11 Reasons We Love Montezuma, Costa Rica

Sweaty, tired, and hungry, our G Adventures group arrives in the small bohemian town of Montezuma. We follow our guide up the dirt road along the beach to Hotel La Cascada. Dropping off our bags, we walk back into town for lunch at Soda La Naranja.

Sixteen of us fill the small café. The two employees quickly get to work cooking and filling drink orders. As our guide finishes chatting with who we assumed was a waitress at the café, we are informed she is a local taxi driver that was eating lunch when we walked in. Knowing the staff would be overwhelmed she immediately started helping by taking orders and waiting tables.

1. Great People and Good vibes

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The streets of Montezuma
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The walls and buildings along Montezuma’s dirt road from Hotel La Cascada into town are decorated with brightly colored murals.
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Montezuma’s holistic lifestyle makes this small town a popular location for yoga retreats and classes.
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The streets of Montezuma

2. Montezuma Beach

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Many small hermit crabs can be seen wandering along the sand. Costa Rica is home to over eight hundred species of hermit crabs, but only about fifteen percent live on land.
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Montezuma Beach
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The calm before the storm in Montezuma

3. Montezuma Falls

Read about our hike to the first of three waterfalls at Montezuma falls here.

4. Tortuga Island

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Read about our forty-five minute boat ride to the island here and if we thought it was worth it.

5. We Felt at Home

We stayed at the family run Hotel La Cascada the duration of our stay. They offered laundry services, a ride anytime they passed us walking along the road, and surfing lessons. Our last night in Montezuma the family organized a bonfire on the beach and a barbecue at the hotel.

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La Cascada, Montezuma
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La Cascada and the now closed into the foreseeable future b. bar, Montezuma

6. Soda Monte Sol

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Our favorite place for breakfast in Montezuma opens at 7:00am, Soda Monte Sol.
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Our last day in Montezuma, we return for one more breakfast of yogurt, fresh fruit, granola, cheese, and delicious banana pancakes at Soda Monte Sol.

7. Butterfly Brewing Company

Before leaving for Costa Rica, we found a brewery online near our hotel. Unsure of the exact location, we begin climbing up a steep, dirt road in search of Butterfly Brewing Company.

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Butterfly Brewing Company, Montezuma

We slowly walk hill after hill. Each larger than the last, the only sign of life is the occasional four wheeler heading into town. Finally, a sign for Mariposario Montezuma Gardens and Butterfly Brewing Company appears over the crest of a hill.

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Butterfly Brewing Company, Montezuma

Drenched in sweat, we sit down at a bar in Clandestina Restaurant overlooking the rain forest and order a flight of the three available beers: Luna Azul, Summerweizen, and Earthquake IPA. There is a small menu of appetizers, salads, and fish. We place an order of tacos ticos and empanadas to share.

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The rain forest trees outside Clandestina Restaurant become illuminated with small green lights at night.
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Our walk back from Butterfly Brewing Company, Montezuma

Finishing our beers, we begin the walk back down the hill. At times our IPhone flashlights are the only sources of light between sparsely placed street lights.

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Soda el Balcon de Mar (left) and a land crab (right) Montezuma

We hear land crabs scattering across the road and burrowing beneath the dry leaves in the nearby banks. During the rainy season, the crabs make the journey to the coast to lay their eggs. The crabs travel in a straight line regardless of obstacles obstructing their paths. Many crabs become trapped in kitchens, bathrooms, homes or killed crossing the road.

8. Cocolores

Located at the edge of town, is hotel and restaurant Cocolores. After walking down the dark path, an ocean side terrace comes into view softly illuminated by hanging lanterns.

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Cocolores, Montezuma
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Cocolores, Montezuma

An ocean side terrace is softly illuminated by hanging lanterns . We follow the beer flow chart and order our corresponding beers: Nazanja, a reddish ale, Osuza, a new Belgium, and Illozena, a brown ale. All are brewed locally on the tip of the Nicoya Peninsula at La Selva Cerveza Artsenanal. The menu consists of Mexican, Thai, Greek, and Italian cuisine.

The ambiance, craft beer, and great vibes may have contributed, but the curry at Cocolores was one of my favorite meals in Costa Rica.

9. Great Pizza

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Bruno’s Pizza, Montezuma

Running out of time, we stop at Bruno’s Pizza. Varieties of pizza can be purchased by the slice and enjoyed in the colorful dining room or on the upstairs balcony.

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Our last lunch in Montezuma is at Chelo Pizzeria. Our delicious thin crust pizzas are accompanied by bread and a spicy dipping sauce.

10. Beach Bars

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Nightly fire show at Chico’s Bar, Montezuma

Chico’s Bar is the center of Montezuma’s night life. There is a circus or fire show almost every night and frequent impromptu dance shows. After our surfing lessons, we enjoy drinks at a table on the beach before returning for Thursday’s reggae night.

11. Surfing

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Read about the hike across three beaches to our first surfing lessons at Playa Grande of Montezuma here.


* For more information on our tour check out: G Adventures Costa Rica on a Shoestring.

  1. Day 1: Fly into San José
  2. Day 2: San José travel to La Fortuna
  3. Day 3: La Fortuna
  4. Day 4: La Fortuna travel to Montezuma
  5. Day 5: Montezuma
  6. Day 6: Montezuma
  7. Day 7: Montezuma travel to San José
  8. Day 8: Fly out of San José

April 2018

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Author: The Traveling Gingerbread

My fiancé, Mitch, and I have been traveling together over four years. Living and working full-time in Pittsburgh, PA, we travel as much as our vacation days and finances allow. We cram each adventure with activities, tours, and experiences to maximize our time. Any time we travel, we try to visit to a local brewery and can't walk by an Irish pub without stopping in for a pint of Guinness. 
 In Tokyo, we laughed every time we saw someone talking on their large, animated phone case. We had to buy one. Having an obsolete IPhone 5, the selection was limited. We purchased a gingerbread off a neglected rack in Shinjuku, Tokyo and The Traveling Gingerbread was born. You can purchase your own adorable gingerbread friend here! The Traveling Gingerbread is an entertaining account of our travels, fun facts, and tips we learned along the way.

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