Ostional National Wildlife Refuge Costa Rica

Written by Peter Conrad
January 31, 2012

I’ve spent some days in Nosara beach with my friends, and I gotta say that I’ve liked this place a lot, especially since it’s hard to get here and we took a short flight from Liberia, so we decided to stay for a few days and enjoy the beauty of the zone. There are flights from San José too, taking 35 minutes to get to the small Nosara airport. There you can rent a car or take a taxi to the town. Your Costa Rica hotel in Nosara could also offer private transportation, so check with your Costa Rica travel agencybefore booking.

Close to Nosara is the Ostional National Wildlife Refuge, surrounded by the amazing Ostional, Nosara and Guiones beaches. It also includes a small town called Ostional, mostly populated by fishers. Another awesome neighbor beach is Azul, north of Ostional. With so many beautiful places so close, we’re excited of being here longer than expected, knowing these breathtaking spots in the Nicoya Peninsula.

Several species of turtles come every year to Ostional to mate and lay eggs, especially during the period between July and December. These phenomena are known as “arribadas”, and the rangers told us, in 1995 there was a record arribada, with over 500,000 turtles nesting at the beach on November of that year, for a period of 5 days. They happen from four to ten times during those months, and observation tours are offered if you want to watch the events.

Getting to Ostional is not as difficult as getting to Nosara. There aren’t Costa Rica hotels in Ostional, so you will have to stay at Nosara or a close town. Costa Rica tour operators offer the watching tour, but you could get on you own by car if you are in any neighbor town. It’s a perfect stop for your Costa Rica family trip: the entry fee is cheap -around $6-, and the kids seemed to be amused by the turtles and all the animals living there.

The best season to go is the dry season, between January and March, and though you won’t see hundreds of thousands of turtles dragging their heavy bodies thru the sand as during the rainy season, it will be easier to get there, and you can still see dozens of thousands of turtles laying eggs.

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