La Cruz, Guanacaste

Share on Facebook
Tweet this page
Visitors to La Cruz are rewarded with a peaceful ambiance, the beauty of a remote destination and great surfing. It is a small hilltop town situated in the Santa Elena Peninsula in the northwest corner of Guanacaste Costa Rica. It is located 277 km northwest of San José, Costa Rica’s capital city, and is just east of the Inter-American Highway. By way of more directions, La Cruz is just 20 km from the main border crossing with Nicaragua. Perhaps its main claim to fame is its nearness to the natural splendor of Santa Rosa National Park and the surrounding area.

The nearest airport is the Daniel Oduber International Airport, otherwise known as the Liberia International Airport. For those driving from San Jose, the journey will take about five hours. Bus service is available from certain locations.

The Fascinating Area of Guanacaste

This area of Costa Rica has drawn praise for its natural beauty and its options for active recreation, including surfing, hiking, birding and swimming. The region boasts a varied terrain and a warmer, drier climate than much of the rest of the country. It has some of the best Costa Rica beaches, many of which are renowned for sunny days, low humidity and exciting wave action. The beaches in this part of the country tend to have few crowds so it is always possible to find a secluded stretch of beach to explore.

Additional highlights of this region include active volcanoes, waterfalls and abundant tropical wildlife. Other than taking on the ocean waves on a surfboard, you can spend your time snorkeling, horseback riding, zip lining and hiking.

The Wonders of Santa Rosa National Park

Most people visit the park in the dry season, when the trails are open for exploration and the lovely beaches are more accessible. It is a wonderful place to catch the waves, especially near Witch’s Rock, a familiar rock formation famed for prime surfing conditions. Established in 1972, the park was the first of its kind in Costa Rica, and helped to solidify the country as a leader in ecotourism.

The park is home to nesting sea turtles, thousands of intriguing insects and plant species and hundreds of animals and bird varieties. It includes a diversity of habitats including beaches, savannahs, oak forests and mangrove swamps.

The Cool Activities of the Town

In addition to the beaches of the national Park, the La Cruz region holds bragging rights to a number of leading surf locations. The Bahia Salinas coast excels as a scene to kiteboard and windsurf, second only to the legendary Laguna de Arenal. Other sections of shore provide a variety of opportunities to ride the waves.

After surfing, the town of La Cruz is a great place to relax and watch the sunset over the Pacific Ocean. The area has a laid-back vibe, though a number of good markets and sodas exist in the village.

A short excursion to the fishing village of Puerto Soley is a fine way to spend a day. From this town, a boat takes you out to the National Refuge for Forest Fauna on Isla Bolaños. On this tour there is the opportunity to see charismatic birds such as brown pelicans gliding over the waves and frigate birds flying high in the sky. It is also the only place in the country where the American oystercatcher nests.

La Cruz will appeal to the adventurous traveler looking for adventure and beauty. It is located in a beautiful part of Costa Rica and the extra effort to reach it is rewarded with pristine beaches and interesting wildlife.