun!

  • emmett
    Posted at 12:08h, 16 June Reply

    body boarding looks like it would be really fun, although I’m not the best swimmer so I’m not sure! beautiful vacation pictures 🙂

    Emmett – Hippie Lace

  • Laura @ Making Baby Provence
    Posted at 09:02h, 19 June Reply

    Those waves look ridiculously amazing!! Those are not the type that I know how to surf. 🙂

    I got butterflies looking at your cliff-jumping pictures. It makes me want to go jump right now!

    I am so glad you document these trips. They are amazing!

  • Joy
    Posted at 10:11h, 06 July Reply

    My husband and I LOVE Manuel Antonio! Looks like an amazing trip!

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