No trip to Costa Rica’s Mid-Pacific region is complete without a visit to Manuel Antonio National Park. Even though it is the smallest National Park in the country, it is one of the most popular ones for its stunning white sand beaches backed by evergreen tropical forests.

The park is filled with beach vegetation, lagoons, mangrove swamps, 109 species of mammals and 184 species of birds. One of the park’s biggest attractions is Punta Catedral, or “Cathedral Point”, which is a forest-topped cliff; it was an island in the past, but it’s now connected to the coast by a narrow strip of land. This land bridge is the spine that separates the park’s two most popular beaches: Espadilla Sur and Manuel Antonio.

In Manuel Antonio you will enjoy a charming combination of tropical forest, beaches and coral reefs; all providing a home to sloths, iguanas, monkeys and millions of colorful marine creatures.

What to bring: Swimsuit, sun block, sandals, towel, camera and a hat.