On our recent trip to Costa Rica, we stayed at the El Parador & Spa, Manuel Antonio, located near the top of Punta Quepos. You can hear the nearby howler monkeys down and around in the trees around the property. It took some getting used to, as first I wasn’t sure if it was a wolf or dog or lion……just a roooooaarr.
‘El Parador’ Resort is Spanish colonial in décor. The property offers great views due to it’s location near the top of Punta Quepos. There’s a path you can take to walk down to a little beach cove. The property’s restaurant offers great service and local cuisine.
Fresh fish was always on my radar. One of my favorites was Costa Rica’s ceviche which they marinate with ginger ale. The ginger flavor isn’t prominent and who would have thought ginger ale? Yummy!
We visited Manuel Antonio National Park our next morning, a lush rainforest reserve with indigenous wildlife ends right on the edge of a wonderful crescent of beach. The walk on the path towards the beach includes sightings of capuchin monkeys, howler monkey, two- and three-toed sloths - some cradling their babies, indigenous birds and raccoons -- to list a few. The capuchin monkeys were quite mischievous as they would steal food from picnicking beachcombers. You can get quite close for pictures. What was a bit daunting was a raccoon that looked like a miniature anteater as they had long dangerous looking claws and also get quite close to people…so be quite careful.
Manuel Antonio is one of Costa Rica’s natural wonders!
After the park visit I was ready for a dip in the pool and a beverage at the pool. El Parador has three pools, one for families and two designated as adult pools. The main pool is an infinity pool with a swim up bar.
With a glass of wine in hand, I walked into the infinity pool and over to the ledge to rest my arms over the ledge to enjoy the beautiful view of the ocean below. What a view! And just a few minutes away from the park and it’s bustling town of bars and restaurants, you’re in a serene Spanish colonial oasis.