SANTA TERESA, COSTA RICA- A barefoot bliss paradise
Santa Teresa is located just north of the Cabo Blanco National Park on the unspoiled southern coast of the Nicoya Peninsula. The first time I discovered this heavenly place was more than 10 years ago. At that time the place was a sleepy fishing village with only a few surf 'shacks' available for accommodation.
However, I found Santa Teresa unbelievably beautiful. As far as the eyes could see, there were endless rainforest and endless white beaches. I knew immediately that this was a place to which I would keep returning to.
Santa Teresa has changed, it has become a lot more glamorous and chic, but it has succeeded in keeping its purity and its genuine charm. Don't expect any paved roads. Instead there are dirt roads with its gigantic pot holes which get flooded in rain season, only allowing a sturdy jeep or a 4 wheel motorbike to get you around. However, it is these dirt roads and its 'hard to reach location' that keep Santa Teresa as the barefoot bliss it is. The feeling of serene nature and being one with the locals is still there.
As said, Santa Teresa is not the easiest place to reach. However, the journey here is one of the most beautiful and worth every minute of travelling. When you finally get here you probably won't put your shoes on for your remaining stay. Paradise and bliss awaits...
Santa Teresa is all about relaxing, world class surfing, health and nature. The main beach stretches all the way from Mal Pais to Hermosa. I personally prefer the more Northern part of the long stretched white beach (Both Flor Blanca and Latitude 10 are located on this side). The feeling of seclusion and peacefulness is evident here and you feel that you more or less have the whole beach to yourself.
Wake up at sun rise, walk down to the beach with a coffee in your hand and watch the waves and let the day begin. Start the day with a dip in the ocean, maybe a surf session or a yoga class. Take a walk on the beach to any of the small restaurants ( Roca Mar is just around the corner ) and have a long, lazy and fresh lunch.
Watch the spectacular sunsets over a mojito at the bar at Flor Blanca, have dinner at some of the lovely small restaurants and fall asleep to the soothing sound of the waves. Santa Teresa is all about barefoot bliss and forgetting about the stressful lives at home.
WHERE TO STAY:
- FLOR BLANCA: The first luxurious boutique hotel in Santa Teresa but still a favourite. Private villas in lovely settings. http://www.florblanca.com/
- LATITUDE 10 DEGREES : Small beautiful beachfront boutique hotel with 10 stunning, luxurious bungalows. http://www.latitude10resort.com/
WHERE TO EAT: Santa Teresa is filled with amazing small places that serve excellent fresh, seasonal food. Below are a few places that you can't go wrong with:
- KIKAS: Argentinian restaurant with great atmosphere and lovely food.
- KOJI'S : Amazing sushi. Cozy setting with wooden tables in a midst of palm trees and bamboo.
- ROCA MAR: The seafood tacos are a must. Located right on the beach. Perfect for a chilled lunch under an umbrella.
- CHICKEN JOE's: Very casual and simple little place but the food is delicious. Perfect for a lunch.
WHAT TO DO: Santa Teresa is all about lazy days in the hammock reading books in between surfing and swimming. Both Flor Blanca and Latitude 10 degrees offers great yoga classes as well as private surfing lessons. Rent a bicycle and go around the little town and stop by at any of the small cafe's or bakeries. Go horse riding on the beach, open water fishing or rent a jeep for a day excursion around the are which is surrounded by beautiful nature.
HOW TO GET HERE: International flights to San Jose, Costa Rica. Then a short flight to Tambor. Nature Air and SANSA fly to Tambor ( 35 min flight) . Make sure to prebook a taxi from Tambor airfield to Santa Teresa .
If you have the time and prefer to drive and then take the ferry, then make sure you rent a 4-wheel jeep. The journey is beautiful and will take you through some stunning landscape and scenery.
WHEN TO GO: Dry Season runs from December to April while the rain season dominates the rest of the year. However, the rain season is also the green season when the rainforest is the most lush and beautiful. When it rains it pours, however usually it last only a short while.
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