Last Updated: Aug 19, 2011
Osa Peninsula Snapshot
Summary: One of the country's most remote locales; makes up much of the southern Pacific coastline.
Landscape: Beaches, Lowland Rainforest, Mountains, Rainforest
Attractions: Cano Island, Corcovado National Park
Activities: Bird & Wildlife Watching, Dolphin & Whale Watching, Nature Tours
Caters to: Couples/Honeymooners, Families, Luxury Travelers, Nature Lovers
The Osa Peninsula makes up much of the southern Pacific coastline of Costa Rica. Here, lowland rainforests merge with mountainous terrain and isolated beaches. This patchwork of greenery houses some of Costa Rica's most endangered plant and animal species, and is considered one of the most biologically intense places on earth.
Location: 205 miles from San Jose
Average Temperature: 71-93°F
Altitude: Sea level
There is little development on the
Drake Bay and Puerto Jimenez are two of the most popular destinations on the
The region is lush and green year-round. Even during the dry season months of December through April it still rains – just less than in the rest of the country. Generally speaking, the drier season runs from December until mid-April, with very little rain in January, February and March. It is warm and humid all year, with daily highs in the mid to upper-eighties. March is typically the hottest month and September-October are the rainiest months.
Main Towns on the Osa Peninsula:
Long stretches of undeveloped beaches with lush mountain backdrops make the Carate area one of Costa Rica’s hidden gems. Situated on the southern tip of Corcovado National Park, the tiny village of Carate is a nature-lover's paradise.
This remote part of the
Cabo Matapalo is tucked away at the southern tip of the Osa Peninsula, in one of the most secluded corners of the country. Named after the magnificent strangler figs that populate its forests, the cape is about an hour-long trip from Puerto Jimenez – preferably in a four-wheel drive vehicle. Guests come to Cabo Matapalo to experience raw nature, which is beautifully evidenced by the area’s lush vegetation and abundance of birds and mammals.
A trio of beaches cumulatively stretches for five miles along this part of the peninsula. The northern and most easily accessible shore is called Playa Pan Dulce, or Sweat Bread Beach. Calm waters and inviting sands make Pan Dulce the best place for swimming and sunbathing.
Cradled in the hills above verdant coastline, Drake Bay is one of the most remote and peaceful destinations in Costa Rica. The town, which is situated on the Osa Peninsula’s northern tip, is officially named Agujitas, but is commonly referred to as simply Drake, or Drake Bay. Celebrated for its wealth of natural beauty, diverse wildlife and unique ecology, the area is a must see for eco-travelers.
This tranquil village offers easy access to the staggering amount of wildlife inhabiting Corcovado National Park, which can be reached by boat via the Sirena or Pedrillo Stations in less than an hour. Nearby Cano Island is a biological treasure, located just 12 miles from the mainland. Visibility is almost always great, even on overcast days, allowing snorkelers and divers exciting encounters with sea turtles, large schools of jack and needle fish and white tip reef sharks.
Located on the Golfo Dulce side of the
Sierpe is the mainland gateway to the Osa Peninsula and all its jewels, including Cano Island Biological Reserve, Corcovado National Park and the Terraba-Sierpe Wetlands. The quaint fishing village is also a base for world-class sport fishing excursions into neighboring rivers and the Pacific Ocean. Fantastic diving is just a two-hour boat ride away through the beautiful Terraba-Sierpe Wetlands, the largest mangrove forest in Central America. For its size, Sierpe offers an impressive variety of activities for visitors. Sport fishing expeditions up the Sierpe River to Drake Bay almost always end with a cooler full of fish. Canopy tours, horseback riding and dolphin and whale watching can also be enjoyed in and around Drake Bay, which is about an hour away by boat.
Osa Peninsula Travel Guide
Osa Peninsula Weather
|Wind||3 mph NNW|
|01:02 a.m.||1.48 ft. (0.45 m.)|
|07:19 a.m.||7.87 ft. (2.40 m.)|
|01:28 p.m.||2.23 ft. (0.68 m.)|
|07:38 p.m.||7.68 ft. (2.34 m.)|