Ten days in Costa Rica with your charter yacht
by Nicci Perides
Costa Rica offers a combination of outstanding natural beauty, a laid-back vibe, and a very pleasant climate, making it a stunning destination for a charter with a difference. Here we offer some ideas for a ten-day charter in this wonderful country.
Day 1: Marina Papagayo – Bahia Huevos
Join your yacht at Marina Papagayo at midday, meet the crew, and settle into your quarters. While you get accustomed to your surroundings, and have a spot of lunch, he yacht travels the short distance to Bahia Huevos. After your leisurely lunch, and maybe a little siesta, you have the afternoon at anchor to swim, to snorkel and maybe do some paddle boarding. If the tide is high, you could take a kayak and explore Mangrove Iguanita. Back on board, enjoy a sundowner before dinner on board.
Day 2: Playa Huevos – Islas Murcielago
Sunrise at Playa Huevos, and breakfast, is accompanied by the sounds of Howler Monkeys in the nearby trees. Today you have a choice of on-water activities, or on-shore activities. On the water, you can have an ntroduction to scuba diving, go diving with Eagle Rays, Whitetips Sharks and schooling fish, try your hand at in-shore sportfishing for Mahi Mahi and Roosterfish, and then take a late afternoon cruise to Islas Murcielago to see the mating sea turtles. On shore, you can take a full or half day “Canopy Tour” at the Volcan Rincon de la Vieja National Park with a naturalist guide, where you will see primeval rainforest, waterfalls and wildlife.
Day 3:Islas Murcielago
Having spent the night at anchor off the Islas Murcielago (a National Park and World Heritage Site), you have another day messing around on and in the water. You can snorkel or Scuba in the beautiful clear waters teeming with fish, go diving with Bull Sharks and Giant Pacific Mantas at San Pedrillo, or go surfing at Isla Colorada and Ollies Point. And when you tire of the water, hike to the Rangers’ Station at Isla San Jose for spectacular views of all 12 islands. Cruise to Islas San Jose for overnight anchorage.
Day 4: Islas San Jose – Bahia Santa Elena
Enjoy an al fresco breakfast off the Islas San Jose before spending another day swimming, relaxing, and sunbathing. Maybe spend some time indulging in watersports. Go snorkeling, sea kayaking, Scuba diving, or offshore sportfishing for Black & Striped Marlin and Sailfish. At the end of the day, cruise to Bahia Santa Elena.
Day 5: Bahia Santa Elena – Bahia Junquillal
Another day, another perfect anchorage, this time in the Bahia Santa Elena. Here there are beautiful coral gardens for you to explore with your snorkel, and you can meet local artisanal hook fishermen and go diving with them. After a leisurely lunch on board, go ashore in the tender and hike into Santa Rosa National Park with a naturalist guide to see the tropical “Dry Forest” and its abundant wildlife. The tender also gives access to the unique geological coastal formations. Return to your yacht and cruise to Bahia Junquillal.
Day 6 & 7: Bahia Junquillal
With two days at anchor in the Bahia Junquillal, you have many options – sea kayaking and watersports, kite surfing at Salinas Bay, trekking in Junquillal National Park with a naturist guide, lunch at fisherman’s house in Cuajiniquil, a rainforest tour and horseback ride at Volcan Rincon de la Vieja, or a 4×4 off-road tour. Cruise overnight to Conchal.
Day 8: Playa Conchal – Punta Gorda
After breakfast overlooking the Playa Conchal, you have more tough decisions to make – swim, sunbathe, read a book in the shade, or more watersports. /and if none of that appeals, why not take a surfing class at Tamarindo or Avellana, or do some more sportfishing at Catalina Island. As the sun sets, take a night visit to Ostional National Park to see thousands Olive’s Ridley Turtles nesting. Back on board, cruise to Punta Gorda.
Day 9: Punta Gorda
Yes, it’s another day of relaxing, swimming and loafing about in a stunningly beautiful location. Yes, you can go exploring in the tender, do some paddle boarding or kayaking, maybe some snorkelling. Or you could just kick back, chill out and allow the crew to make your last full day on board as relaxed and enjoyable as possible.
Day 10: Back to Marina Papagayo
Cruise the 12NM back to Marina Papagayo where you will say goodbye to your yacht and crew before heading home.