Are you going to visit Drake Bay (Costa Rica) and would you like to visit Caletas beach? It is a very nice stop on the trail and you cannot miss it
👉 I’ll tell you what is playa Caletas like, how to get there (bus, plane, car and transfer), where to stay and what to do in Drake Bay
Caletas Beach (Drake Bay)
- Caletas Beach
- Where to stay
- How to get to Caletas beach
- Tours and activities in Costa Rica
- What to do nearby Caletas beach
- Is it a safe place to travel?
- Eating Vegan in Costa Rica
Caletas Beach and Drake Bay
If you are planning a trip to Costa Rica (👉COSTA RICA GUIDE), you should know that it is a country characterized by the beauty of its beaches, mountains, volcanoes and the diversity of its wildlife.
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Drake Bay is an inaccessible destination located in the south of Costa Rica. Its main attraction is its wild and incredibly preserved beaches. It is a perfect destination if you are passionate about the sun, the sea, wildlife and hiking, and especially if you are looking for a little adventure!
In addition, Drake Bay is one of the best known accesses (along with Puerto Jiménez) to visit the CORCOVADO National Park.
In Drake Bay itself you can also go on a night hiking or watch birds in their natural environment. Without forgetting about SNORKELING in Isla del Caño and, for the most daring, you can go DIVING between columns of corals!
Caletas Beach (Costa Rica)
Caletas is one of my favorite beaches of the trail that follows the coast of Drake Bay. It is a very quiet beach with a well-kept landscape, since there is a hotel right there that takes care of it.
It is important to know that, although there is a place to stay on the beach itself, there are no sun loungers or beach bars. It’s all very natural, relaxing and pleasant.
As in the whole area, the water is strong and covers you easily, so it is better to be careful if you go with children or animals.
That day I found a super nice puppy along the way that he decided to accompany me and we ended up taking a dip together. Although the poor guy was a little scared at first to get into the water because of the waves, in the end he decided to venture out to cool off for a while.
Keep in mind that even if you swim, it’s best to stay close to shore like Gossi and I did.
In Playa Caletas itself there is a corner with two swings from where you can see the sea and the entire beach, the view is that which appears in the following image.
I loved getting on the swings and jumping off the nearby rocks, since apart from the landscape you can also enjoy the fauna: eagles perch on those trees! Es incredible to watch them for a while and see how they prepare to hunt or fly after birds that seem huge next to them.
In general, in Costa Rica there is a lot of fauna and being able to see them up close when you least expect it is an experience totally unique.
Where to stay in Drake Bay
The tourist center of Drake Bay is located in Playa Colorada. There are different hotels and hostels, two supermarkets and a restaurant to eat. Although there is everything you need for day to day, the offer in restaurants is not very extensive either.
The only place where you are not allowed to stay is Isla del Caño; since it is a biological reserve and there are no hotels on the island itself.
Staying at Colorada Beach
- In the case of Drake Bay, I think the only reason it’s worth staying near the tourist area is if you need a supermarket nearby.
- In addition, it has the disadvantage that most of the accommodations are not located on the beach itself but on a road that goes uphill (it is ugly).
Staying at another beach
If you want to spend just a few days in the area, I think it is a much better option to stay on any other beach, where you will be calmer and have the sea right in front of you.
A location in the center of the path will be very practical for shorter trekkings and to be able to visit the beaches of the path unhurriedly
In the specific case of Caletas beach, I think it is one of the best locations to stay, since the beach is beautiful and quiet and invites you to stay.
How to get to Caletas beach
I am going to tell you first how to get to Caletas beach if you are already in Drake Bay, and below how to get there from different parts of Costa Rica.
How to get there From Playa Colorada (Drake Bay)
It can be reached on foot by following the coast along the path (it’s very pretty and I recommend it), and the level of difficulty is low, since the terrain is flat and the path is well marked.
If what you want is to do the path calmly, and enjoy the beaches that you find along the way, I recommend that you take the boat that leaves from Playa Colorada and arrives at San Josecito, and from there you make the back little by little.
They have stipulated times to come and go (ask at the hotel or at Playa Colorada). One way will cost you about US$10 and the whole journey is about US$20.
How to get to Drake Bay
The road to Drake Bay is a bit long and you can do it by bus, plane (only from San José), transfer or car.
How to get to Dake Bay from SAN JOSÉ
You can get to Drake Bay from San José in three ways: TRANSFER (👉 PRICES), plane and bus. The journey by road takes about 6 hours and 30 minutes; and, if you decide to go by air, the flight lasts 50 minutes.
Here you will find detailed information to get to Drake Bay from San José, Uvita, Dominical and Sierpe.
How to get to Drake Bay from PUERTO JIMÉNEZ
You have two ways to make the journey from Puerto Jiménez to Drake Bay and vice versa: by TRANSFER (👉PRICES) or by bus.
In the case of the transfer, you can do the tour in two hours. If you choose to go by bus, the journey will be longer, since you will have to change at La Palma.
Here you will find detailed information to get to Drake Bay from Puerto Jiménez.
Best time to visit Drake Bay and Caño Island
Drake Bay is located on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica. In this area the seasons are divided into the dry season (from December to April) and the rainy season. With heat peaks between November and March.
If you are interested in snorkeling or diving in Caño Island, the conditions are better during the warm season. Since the rainy season takes place from May to November and the visibility to enjoy the underwater life gets worse.
In order to better decide when to visit Drake Bay, you have to know that the whales arrive in Costa Rica twice a year: from July to November, and from December to March. It is an ideal time to plan your trip and observe these incredible animals in their natural habitat.
Useful stuff for your trip to Costa Rica
Below, you will find some products that will be very useful during your trip to Costa Rica.
In addition, the options that I recommend are committed to the environment/social causes and are vegan.
Carrying a waterproof windbreaker in your suitcase is essential in case temperatures drop, it rains unexpectedly, or to go hiking.
When traveling, it’s important to choose a jacket that is lightweight, takes up little space and that you can use in different situations; that is to say, that transpires, is waterproof and has a hood to protect you properly from bad weather.
Gopro 11 Black
The GOPRO 11 (👉 PRICE) is a great choice if you are visiting natural areas, practicing adventure sports or want to make videos underwater, e.g. while scuba diving or snorkeling.
In addition, with its stabilization and Horizon Lock function, it will allow you to make incredibly stable videos even in adverse situations (such as walking, running or riding a motorcycle). In addition, it comes with an amazing 5.3k image quality.
👉 GOPRO 11 PRICE + specs
3-in-1 hiking shoes
These La Sportiva shoes are designed to run in the mountains, thanks to this you can use them for hiking, go out to run and do tourism ; saving space in your suitcase.
They are made with goretex, which means they protect you from the inclement weather weather (such as rain, ice or cold) and are adherent to the ground. This makes them ideal for traveling due to their versatility.
Tours in Costa Rica
Costa Rica is a country with a wide variety of fauna and nature. You can visit volcanoes, national parks, towering waterfalls, sunbathe at the beach, go kayaking,…
There are different TOURS and ACTIVITIES that you can do during your trip, and that will help you to access places and learn things that would cost you more on your own. Here are some for you to make the most of your stay:
What to do near Caletas beach
The main attraction of Drake Bay and its surroundings are the paradisiacal beaches, the fauna, and scuba diving and snorkeling. I’ll tell you about some of the places and activities you can’t miss during your stay.
Playa Cocolito is one of the beaches on the trail, and it is quite quiet. It is divided in two by a small stone wall and provides a little more privacy.
There is a grassy area to lie down where people usually gather, and it has a hotel where you can spend the night.
Isla del Caño is a protected park that is located just off the coast of Drake Bay .
Snorkeling tours are organized (US$70) and diving (2 dives for US$135) and a short stop is made on the island.The seascape is very pretty, it is full of towering columns of coral.
Warning: this is not a type of snorkel that I would recommend to people who are afraid of deep water, since you will be swimming in the open sea and the depth is about 10m.
Río Claro (River)
Río Claro is located on the Drake Bay trail, and flows into a beautiful beach where turtles nest.
There is a small refuge there that accepts volunteers to work with the sea turtles, and if you stop by around 4 in the afternoon, you can also see the release and make a small donation.
The people at the refuge also organize boat trips on the river to finance their expenses and, when the tide is high, they can cross you to the other side for a small fee.
San Josecito Beach
The San Josecito beach is located at one of the ends that runs along the coast. It is a good place to have a picnic and rest while hiking. Also, you will find fresh coconuts! (in this link I tell you how open coconuts with your own hands).
In the area of San Josecito + Rincón de San Josecito there are several accommodations and restaurants where you can eat. Compared to Playa Colorada (the main beach), it is a nicer and quieter option to spend the night.
Costa Rica is a moderately dangerous country, where nothing should happen to you if you go carefully and take precautions. Remember to follow these recommendations:
- In case of robbery, do not resist physically.
- Do not show a high purchasing power, that is, do not go with jewels, bags, etc … that are expensive.
- Be careful if you go out at night, and stay in crowded places where you are surrounded by other people.
- Thefts are usual, so don’t go with the camera or mobile in your hand or hang out of your neck.
- Try to avoid carrying the backpack on the back. Put it in front of you, or use a belt pouch or a cross bag.
Personally, I spent 3 months traveling alone in Costa Rica (I visited San José, Puerto Viejo, Tortuguero, Dominical, Uvita, Bay Drake and Puerto Jiménez) and I did not find myself in any really serious situation.
Going down the street with the camera, several Costa Rican people approached and warned me that they were carefully with robberies, since they told me that they are very frequent.
In my case, during the trip they tried to steal 2 times and, luckily, I realized on time and I could avoid it. In any case, it is always a good idea to have travel insurance that can compensate you financially and help you if a medical emergency occurs.
👉 If you are interested in traveling alone, I recommend this article about the reasons and benefits of traveling alone and this other article with tips for traveling alone being a woman. I encourage you to try it since it is a great and very profitable experience for oneself.
Eating Vegan in Costa Rica
Costa Rica is not a country faced with vegan food. Anyway, they have some traditional dishes that are vegan or that you can ask without egg or sauces such as the pico of rooster (rice with beans for breakfast), black bean soup or rice with vegetables.
You should always ask if the purés or soups are made with some type of dairy product or meat broth, since at first glance they might seem vegan dishes but not be.
In San José you can find some vegan restaurants, but when you leave the capital the offer is very limited or non -existent. Next, I make three recommendations and in this link you can read tips to travel vegan.
- Try to stay in hotels that are characterized by cooking vegan and vegetarian dishes. This is the best option and the most practical for not having to be looking for places where to eat comfortable without always repeating the same dishes.
- Before going on a tour that includes a meal, always mention that you are vegan or vegetarian, so that they can adapt the food.
- Costa Rica is a country where you can find a variety of fresh products (fruits and vegetables) to prepare salads and breakfast with fruits. In any city or town, you will easily find some supermarket or stalls on the street where you can buy groceries.
I hope you have a great stay and enjoy Playa Caletas to the fullest!