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 - 20:00 GMT
Popular Holidays In Costa Rica Browse all
You are sure to marvel at nature's treasures in Costa Rica, a paradise of lush forests, crystal coves, fine-sand beaches and exotic wildlife
- Try snorkelling, kayaking, tennis, bocce ball, chess, access to a scuba clinic & more
- Marvel at Costa Rica's array of stunning settings, including forests, volcanic cliffs, beaches.
- Relish unlimited Costa Rican and world cuisines in 4 and restaurants and 4 bars
Located on the stunning Papagayo Peninsula in Guanacaste
- Activities galore including water aerobics, walks, themed nights, movies, cooking, volleyball, pilates and more.
- 3 romantic wedding packages, all including wedding cake, sparkling wine toast, honeymoon package, and free anniversary nights.
- Ultimate Savings and upgrades for Summer 2019 when booking before 31st January
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 its gems on this in-depth tour with a fabulous beach stay at the end
- Enjoy various activities and exploration on this holiday including river rafting and much more with various optional tours to add
- During this tour you will experience various unique inclusions including a fantastic stay in tented accommodation under the stars in Arenal
The perfect combination of Costa Rican culture and nature with added time for beach relaxation
- Thrills include river-rafting and a guided walk through hanging bridges
- Enjoy a tour with perfect balance of adventure, culture and relaxation sure to make for a holiday to remember
- A relaxing beach at the end stay rounds up the experience offering a chance to recharge batteries
With shimmering white beaches and lush tropical jungle, Dreams Las Mareas Costa Rica is the perfect getaway for the...
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,...
Costa Rica is a tropical paradise with misty volcanoes, wild rivers and verdant jungles teeming with wildlife - it's an...
Embrace the rich diversity of Costa Rica and open your eyes to new experiences as you venture to Costa Rica for a...
With a good choice of amenities and perfect location, Occidental Tamarindo is a brilliant holiday choice for families...