Guide To Jaco

Welcome to Jaco, Costa Rica, a vibrant coastal destination along the Pacific that’s gaining popularity for its exciting blend of sun, surf, and adventure. Located about 55 miles southwest of San Jose in the Puntarenas province, Jaco is a hotspot for beach enthusiasts and outdoor seekers. With its easily accessible location, Jaco has become a go-to destination. From thrilling surfing experiences to captivating hikes through lush landscapes, Jaco offers a taste of authentic Costa Rican life without straying too far from the beaten path. Let’s dive into the wonders of Jaco, exploring its lively atmosphere, diverse attractions, and the perfect mix of relaxation and excitement it has to offer.

In this blog post we’ll detail what you can expect in Jaco, where to stay, and some activities in the area.

beach in jaco costa rica
Jaco From The South End

The Main Strip

Jaco’s main strip is a buzzing focal point for visitors, offering a taste of Costa Rican culture and a lively atmosphere. Along this vibrant thoroughfare, you’ll discover a variety of local and international restaurants, serving up delicious bites that cater to diverse tastes. From savory traditional dishes to familiar favorites, the main strip is a culinary adventure that showcases the rich flavors of the region. The array of dining options provides a perfect opportunity to fuel up before hitting the nearby beach or to wind down after a day of exploring.

Where To Stay

Heading down to the southern stretch of Jaco Beach, you’ll discover a chill spot where the waves are more mellow, making it great for swimming and just soaking in the beach vibes. It’s the kind of place that’s perfect if you’re all about a more laid-back beach scene. And the cool part is, there are lots of places to stay nearby. From cozy beachfront spots to family-friendly rentals and boutique hotels. You get to enjoy the chill beach vibe while still having easy access to all the fun in town. 

If you’re a beginner looking for surfing lessons, the south end of Jaco is likely where you’ll start. The easy rolling waves are great to practice standing on your surf board. If you have a accommodations in the south end of the beach, simply rent a surf board and you can practice as much as you’d like.

Pick up a pair of these awesome water shoes. I've been using them all over Costa Rica during my travels. They have vented soles so water drains right out the bottom! Great for going to the beach and walking through town, or exploring rivers.

Welcome to Jaco, Costa Rica, a vibrant coastal destination along the Pacific that’s gaining popularity for its exciting blend of sun, surf, and adventure. Located about 55 miles southwest of San Jose in the Puntarenas province, Jaco is a hotspot for beach enthusiasts and outdoor seekers. With its easily accessible location, Jaco has become a go-to destination. From thrilling surfing experiences to captivating hikes through lush landscapes, Jaco offers a taste of authentic Costa Rican life without straying too far from the beaten path. Let’s dive into the wonders of Jaco, exploring its lively atmosphere, diverse attractions, and the perfect mix of relaxation and excitement it has to offer.

In this blog post we’ll detail what you can expect in Jaco, where to stay, and some activities in the area.

The Crocodile Bridge

Just a short drive from Jaco, the Crocodile Bridge in Costa Rica is a wild encounter that nature enthusiasts won’t want to miss. This bridge spans the Tarcoles River, and beneath its rusty structure, lies a spectacle of prehistoric-looking crocodiles sunbathing along the riverbanks. These massive reptiles, some reaching lengths of up to 15 feet, bask in the sun, creating a thrilling scene for onlookers. The Crocodile Bridge has become a must-see attraction for those seeking an up-close view of these fascinating creatures in their natural habitat.

Visitors can safely view the crocodiles from the bridge, which provides an excellent vantage point for snapping photos and observing the crocs’ behavior. It’s a unique opportunity for families and nature lovers to witness the raw power and ancient allure of these creatures. While the bridge may not be the usual tourist spot, the thrill of spotting these colossal reptiles in action makes it a memorable adventure, offering a fascinating glimpse into the untamed beauty of Costa Rica’s wildlife.

Hike To El Miro

Situated right in Jaco, the El Miro hike beckons adventurers to explore its well-marked trail amidst the captivating Costa Rican scenery. As you embark on this journey, it’s important to bring water to stay refreshed along the way. The trail’s accessibility makes it suitable for hikers of various skill levels, making it a family-friendly option for those wanting to experience the outdoors.

One of the highlights of the El Miro hike is the potential to spot monkeys and toucans, adding an extra layer of excitement to the trek. As you navigate through the trail, be on the lookout for these lively creatures that call the surrounding lush landscape home. Upon reaching the summit, hikers are treated to breathtaking panoramic views of Jaco and its coastal surroundings.

An intriguing feature of the El Miro hike is the chance to explore an abandoned house at the summit. This structure offers a unique vantage point, providing an unparalleled view of Jaco Beach and the surrounding area. It’s a captivating spot to take in the natural beauty and unwind after the hike, making the El Miro trail a hidden gem for those seeking a memorable adventure in Jaco.

Relax At Esterillos Oeste

Just a short drive from Jaco, Esterillos Oeste emerges as a laid-back coastal gem with its own unique charm. This beach town is easily accessible, making it a convenient escape for those looking to soak in the sun and sea without venturing too far. Esterillos Oeste is not only known for its relaxed beach vibes but also for an iconic landmark — the mermaid sculpture that graces the shoreline. This whimsical piece of art adds a touch of enchantment to the beach, creating a memorable spot for visitors to explore and capture photos.

The town itself echoes the easygoing coastal lifestyle, with local shops and eateries contributing to the inviting atmosphere. From surf shops offering beach essentials to quaint cafes serving up delicious bites, Esterillos Oeste invites visitors to embrace its beach-centric culture. Whether you’re looking to catch some waves or simply unwind by the shore, this coastal haven promises a genuine experience away from the hustle and bustle. So, take a leisurely stroll through the town, enjoy the laid-back beach vibes, and don’t forget to say hello to the mermaid as you immerse yourself in the coastal beauty of Esterillos Oeste.

If you're heading out for an adventure, you're going to need some cold watch and snacks. Pick up a backpack cooler, which has ample room for what you'll need while you enjoy the beach. There is an added benefit of freeing up your hands to carry the fun stuff!

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Be sure to Subscribe to our Youtube Channel, and leave a comment with your thoughts about this location or request a video in other cool destinations around Costa Rica.

We also upload ambient videos and walking tours of the locations that we visit, check out that channel Here. This channel has Ambient Walks from San Isidro de El General and The Butterfly Dome

Check the links in the Youtube video for Google Maps pins for all of these stores.

FAQ For Visiting Jaco

1. Where is Jaco located?
Jaco is located on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, approximately 55 miles southwest of San Jose, in the Puntarenas province.

2. What is there to do on Jaco’s main strip?
Jaco’s main strip offers a variety of local and international restaurants, shops, and a vibrant atmosphere perfect for exploring Costa Rican culture and cuisine.

3. Where should I stay in Jaco?
Options range from cozy beachfront spots to family-friendly rentals and boutique hotels, especially around the southern stretch of Jaco Beach, which is ideal for a laid-back experience.

4. What surfing opportunities are available in Jaco?
The south end of Jaco Beach is perfect for beginners with its mellow waves, making it an excellent spot for taking surfing lessons and practicing.

5. What can I see at the Crocodile Bridge?
Just a short drive from Jaco, the Crocodile Bridge spans the Tarcoles River, where you can safely view large crocodiles sunbathing along the riverbanks.

6. What is the El Miro hike?
The El Miro hike in Jaco offers a well-marked trail suitable for all skill levels, featuring potential sightings of monkeys and toucans and ending at an abandoned house with panoramic views of Jaco Beach.

7. What is special about Esterillos Oeste?
Esterillos Oeste is a laid-back beach town near Jaco, known for its relaxed vibes and the iconic mermaid sculpture on the shoreline, making it a great spot for a peaceful escape.
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