Let's face it, pretty much everyone loves Costa Rica, and no doubt we see travelers from all over the world, but if there is one area that best suited for Costa Rica, I think Texas might be on the top of the list. The reason more than any thing is convenience. Yes, Florida is actually a closer flight, and Costa Rica has seen travelers from Florida for many years now, but thanks to low and competitive fares offered by Southwest Airlines, who last year began flying direct from Houston, Texas might have jumped up to the #1 targeted tourist market. With the short travel time, and now the addition of lower priced flights it is reasonable to see a group come down for a long weekend in Costa Rica for some sport fishing, surfing or just to make a quick relaxing get away. In the past year round trip flights from Houston to Costa Rica have been as low as $280! For those in other parts of the US and Canada, it can be harder to schedule and get away with the longer travel time. I should know, coming from Washington State, I'm more hesitant to schedule trips home or struggle to get friends to make the long and more expensive trip, but getting to and from Houston is a breeze, and we are definitely seeing the difference with many more repeat and spontaneous travelers. No doubt that is leading to an increase in Texans purcashing property in Costa Rica as well. And cmon, why wouldn't you visit Costa Rica if you were that close? Pristine beaches, great food, friendly people, lush tropical vegetation, amazing surfing and fishing, seems like a no brainer to me. So cmon Texans, what are you waiting for? If you need help planning a trip and discovering Costa Rica let me know and I’ll be happy to guide you more.
Jaco's Art Movement Needs YOUR SUPPORT
Recently we talked about Jaco's new art movement. We are excited about the art and music scene emerging in the Jaco community, but in order for us to continue and step it up further we need the support of the entire community. If you OWN PROPERTY IN JACO THEN YOU ARE PART OF THE COMMUNITY and we can use your support. Good news is there is a way you can show your support without donating a dime! If you own property in Jaco, we are asking for owners to donate 1 week of their property sometime during the year so we can offer free accommodations to musicians, performers, artists and publicists to help our movement. Want to give us a week in January? Great! Want to give us a week in October? We'll take it. We are open to all options and will work with what we have. We are working on some fundraising as well, but for now free accommodations is an excellent start in helping us attract some talent to Jaco. INTERESTED IN HELPING? CONTACT David Karr US LINE 509.855.7457 Costa Rica 8718.7216 or email here
Slightly Stoopid, the Reggae Rock group from Ocean Beach/San Diego along with International Artists Thievery Corporation return to the resort city of Jaco, Costa Rica to headline the Seventh Annual Jungle Jam March 9-12, 2017. Featuring four days of continuous music and activities, this year's line-up also includes Stick Figure, Twiddle, Fortunate Youth, Hirie, Mike Love, Rob Garza (DJ set,) Congo Sanchez, Organically Good Trio, Sonombulo, Santos Y Zurdo. Matt Carey, and Selecta Coco.
From daytime beachfront venue performances to late night shows, music will fill the town beginning on Thursday March 9, as the festival kicks off with an intimate artist showcase and traditional Costa Rican barbeque for VIP ticket holders. Main-stage performances run Friday, Saturdayand Sunday.
The one-of-a-kind music and camping festival is set to take place in the heart of downtown Jaco, the popular Costa Rican surf town. "Jungle Jam has a lot more going for it than your everyday music festival," said festival producer Eric Freitas. "Picture gorgeous sun-drenched beaches, stunning sunrises and sunsets. Add in lush jungles filled with a colorful variety of wildlife, from capuchin monkeys to scarlet macaws. Jungle Jam operates on the guiding principles of 'Pura Vida,' that life is damn good, so let's get out there and enjoy all that it has to offer!"
Each day at Jungle Jam starts with live music yoga on the beach. Then, attendees are encouraged to engage in one of the spectacular eco tours, sport adventures and excursions available, from zip line adventures across the rain forest to a boat cruises to see crocodiles. Attendees can take surfing lessons or a trip to Manuel Antonio National Park. There is simply no better way to experience Costa Rica up close, often with the festival performers right next to you.
Early bird tickets are sale now through December 21 with weekend passes starting at just $150 and includes weekend entry to the festival grounds and general camping. VIP packages start at just $300 and includes exclusive access to select after-hours concerts and other special events along with a variety of perks. Lodging, ground transportation, and meals can all be added on to all VIP packages.
Get your tickets here.
Many in the Jaco Beach community have made a concentrated effort the past couple years to help bring more art to the area. Since Jaco at its core is a small surfing town it appears a little local street art is fitting in perfectly and is starting to give Jaco a more inviting and hip look that the local community is welcoming and embracing. Much of this is lead by Artify Jaco, a group helping to beautify Jaco through artistic murals, street art & installations, festivals, and music. Earlier this year saw the addition of painted wings on buildings throughout Jaco, where visitors can grab a fun photo posing as if they had wings. And it doesn't stop there; many local restaurants and bars are beginning to follow making more of a focus on the arts. One restaurant, the Green Room, features live music every night of the week. This has really created a culture of live music here, that is spreading throughout the town. And has created a collaborative vibe amongst the musicians which continues to grow the music scene! The Tico Pod Art House has been one of the biggest supporters and helped bring many of these artists to Jaco. Tico Pod continues to offer weekly painting classes and various workshops throughout the year.
It is exciting to see the energy and vibrancy coming to the area and encourage you to enjoy some of this excellent local art. And if you are looking to take a little piece home with you we encourage you to check out the Tico Pod Art House, where you can find the best local art in Jaco.
Originally posted here
Jaco vacation rentals over Christmas break can be very difficult to find if you don't book well in advance. Chances are that if you don't have a reservation booked for those dates by now you'll be hard pressed to find one. Christmas week in Costa Rica is a time when many Costa Rica families travel to the beaches, making it one of the busiest times of the year in Jaco. Jaco Beach hotels and condos are usually booked to full capacity for that week, specifically the tail end of that week with New Years being the most prime. Jaco Beach features a very popular and exciting New Years celebration on the beach, with many developments and hotels each featuring their own firework display. If you are traveling during those dates here are some additional tips to consider.
Dont Wait to rent a Car
Jaco hotels and condos are full that week, also full with reservations are the car rental agencies. With so many people traveling during this busy week it is not uncommon for the car agencies to not have any car rentals available, so definitely be sure to reserve well in advance.
Be Aware of Traffic and Reroutes
Getting to and from Jaco during Christmas week can be a nightmare. Traffic on certain days can turn a 90 minute ride from the airport into nearly 4 hours! There are often closed lanes and rerouting as well, so it is important you plan ahead, learn about any traffic advisories and adapt accordingly.
Plan For busy restaurants
In the San Jose area, many stores and restaurants will be closed during the holidays, but at the beach its just the opposite with almost everything being open those days. Restaurants though will be busy, and if you have a large group it's a good idea to make reservations before going out.
Stockpile some cash
Credit cards and debit cards are pretty much accepted throughout Costa Rica, but if you like to use cash go ahead and get that before you come down. Banks have erratic hours and long lines during that week, its easier just to bring cash down with you. You can see more travel tips on cash and currency here.
Have some Patience and Enjoy the Pura Vida
Like we say, Christmas week is a busy time of year in Costa Rica, but it is also one of the best times to visit. The weather is beautiful, and while it is busy, it is fun to see so many families out. Remember just to be a bit patient and take some satisfaction in knowing that while your friends back home might be stuck in the cold and snow you are wearing flip-flops at the beach in Costa Rica!
Halloween in Jaco is definitely one of the best times to go out. While there are a number of places that have Jaco Halloween parties and events there are really two that standout as the most popular. For children and families, the Los Suenos Resort features a fun and safe trick or treat trail where kids can get a good experience of the American trick or treating tradition.
For adults, the party gets bit wilder at night with the most popular local spot being the Backyard Bar in Hermosa. Expect to see everyone there in costume, Backyard always features a solid prize but more than anything bragging rights for Jaco's best costume.
The Central Pacific region of Costa Rica is one of the most visited and popular areas in Costa Rica, but unfortunately many people fail to explore areas other than Jaco Beach and the Los Suenos Resort. While Jaco is clearly the hub of the Central Pacific and the primary focus of the regions marketing, there are some areas in the Central Pacific off the beaten path that remain somewhat undiscovered.
One of those areas is Esterillos. Esterillos is a quick 20 minute drive south of Jaco and features some of the most beautiful beaches in the region. Its lighter, soft sands and long beach lines are often deserted, providing the feeling that travelers are left to themselves on their own private beach.
With no large resorts, no paved roads, and no big anchor hotels, the area provides more of the traditional Costa Rica village vibe that many travelers still seek. Esterillos beach is divided into three areas, Esterillos Oeste (West), Esterillos Centro (Center) and Esterillos Este (East), followed by neighboring Bejuco, a very small beach village that often is included when speaking of Esterillos. Each area has a little different feel.
Fishing & surfing
While there is no shortage of fishing and surfing in the Central Pacific, Esterillos is no exception. Consistent waves and less crowded beaches make it a favorite spot for diehard surfers, in fact the The World Surf League (WSL), the sport’s international sanctioning body, will hold the Costa Rica Pro men’s and women’s qualifying series event from Oct. 5-9 at Esterillos Este.
Fishermen also love Esterillos for the in-shore fishing that is available. Panga boats and crew are available at a fraction of the cost of the charters out of the Los Suenos marina. Red snapper, snook, sea bass, mackerel, tuna, and barracuda are all commonly caught. Happy fishermen often take their caught fish to one of the local restaurants where they are happy to prepare and cook for them.
Other activities in Esterillos
With its long stretches of beach, the area is also very popular for horseback rides along the beach, while the mountains to the East make for some excellent hiking, biking and ATV trails. Esterillos is still plenty close to all of the local tour activities. Canopy tours, monkey tours, waterfall rappelling, rafting are all nearby.
Food in Esterillos
And let’s not forget that any hidden gem can't truly be a gem without having some great local food. One of my favorite restaurants in the area is located Esterillos Oeste. Los Almendros features an authentic Costa Rican Caribbean cuisine and fresh local seafood. Truthfully I love everything on the menu, but their Carribbean stew chicken and spicy plantains are probably my top recommendations.
Head a little farther south to Esterillos Este and you'll find a couple more great restaurants right on the beach. The Pavillion, located in the Alma de Pacifico Hotel is a beautiful beachfront setting with excellent food, while the neighboring Pelicano is great for dining or grabbing a couple beers and watching the sunset right on the sand. The new Esterillos Town Center also features some great new restaurants that visitors should check out.
Living in Esterillos
The area continues to be an excellent option for retirees and snowbirds seeking a second home. Properties and land are much more inexpensive than the more populated areas of Jaco and Hermosa. One of my favorite communities is this one here which features single family homes in a gated community just a short walk to one of the most beautiful beaches in the area. These furnished beach homes start as low as $230,000 and are hands down one of the best values in the area.
Are you convinced yet? Spend a little time in Esterillos and I'll think you'll agree that it is truly a hidden gem. If you are ready to explore a bit more Contact David
By David Karr, your Jaco Beach, Los Suenos Resort and Esterillos real estate specialist. Originally from Washington State, David Karr has been living and working Costa Rica real estate in Jaco Beach since 2006.
ORIGINALLY POSTED HERE
One of the first highlights travelers have when visiting Jaco Costa Rica, is what many refer to as the Crocodile Bridge in Tarcoles. About 30 minutes before arriving to Jaco, travelers pass over the Tarcoles river where you'll pass onlookers on the bridge taking pictures and checking out this popular tourist attraction. Just underneath the bridge you will typically see anywhere from 10-30 crocodiles all posing for photos and hoping to catch a dangling and falling tourist! The Tarcoles bridge is a popular stop for many, with a few restaurants located right after the bridge, often travelers make the quick stop to walk the short bride, check out the crocs, take some photos, grab quick bite to eat and then continue on their way. The Crocodile Bridge was recently featured on Animal Planet, it's definitely a highlight when visiting Jaco and encourage everyone to check out.
For those who want a more up close look, we highly recommend the Crocodile tour, where you travel the Tarcoles river and witness guides feeding the crocs just feet away from you. You can learn more about the Tarcoles Crocodile Tour here.
The Esterillos area recently welcomed the opening of a new commercial plaza called The Town Center of Esterillos, located in Bejuco. The Town Center is very exciting news to the growing communities of Bejuco and Esterillos, providing a number of services to those in the area. One of the big draws is the Centers' Fitness Gym where local residents have been quick to sign up. Beach Body Gym features all brand new weights and equipment, with full air conditioning and group classes like Zumba.
The plaza also features what is now the largest grocery store in the area, ideal for residents and vacationers of the area. A number of restaurants are already open, covering a number of different cuisines like Italian, Mediterrian and of course Costa Rican. A nail and hair salon is already open as well, with many more services and restaurants to coming soon. The Town Center also features residential apartments above the commercial space, with one bedroom and two bedroom condos available for long term rentals.
The Town Center of Esterillos is located just off highway 34, just across the entrance into playa Bejuco. This new commercial development is part of some bustling growth in the area. One project directly across the Center is nearly complete, delivering 500 homes and condos, catering towards the local Tico market, as more and more Costa Ricans seek second homes and Costa Rica vacation properties near San Jose. Meanwhile sales in established communities in the area have been hot, with one development seeing nearly 30 sales in the past 18 months and another new project selling out another 30 condos.
With this kind of activity and development it is clear why now is an excellent time to consider real estate in the Bejuco and Esterillos area. For those who are looking for a home in the area, this new beach home below in the Costa Del Sol community is definitely worth checking out.
Finished just a few weeks ago, the 2300 square foot home features its own private pool, 3 large bedrooms, 3 full baths, a gorgeous living and kitchen area that is perfect for entertaining guests, along with a single car garage. Custom cabinetry, crown moldings, granites and extended outdoor living space make it the perfect home for those wanting a piece of Costa Rica with the construction quality and finishes found in the U.S. and Canada. The home comes furnished, ready to move in.
This popular gated community has become quite a popular destination for vacationers and retirees. Community amenities include 24 hour security, maintenance of all of the common area green space & pools, BBQ Rancho with Internet service and maintenance of the private homes lawns and hedges. A short walk to the beautiful beaches of Bejuco and Esterillos Este, and of course now a short walk to the new town center. Please contact me if you would like more info on this home or other properties in Bejuco and Esterillos
The 2016 Los Sueños Signature Triple Crown tournament "kicked it up a notch" and ended with a "BAM!
"Quoting celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse, who recently fished out of Los Sueños, best describes the events that took place last week during the third and final leg of the 2016 Los Sueños Signature Triple Crown Series.
Boats reported between 70 and 100 billfish releases per boat just days before the start of the third leg of the tournament. Expectations were high and the dock was buzzing. On the first day of Leg II in February 1,103 fish were released. Although that number was not outdone this leg, the fish were here, there and everywhere; they were just too full to take the bait. At the end of Day One 651 billfish, including 2 marlin, were released. That is more than one fish per minute or an average of 15 billfish per team. "Kind of a slow day." Really? Words one only hears in Los Sueños! By the afternoon of Day 3 though, the fish were hungry and attacked en masse. All told, there were 6,570 fish released by an average of 43 boats over the nine days of competition that made up this year's Signature Triple Crown. Last year's all-time record of 5,732 fish was beat by 838 fish with an average fish to boat ratio of 51. Where else, we ask?
Day One ended with an exciting finish, Tarheel winning over Agitator on time, each with 2,800 points (28 sails) and only 5 minutes between them. Agitator who placed 2nd in Leg One and 1st in Leg Two, was able to move even further ahead in the running for Series Champion.
Day Two brought a reversal of fortunes. A total of 460 billfish were released during the eight hours of fishing. When lines out was called at 4:00 pm Agitator had relegated Tarheel into second place for the tournament win. Sea Angel had a great day moving up to third position after having placed 14th at the end of Day One.
Day Three was not only the last day of the tournament but also the final day of the Triple Crown Showdown. The day started off promising with 80 billfish released during the first hour. As time progressed things slowed down a bit. At 1:01 pm though, Jaruco called in a quintuple (5 fish released at the same time) and initiated a hail storm that continued past lines out! While doubles, triples and quadruples are commonplace in Los Sueños, quintuples are still considered a special event. At 1:33 pm another quintuple was called in by Jaruco. A third was called in at 1:37 pm by Blue Eagle, then another by Wire We Here at 2:10 pm, followed by Plan B at 2:41 pm, Fish Tank at 2:55 pm, Uno Mas at 3:04 pm, and Pelese two minutes later. In the end there were 10 quintuples and 15 quadruples, not to mention an uncounted number of doubles and triples, radioed in to Control between 1:01 pm and 4:11 pm. A total of 455 billfish were released in the same period. BAM! Pelese who had a slow start in the morning with only 4 fish by noon, released 38 billfish in the last hour and a half. Jaruco released 43 billfish, the highest number of releases in a single day during the entire Series.
One could not have asked for a more exciting finish of the third leg of the 2016 Los Sueños Signature Triple Crown tournament. With this amount of fish anything was possible until the very end of the competition. All set and done Agitator dominated winning First Place of the Third Leg and was crowned Series Champion, Pelese having an incredible come back after Day One took second place and Sea Angel took Third Place. A total of 1,855 billfish were release during the Third Leg of the Series. Overall during the 9 days of competition 6, 570 billfish were released kicking it up 832 "notches" compared to 2015.
Click here for Los Suenos fishing charters.