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Cabuya, Costa Rica

Cabuya Island surrounded by water

Cabuya Island

Cabuya is a quaint fishing village that stretches along the southwest part of the Nicoya Peninsula until the border of the Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve, the first protected area in Costa Rica.

This off-the-beaten path village sits at the tip of the stunning Nicoya Peninsula. Cabuya is easily accessed from Montezuma via a 20-minute car or bus ride along a rugged dirt road. Populated by a tight-knit community of Ticos and expats, it is a hidden gem; the ideal spot to venture away from the crowds. The tourism infrastructure is less developed, with far fewer hotels, and the people who live there or visit like it this way.

The town hosts a few restaurants, two supermarkets, a bakery and a bar, and for many people, Cabuya is the closest thing to paradise they have been able to find in Costa Rica.

It is an amazing place with a natural monument found close by the bridge over the Rio Lajas: the HiguerĂ³n de Cabuya, a huge strangler fig with a diameter of around 22 meters. It is believed to be the largest strangler fig in all Costa Rica.

Hiking north along the scenic, lonesome beach brings you to the estuary of the majestic Rio Lajas. A lagoon has formed at the estuary which is good for swimming. You can also wade through the river upstream to find natural jacuzzis in the rocky river bed and watch a multitude of birds like egrets, herons, kingfishers and ducks.

At low tide you can walk across the natural causeway, over the rocks, to Isla Cabuya, a cemetary island still used as a burial ground. The reef on the extreme tip of the Cabuya Island is a great spot for snorkeling. Even without snorkel equipment, you can see colorful fish in the rocky tide pools.

Cabuya and Howler Monkey beach and water

Howler Monkey Hotel beach

two ducks on rocks and water

Ducks at the Rio Lajas estuary

two fishing boats on rocks

Cabuya Island causeway

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