Playa Cocolito: arena dorada y calma en Bahía Drake

Are you going to visit Drake Bay (Costa Rica) and want to lie down on a calm and golden sand? Cocolito Beach is a great option to spend the day

👉 I tell you how to get to playa Cocolito, what is this beach like, and what to do and where to stay in Drake Bay

Cocalito Beach (Costa Rica)

  1. Cocolito Beach
  2. Where to Stay
  3. How to get to Cocolito Beach
  4. Tours in Costa Rica
  5. What to do near Cocolito beach
  6. Is it a safe place to travel?
  7. Eating Vegan in Costa Rica

Playa Cocolito (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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For those who like quieter and more remote places, Playa Cocolito is an option to stay in the area of ​​Drake Bay instead of choosing Playa Colorada.

It is not far from the main beach, so you will be a short walk (a long long walk) from the restaurants and supermarkets and you can enjoy the peace of the place. It is  on the path that follows the coast, but it is not easy to get there on foot if you go with suitcases, it would be better to enter by sea.

The beauty of this beach is that the rocks divide it into two or three areas and provide more privacy. There would be the central part, with its beautiful lawn to lie down and then another area a little further away with a small stream (these are the images that are seen below).

bahía drake playa cocolito costa rica

The water is a bit strong so it is better to bathe but with caution, and the sand is golden and flat. I spent a good time there the first day I ventured down the path and I was able to enjoy the landscape and the calm of the little beach, it was very pleasant.

Where to stay

The tourist center of Drake Bay is located on 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.

stay at Playa Colorada

  • 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, it seems much the best option to stay in any other beach, where will you be calmer and you will have the sea in front of you.

A location in the center of the trail, it will be very practical for you to make shorter excursions and to be able to visit the beaches of the trail more calmly.

bahía drake playa cocolito costa rica

How to get to Cocolito beach

I’m going to tell you first how to get to Cocolito beach if you’re 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.

Getting to cOCOLITO BEACH from other places

The way to go directly to the beach Cocolito is the same as going to Drake Bay, all you have to do is tell the people on the boat that you are going to Cocolito (you will have to pay extra).

The road is a bit long and you can do it either by bus or by plane (only from San José),  transfer or car.

In this link I leave you all the information to get to Drake Bay from Sierpe, San José, Dominical, Uvita and Quepos; and how to get there from Puerto Jiménez.

That said, I leave you the location so that it is easier for you to find it when you are hiking through Drake Bay.

Tours in COsta Rica

Costa Rica is a country with a wide variety of fauna and nature. You can visit volcanoes, natural parks, towering waterfalls, sunbathe on the beach, kayak,…

I’ll list some of the activities and tours you can enjoy during your trip:

What to do near Cocolito

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.

Caletas Beach

Playa Caletas seemed to me to be one of the best beaches in Drake Bay , and although it has a hotel on the beach itself, it is not noisy at all, but you can easily find yourself alone.

It’s super neat and tidy, and you can swing peacefully on a wooden swing while taking in the views. When I went, I could see two eagles trying to catch a pelican with no luck.

Caño Island

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.

Is it a safe place to travel?

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.

  1. 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.
  2. Before making a tour, always comment that you are vegan or vegetarian, so that they can adapt the food.
  3. 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 time at Cocolito beach and fall in love with Costa Rica!