4.5 star rating: Recommended 30 Reviews

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  • Location: San Jose, Costa Rica
  • Duration:  12 hours (approx.)

Read what other Viator.com travelers think about the Manuel Antonio National Park Day Trip from San Jose. What they loved, what they liked and what they think could be improved, it's all here to help you make the most of your next trip.

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4 star rating: Recommended
March 2014

Our day trip was great and exceeded our expectations. Our tour director (Mario) was excellent and we felt safe with the driver. Manual Antonio National Park is very beautiful, an incredible place to visit, and arguably the most beautiful beach in Costa Rica. During our tour. we were provided a good breakfast, plenty of water and snacks, and a great fish late lunch. We also stopped at places to take pictures of birds, crocodiles, monkeys, etc., and were afforded opportunities to buy souvenirs. Our only concern and the reason we did not rate the tour as 5 stars, was the comfort of the van on that day. We were stuck in the rear seats of a 11 passenger Toyota van for nearly 7 hours. Our seats felt like they had no padding and with the rough roads combined for an uncomfortable ride. We would recommend this tour to anyone interested and just try to stay out of those back seats.

4 star rating: Recommended
January 2014

This tour is a very long one. Our tour guide is not of the best. We took several tours and he was the worst. we did not see many animals, but the beach was great. The water was warm and the beach was very clean. The lunch provided was good. On our way back, the bus broke and we had to wait for about an hour before another bus picked us up. When the bus came to get us, our guide was the first one to get on the other bus. He did now wait to make sure that everyone had departed from the broken bus. He was a lousy guide.

4 star rating: Recommended
January 2014

The complimentary breakfast and lunch were excellent.

4 star rating: Recommended
July 2013

Wish there was a guide. Didn't know where to go for animals other than the monkeys. Bus and food was great.

4 star rating: Recommended
July 2013

A guide would have been nice. Bus and food was great.

4 star rating: Recommended
March 2013

It's a long trip but worth it. The beach is beautiful and to see a sloth, a howler monkey and see some racoons go after people's food was the icing on the cake.

Helen W
United Kingdom

4 star rating: Recommended
November 2011

Absolutely brill trip.... a long travel but worth it, and of you only have 1 day to see the pacific coast then this is the best way to do it by far!
Only reason for not giving it 5 was that some of the people we took the trip with were really annoying - nothing that Viator could do but always worth remembering that you can't pay for the company you keep sometimes!

4 star rating: Recommended
July 2011

This tour was great. We had a very good time during our tour. Our guide was excellent and very knowledgeable. I was worried about Breakfast and lunch as we we're vegetarian but they have provided us good vegetarian food !! We saw so many wild life during this tour and no words to explain how beautiful the beach was....

I highly recommend this tour to anyone !!

Lukas N
Australia

4 star rating: Recommended
February 2010

A good way to see a lovely place from San Jose. One of the most lovely beaches I've ever seen. The tour guide was lovely and very bubbly and we were able to be dropped off in Manuel Antonio at the end of the trip rather than returning to San Jose which was handy. Unfortunantly a day trip leaving from San Jose only arrives at the park by mid morning so there are less animals and birds to see by that time of the day. I would recommend people visit the National Park by staying in Quepos or Manuel Antonio Town if they had the time, so that they could avoid the crowds later in the day.

4 star rating: Recommended
August 2008

The beaches are nice.

3 star rating: Worth doing
May 2014

The tour itself was really great, the place is EXTREMELY great, but be sure to check up on the weather before booking, it was raining hard when we took up on it and couldn't enjoy it properly.

Johan K
Denmark

3 star rating: Worth doing
February 2013

4 hours of driving each way. Too many hours in a bus and only 2 hours in the park.
I think the park must bee fantastick,but 2 hours is simply not enough

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better
January 2014

I was ready to pay more and stay overnight but I tried without success. The good point: it was a good experience in see this part of the country. The park I haven't seen enough due to lack of information from the tour guide so I spent most of my time relaxing in the beach, by the way it was a very good beach.
I lost my time in the beach and not enough time on the trails so I could not enjoy more wild life.
My final impression is; the tour do not give enough time to see the Park and the guide did not gave info.
In short $100 dollars + staying in Hotel drive 200 Km to spend most of the time in the beach was too expensive. The case of the businesses outside the park is mostly for those who appreciate night life.
It is a pitty that I did not see it properly mostly due to lack of time. $100 was right for what was given but my main point is: I was ready pay much more and be satisfied with seeing much more from the park.
All the trip was overrated.

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better
January 2014

This trip had the potential to be excellent but for me it was just OK.
First of all: The trip we made to the breakfast was not worth it. The people who owned/worked there made me feel like we were imposing on them... when I asked for a second slice of pineapple they said no, I could only have one. On top of that they didn't serve coffee with breakfast-only "samples" because they wanted you to buy a package of it. On my other tours this was included with breakfast.
additionally, you get a snack at the hotel, but we didn't get lunch until about 3pm. I'm glad they gave us a snack or I wouldn't have been able to make the walk back from the beach to the hotel. It's about 45 minutes.
Lastly, we had to stand in line, in the hot sun, with no shade, for about 45 minutes. I'm pretty sure that there is a way to avoid this, although I'm not positive since it is Costa Rica. The tour should warn people to bring an umbrella to stand under if there is no way to avoid this line. Also, this would be a good time to recommend to apply bug spray. I got three bites from something and it itched for 3 days. We had bug spray with us, but didn't think to apply it. A reminder would have been helpful.

My advise:
1. The breakfast should be skipped. Let people get to the beach sooner, this is what they are paying for. Then let them have lunch as soon as they get to the hotel.
2. Additionally, pay the extra money so that you don't have to stand in line for 30-45 minutes. That part was particularly obnoxious. If there is no way to avoid this, then warn the passengers to bring a light umbrella as shade during the line.
3. One more thing: Don't allow passengers on the bus who haven't paid yet. Dealing with a passenger's declined credit card also cost us at least an hour out of our day. We wound up dropping her off at a hostel on the way home. It could have been avoided by checking her in BEFORE we left.

On a high note we saw many animals, including TWO sloths!

2 star rating: It was OK, but could have been better
June 2013

I loved the destination. The beach is gorgeous. My issues were (1) the tour guides take your entrance ticket to the park. We accidentally walked out of the park on a trail (no sign at all to signal we had left) and when we turned around a few minutes later to go back a guard refused to let us in.

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Tour code: 3171SJO_MANP

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