A laid-back Costa Rican retreat on the Pacific coast, with breakfastStaying in one of the world’s five Blue Zones – areas where people often live to 100 or more
Sunning at one of the country’s cleanest beaches, according to a major environmental group
Kayaking, fishing or jet- or waterskiing on the Pacific, or watching the sunset over it
Horseback riding, dolphin scouting or admiring local crafts on a tour
An ocean-view room at a hilltop resort overlooking the Pacific and one of Costa Rica's cleanest beaches
Guanacaste meets the mar at aptly named Guanamar Hotel. The getaway in the province’s Hojancha sits on the sands of Playa Carillo, offering you the blissful choice of sticking to land – where there are garden trails to stroll, lined with lush native flora – or jet-skiing and fishing on the waters of one of Costa Rica’s cleanest beaches. (That’s according to the highly regarded Foundation for Environmental Education, which awarded the shoreline Blue Flag status.) When evening approaches, make a similar kind of decision: Pick whether to watch dusk fall over the hilltops or to catch the beautiful sunset over the sea.
Of course, there are other places to pass your time on-site. There's a pool, with its own Pacific views, as well as Marlin bar and Mahi Mahi restaurant. And there are unmissable destinations off-site, too, such as occasionally dolphin-spotted Playa Samara, two miles away, plus a river where you can kayak, mountains where you can horseback ride and a community where you can admire local crafts. Guanamar happens to be in one of the world’s five Blue Zones – places where people live regularly live to more than 100 – and we have a feeling you’ll find this escape pretty restorative yourself.
Air-conditioned accommodations feature a cable TV, a telephone, a private bath and a safe. Ocean View abodes look out over the Pacific, and all rooms are complete with cheerful, beachy décor.
For dinner, head to Mahi Mahi restaurant, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, with sea views, from 6am to 9pm. Cocktails are on hand at Marlin bar, in a thatched palapa-style hut, open from late afternoon until evening.
Costa Rica’s Guanacaste province sits at the tip of the seven-mile Papagayo Peninsula, featuring extraordinary landscapes, with pristine beaches, waterfalls, hot springs, volcanic peaks and rich flora and fauna. This region is a natural wonder, with a variety of adventurous activities, including surfing, fishing and sunset dolphin-watching; you’ll also have plenty of opportunities to relax and soak in the local culture, at quaint villages, wildlife refuges and historic sites.Nicoya, on whose peninsula Guanamar is located, is one of the five Blue Zones in the world – places where people live measurably longer lives than the rest of the population. You’ll likely find this area to feel quite wholesome and restorative yourself, whether trying a watersport on the neighboring Pacific, sunning on the beach (one of Costa Rica’s cleanest, according to the Foundation for Environmental Education) or horseback riding and dolphin scouting on a tour.