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“Wonderful wild place and Florentino is a perfect guide to visit the place”

Gandoca - Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge
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USD 58.00*
and up
Gandoca Manzanillo Refuge Jungle Hike
Certificate of Excellence
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Attraction details
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Reviewed 13 August 2015

I'm agree with all the positive advices. It was my third time in Costa Rica but my first time on the Caribbean coast. I decided to stay at Manzanillo because it was the last village at "the end of the road". And it was perfect; this village near one of the most wild refuge of Costa Rica. Lot of animals, insects, birds... And of course the beautiful landscapes of the beaches all along the path.
Don't miss the first view from the new mirador; its so beautiful (the caribbean coast : wild and beautiful). Forget Tortugero (trap for tourists) and come in the real caribbean mood in the south; from Cahuita to Manzanillo.
My only regret was the snorkeling on the coral reef, not possible because the sea was too much rough (Atlantic !) . But I didn't have a rain in the day during all my stay (incredible for this rainy place).
A paradise to discover the wildlife; with Florentino of course, my personal guide during a trip of 6,5 hours in the refuge. One of the most difficult trek of all my life of traveler (because we walked in an incredible mud during easily five hours/ not usual according Florentino) but also one of the most interesting because Florentino is a real specialist of the local wildlife (he works with scientific in the park). Its incredible how he can see an animal, an insect, a snake... in all these vegetation and he is a real great human being. I don't tell you more, make your own experience of this place and go to Manzanillo !And go to the Maxi restaurant to find Florentino (if he isn't in Europe to visit his families...)

1  Thank gil40100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (135)
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32 - 36 of 135 reviews

Reviewed 14 June 2015

My wife and i came here on a guided hike with Terraventures. We came during the beginning of the rainy season so there weren't very many tourists and we got a private tour. We saw tons of animals including monkeys and sloths, hermit crabs, spiders, frogs, and learned about the various medicinal plants and poisonous trees. The first thing to do upon arriving at the refuge is to take your shoes off and cross a stream that is knee deep. This happened to wash off my bug spray so I got about 25 mosquito bites since it was the rainy season. Be prepared to bring good hiking shoes as there are very muddy sections that are also slippery. you will definitely want to have a guide with you to explain the wildlife, otherwise you will miss out on the best parts. there are a lot of beaches and scenic viewpoints too.

2  Thank Jason C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 June 2015

We (four adults) wandered down to the park one afternoon with no expectations. Drive past the "town," which is really just a few restaurants, to get to the mouth of the river that you cross to get to the amazing views. We walked just inland from the beach and made it to the wooden outlook. What a picturesque setting. The beaches are beautiful, but swimming would be hard because of the reefs, rocks and strong surf. We walked back to the beach on the other side of the river and had a lovely afternoon of bobbing in the gentle waves and snoozing under palm trees.

We talked with a local - Willie - who said he could guide us into the forest, which would be an all-day hike. after reading reviews, we decided we weren't up to the strenuousness of it.

Look for the lady selling empanadas - 2 for 10,000 colones or $2 US - delicious! Goes great with the coconut water Willie sells (same price).

2  Thank pearlwhite
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 April 2015

We had an interesting half day hike with a local guide. The rainforest is just bursting with life. We were lucky to see a sloth, a boa constrictor and a few golden eyelash vipers, as well as a tolomuco! If I were to do it over again I would combine the hike and boating trip to go out and see the dolphins.

1  Thank Zianne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 April 2015

My wife and I were visiting Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge for second year in a row when we were robbed at gunpoint by three masked young men.My wife ended up biting the man with the gun as he dropped it my wife managed to throw the gun into the dense brush. They were still able to take a backpack with all our pictures of the last two weeks but most importantly we are alive and to come to find out the gun was load but misfired so please if visiting Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge pay a little extra for a guide as our trust has been broken.(Policia report has been filed)

17  Thank Rob B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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