Canoe & Kayak Magazine editor Jeff Maog kayaks across Costa Rica's Golfo Dulce
Costa Rica is a nation that is renowned for its breath-taking natural landscapes and adventure activities, from zip-lining to boarding down the slopes of volcanoes. Jeff Moag, the Editor In Chief for Canoe & Kayak Magazine, recently visited the Central American country to take to the waters of the Pacific Coast by sea kayak to discover its natural delights from a different angle.
Costa Rica is famous for its lush green jungles and rainforests, soaring volcanoes, and two coastlines that face the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. Editor in Chief for Canoe & Kayak Magazine, Jeff Moag, recently visited the Central American country to discover its nature and wildlife by sea kayak.
Jeff started his journey on the outskirts of the capital San Jose where he and his group set off on day-long drive south along the Pacific coast, passing jungle rivers with large crocodiles, along the way. Their destination for the sea kayaking expedition was the Golfo Dulce (sweet gulf) where the gulf and the Osa Peninsula meet, and described by National Geographic as the “world’s largest tropical fjord”.
The group and their guides set up camp overnight on a white sandy beach named Playa Blanca, and the next morning they headed off on sea kayaks, with two inflatable paddle boards in tow. The route involved travelling north along thick forested shorelines to the upper parts of the gulf, then south to the mainland coast, and finally west across the open gulf to the Osa Peninsula.
During the first leg of the journey, the group kayaked through lush estuaries teeming with tropical wildlife such as scarlet macaws, frigate birds, and howler monkeys, then onto a jungle river under cypress trees and deep into a rainforest. Their guide Matias, leads them back to the open water and then to the shoreline where they embarked on the small jungle-fringed beach in a deep cove. On the beach, rustic cabins made out of bamboo and lumber in the El Chontal, eco-lodge awaited them, along with freshwater showers and a garden full of tropical flowers and fauna.
The following morning, many of the kayaking team take part in a special yoga session led by one of the group members in an open-air pavilion. A local naturalist tells them about the area’s beautiful and diverse wildlife including whales, dolphins and sea turtles that are often found in the Golfo Dulce. He leads the group on a walk up a steep hillside into the rainforest where he points out the native species of insects, plants and birds. With more than 124 species of indigenous mammals 375 types of birds, 46 amphibians, and more than 8,000 insect species, Costa Rica is one of the most biodiverse places on earth.
The group head off on their next sea kayaking adventure southwards along the mainland coast, weaving through the Mogos Islands, and passing dense mangrove rivers. They stayed overnight in the rainforest in Saladero, an eco-campsite with traditional lodges built by local craftsmen from sustainable materials.
After a restful night of music, yoga, and paddle barding under the stars, the next morning, Jeff and his group headed off on the final 18-kilometer kayak trip back across the open gulf to Puerto Jimenez on the Osa Peninsula where they were treated to calm waters and a light breeze as they paddled their way to their final destination.
The Osa Peninsula is one of Costa Rica’s most spectacular points with rugged coastline; pristine, deserted beaches; dense green jungles; and the Corcovado National Park where visitors will see hundreds of colourful wildlife species. The peninsula is the perfect place to watch dolphins and whales, and there a several eco-lodges for kayakers, hikers, and nature-lovers.
Talk to a specialist
Call 020 7644 1770 to speak with our award-winning travel consultants.
Opening hours 09:00 - 21:00 GMT
Popular Holidays In Costa Rica Browse all
Go for the thrills and spills of a naturally rich Central American nation, packed with unforgettable adventures and unique encounters.
- Learn more about Costa Rica with the unique experience of the guided hiking tour, Arenal Volcano National Park Nature Walk, Doka Coffee Tour and much more to explore
- Elegant and comfortable accommodations with quality services that will make your trip an unforgettable experience
- Includes a guided hiking tour through the rainforest with a lot of insight about flora, fauna and the volcano's history
Explore the peaceful oasis that is Costa Rica and enjoy various activities that make for an unforgettable holiday
- A journey of discovery to an eco-tourist's dream destination
- Experience canopy walkways through a bridge system and marvel at the world's most amazing and beautiful flora and fauna
- Explore San Jose, Arenal, and the conservation project in Monteverde
Admire Costa Rica's cloud rainforest, climb a volcano, explore verdant grounds on a coffee plantation and relax on a beautiful beach at the end of it all
- Relax and enjoy a beach retreat at Guanacaste after your immersive tour
- Experience Arenal Volcano with its rich fauna and flora
- Enjoy a coffee tour, witness an active volcano and bathe on the Pacific coast
An eco-tourist's dream - embark on an amazing journey of discovery with the perfect combination of comfort and adventure in tropical Costa Rica.
- Explore the amazing country of Costa Rica and discover all it's gems on this in depth tour with a fabulous beach stay
- During this tour you will experience various unique inclusions including a fantastic stay in tented accommodation under the stars in Arenal
- Enjoy various activities and exploration on this holiday including river rafting and much more with various optional tours to add
Explore the tropical paradise that is Costa Rica with it's misty volcanoes, wild rivers and verdant jungles teeming with...
Costa Rica Tropical Adventure allows you to explore the country's many spectacular, natural sights with misty volcanoes,...
The Hidden Jewels of Costa Rica Tour lets you explore the tropical paradise of Costa Rica and all of it's most...
The best holiday experience awaits for you at Palma Real Hotel & Casino in Costa Rica. Located just 5 minutes away from...
Country Inns & Suites in San Jose is located in the middle of everything, close to the shopping and attractions of the...
Located just a short walk from the city's main avenue and downtown, Park Inn by Radisson is a perfect base for exploring...