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3 Day Montezuma Itinerary: Top Things to Do and What to Know

Montezuma Beach, 3 Day Montezuma Itinerary, Montezuma Itinerary

3 Day Montezuma Itinerary – Welcome to Montezuma, a hidden gem on the Nicoya Peninsula known for its laid-back vibe, stunning waterfalls, and pristine beaches. This small town, once a quiet fishing community, has transformed into a haven for travelers seeking a blend of adventure and serenity.

Over the next four days, we’ll dive into the best experiences Montezuma has to offer, from early morning yoga sessions with breathtaking views to exploring the vibrant marine life and soaking up the local culture.

Whether you’re here to unwind or seek out adventure, Montezuma provides a backdrop that caters to all. Let’s get started on your unforgettable journey!

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Day 1: Discovering Montezuma’s Charms

Montezuma Beach, 3 Day Montezuma Itinerary, Montezuma Itinerary

Morning: Montezuma Waterfall Adventure

Start your day with an invigorating hike to the Montezuma Waterfalls, a series of three cascading waterfalls just outside the town. The hike can be a bit challenging, but the reward is breathtaking: crystal-clear pools perfect for a refreshing swim. Remember to wear comfortable shoes and bring a water bottle to stay hydrated.

Afternoon: Beach Time and Local Cuisine

After your hike, head back to town and relax on one of Montezuma’s beautiful beaches. Playa Montezuma, with its soft sand and azure waters, is a perfect spot to unwind. For lunch, indulge in fresh seafood or traditional Costa Rican dishes at a beachside café, where you can enjoy the ocean breeze and maybe even spot some wildlife.

Evening: Explore the Town and Enjoy Sunset

As the day cools down, take a leisurely stroll through Montezuma’s quaint streets. Visit local art galleries, boutiques, and the vibrant craft market. As sunset approaches, find a spot on the beach to watch the sky transform into a palette of fiery colors. Dinner can be enjoyed at one of the many restaurants offering everything from international cuisines to local favorites.

Day 2: Immersion in Nature and Culture

Montezuma Beach, 3 Day Montezuma Itinerary, Montezuma Itinerary
Montezuma Beach, 3 Day Montezuma Itinerary

Morning: Cabo Blanco Absolute Natural Reserve

Dedicate your second day to exploring Cabo Blanco, the first national park in Costa Rica. It’s a haven for wildlife enthusiasts and hikers, offering a glimpse into a pristine tropical forest. The reserve has trails of varying difficulty, leading to beautiful viewpoints and secluded beaches. Pack snacks, water, and binoculars for bird watching.

Afternoon: Local Cooking Class

After your morning adventure, immerse yourself in Costa Rican culture by participating in a local cooking class. This is a chance to learn how to prepare traditional dishes such as gallo pinto or ceviche. It’s not only a culinary lesson but also a deep dive into the country’s traditions and a great way to meet locals and fellow travelers.

Evening: Relaxation and Nightlife

Spend your evening unwinding at your accommodation, perhaps enjoying amenities like a pool or spa services. Later, explore Montezuma’s nightlife. The town may be small, but it boasts a vibrant scene with bars and clubs offering live music, ranging from reggae to Latin rhythms. It’s the perfect way to end your day with fun and dance.

Day 3: Discover Montezuma’s Natural Wonders


Montezuma Waterfall Hike: Start your day early with a hike to the iconic Montezuma Waterfall. The trail to the waterfall is a blend of natural beauty and adventure, leading you through lush forests to a stunning three-tier waterfall. The lower falls are easily accessible and offer a perfect spot for a refreshing swim in the natural pools. For the more adventurous, climbing to the upper falls reveals breathtaking views and quieter spots to enjoy the tranquility of nature.


Beachfront Dining: After your hike, head back to town for a leisurely lunch at one of Montezuma’s beachfront restaurants. Enjoy fresh, locally-sourced seafood or traditional Costa Rican dishes while soaking in the ocean views and the laid-back atmosphere of the town.


Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve: Spend your afternoon exploring the Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve, located just a short drive from Montezuma. As Costa Rica’s first protected area, Cabo Blanco is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts and hikers. The reserve offers well-marked trails that lead through diverse ecosystems, home to a variety of birds, monkeys, and other wildlife. The hike culminates at a beautiful, secluded beach, perfect for relaxing and enjoying the untouched beauty of Costa Rica’s Pacific coast.


Sunset at Playa Montezuma: Conclude your day with a visit to Playa Montezuma, known for its spectacular sunsets. The beach’s unique position offers unobstructed views of the horizon, making it an ideal spot for watching the sky change colors as the sun dips below the ocean. After sunset, explore the town’s vibrant nightlife, with a variety of bars and restaurants offering live music and local flavors to end your day on a high note.

Tips for Today

Wear comfortable hiking shoes for the waterfall hike and bring a swimsuit for a dip in the natural pools.
Bring plenty of water and sun protection for your outdoor activities, as the Costa Rican sun can be intense.

Check the opening hours and entry requirements for Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve in advance.
This day combines adventure with relaxation, offering a deep dive into Montezuma’s natural beauty and laid-back lifestyle. Whether you’re chasing waterfalls, savoring local cuisine, or simply enjoying the sunset, Montezuma provides an unforgettable backdrop to your Costa Rican adventure.

Alternate Day 4: Exploring Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve

Here, we outline alternate activities that you might want to add to your original plans in Montezuma, or if you want to extend your experiences. Itineraries are meant to be guides and you should always be open to improvisation or to have space for extra activities!


Start your day early with a trip to the Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve, the first national park established in Costa Rica. It’s located at the southern tip of the Nicoya Peninsula, a short drive from Montezuma. The reserve offers a range of hiking trails that cater to different fitness levels, providing an excellent opportunity to immerse yourself in Costa Rica’s rich biodiversity. Expect to see a variety of wildlife, including birds, monkeys, and maybe even coatis.


After a morning of hiking, spend your afternoon relaxing at one of Montezuma’s quieter beaches, such as Playa Las Manchas. This beach is known for its clear waters, making it an ideal spot for snorkeling.
Evening: Enjoy a leisurely dinner at a local restaurant that offers fresh, locally-sourced seafood. Montezuma has a vibrant dining scene that caters to a range of tastes and preferences.

Additional Activities:

Yoga and Wellness: Montezuma is known for its wellness and yoga retreats. Participate in a yoga class overlooking the ocean or book a massage or wellness treatment to unwind.
Horseback Riding: Experience the area’s natural beauty on horseback with a guided tour that takes you through beaches and jungles.

Quad Adventure: Rent an ATV or join a quad tour to explore the rugged landscapes of the Nicoya Peninsula. This is an exciting way to see the countryside and visit beaches or attractions that are off the beaten path.

Artisan Shopping: Spend some time browsing the local shops and artisan stalls in Montezuma. You’ll find unique handmade jewelry, crafts, and souvenirs that reflect the area’s artistic vibe.

Nightlife: Although Montezuma is a relatively quiet town, there’s still some nightlife to enjoy, especially on weekends. Look for live music performances, beach bonfires, or visit a local bar to experience the town’s laid-back nightlife.

These suggestions offer a mix of relaxation, adventure, and cultural experiences, allowing visitors to tailor their itinerary based on interests and the length of their stay. Montezuma’s charm lies in its versatility, offering something for everyone, whether you’re looking to connect with nature, delve into the local culture, or simply enjoy some downtime by the sea.

For those looking to extend their Montezuma adventure or considering alternative activities, here are some engaging options to enrich your itinerary:

Volunteering at Naciobal Wildlife Refuge Romelia: Get involved in conservation efforts and experience the local wildlife up close. This refuge is particularly focused on protecting endangered turtles and offers a unique opportunity to contribute positively to the environment​.

Swimming at Red Stone Beach: Known for its clear waters and scenic views, Red Stone Beach is a public beach popular for sunbathing, surfing, and enjoying the natural beauty Montezuma has to offer​.

Exploring Tortuga Island: Embark on a full-day tour to Tortuga Island, renowned for its white sands, coconut palms, and turquoise waters. The tour includes a 45-minute boat ride, snorkeling, and lunch on the island, making it a highlight for many visitors​.

Visiting Cabuya: A short distance from Montezuma, Cabuya is a quaint beach town offering serene beaches like Playa Cedros and river swimming spots. It’s a peaceful retreat from the more bustling areas​.

Tasting Chocolate at Indigena Cafe: For chocolate lovers, a stop at Indigena Cafe in Cabuya is a must. They serve ceremonial cacao and homemade chocolate treats, providing a delicious and authentic taste of local cacao​.

These activities offer varied experiences that cater to different interests, whether it’s engaging in conservation, enjoying the beaches, or exploring the natural and cultural offerings of Montezuma and its surroundings.

How to Get to Montezuma

Getting to Montezuma is an adventure in itself, offering a glimpse into the scenic beauty that Costa Rica is famed for. Whether you’re arriving from San Jose, the capital city, or navigating from nearby towns, there are several options to reach this secluded paradise.

📌 Here are our top transportation guides on Going to and Going from Montezuma. We’ve written about Montezuma extensively in our blog.

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From San Jose

The quickest and most straightforward route from San Jose to Montezuma is by flying to Tambor Airport, followed by a short taxi ride to Montezuma. For those preferring the scenic route, a combination of driving and ferry—via Puntarenas to Paquera—unveils breathtaking views and takes you closer to the essence of Costa Rica’s lush landscapes.

By Bus: Direct buses from San Jose to Montezuma are available, providing a hassle-free but longer journey. This option includes a ferry ride, offering a chance to experience Costa Rica’s marine beauty.

Shuttle Services: Various shuttle services offer comfortable and efficient travel directly to Montezuma from major locations, including San Jose, making it an excellent option for those looking for a balance between cost and convenience.

Driving: If you’re up for a drive, the route from San Jose to Montezuma includes a ferry crossing from Puntarenas to Paquera. The drive offers flexibility to stop and admire Costa Rica’s stunning views, making the journey as memorable as the destination.

Local Tip: For an authentic Costa Rican experience, consider the public ferry from Puntarenas to Paquera followed by a local bus or taxi to Montezuma. It’s an excellent way to immerse yourself in the local vibe and enjoy spectacular coastal views.

Before planning your trip, check the latest schedules for ferries and buses, as they can vary seasonally. Also, renting a car gives you the freedom to explore the Nicoya Peninsula at your own pace, but make sure you’re comfortable with rural driving conditions.

Montezuma Accommodations – Where to Stay for Your Montezuma Itinerary

For luxury accommodations in Montezuma, consider “The Anchor Luxury Village” offering garden views, free WiFi, and private parking, located near Montezuma Waterfall. “LALOON Luxury Suites” in Santa Teresa Beach provides an adults-only experience with outdoor swimming pools and luxury suites. Both options offer a blend of luxury and natural beauty, providing exceptional services and facilities for a memorable stay​ (​.

For a luxurious stay in Montezuma, consider options like “The Anchor Luxury Village” and “LALOON Luxury Suites.” These establishments offer top-tier accommodations, with amenities such as free WiFi, private parking, and close proximity to natural attractions like the Montezuma Waterfall. They cater to those looking for an upscale experience, combining comfort with the natural beauty of the area. These accommodations are ideal for travelers seeking a mix of relaxation, privacy, and access to outdoor activities, making them perfect for a luxurious getaway.

For mid-budget travelers, “Casa Frangipani” and “Montezuma Pacific Hotel” offer a comfortable stay with great value. Casa Frangipani stands out for its beautiful views and serene environment, ideal for those seeking peace and nature. Montezuma Pacific Hotel, on the other hand, offers convenient access to Montezuma’s town center, with cozy rooms and essential amenities for a comfortable stay.

Budget-conscious visitors might prefer “Hostel Pura Vida” or “Luz en el Cielo Eco-B&B/Hostel.” Hostel Pura Vida is known for its friendly atmosphere and communal spaces, making it a great option for solo travelers or groups looking for a social vibe. Luz en el Cielo Eco-B&B/Hostel offers a unique stay in the midst of nature, with sustainable practices and a cozy, welcoming environment.

For unique stays, “Ylang Ylang Beach Resort” provides an unforgettable experience with its beachfront location and eco-friendly accommodations. Another option is “El Sano Banano Village Hotel,” which offers a quirky and comfortable stay in the heart of Montezuma, with easy access to local attractions and beaches. Both choices cater to those looking for something beyond the conventional hotel experience, blending comfort with the distinctive charm of Montezuma.

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