Costa Rica – Marino Ballena, Uvita & Dominical

Dominical to Uvita was one of our favourite areas in Costa Rica.  Paradise beaches, refreshing waterfalls, calm village, pleasant places to eat or relax.  Not being in our original plan, Marino Ballena Coast was a welcome surprise!

Whale watching

It’s amazing how nature draws a whale tail at this point on the map! This area is mostly visited for whale watching, as its seeings are frequent. I didn’t go by boat, also because it was low season for whale watching – anyway, I believe I saw one through our binoculars when checking some birds in the seacoast! There are a lot of local operators organizing it if it’s part of your plans.

Dominical to Uvita 

This area is much more harmonious than the contrast I realized before. All the coast looks like paradise. You can drive a long way quite close to the sea, anticipating its white-sand beaches, surrounded by green.

I stayed at Uvita Tropical Beach, a clean and basic accommodation near the beach, with a very pleasant pool that you could use anytime! I spend some time during the night and it was really amazing.

Uvita Beach

Uvita white sand beach is worth enjoying with time. Relax and have a (long) walk when by the low tide having as destiny the whale tail. By this time you can walk there, padding through the waves that come against each other, forming this amazing bay!

Enjoy the sunset on the beach, inside water is extraordinary … but remember to leave before us dark, as no lighting on the beach or surroundings… it will be hard to find your stuff and the way back!


In the Domical area, there are waterfalls worth trying! You can go to a paid park – Nauyaca Waterfalls – or you can enjoy our free of charge discovery.

I spent a good time there, with a refreshing bath, and watching so many different birds that come for the water and insects in this full of life e ecosystem.

Wildlife riverside

Barú river runs down the hills, calming down when reaching flat land. Where the river meets the sea, a wide range of wildlife comes to drink (and find some food!).

From Cafe Mono Congo – see details bellow – you can testify nature at its best, relaxing with a good drink.

Flowing Barú river from the side street, there’s an open place with nice stores, restaurants, bars, handicraft.

Stores, Eat & Drink

Café Mono Congo

Rustic, chill out, river view, relaxed atmosphere. Very good for bird watching; I was there for half-hour and got to see several white ibis, white egrets, and a few others I don’t know the names. If you take binoculars, you can have a compensating morning!

Food and drink variety with vegetarian/ healthy options. Good expresso coffee. Average service, good value for money.


Delicious artisanal ice cream. If, like me, you’re an ice-cream fan, don’t miss it!

Not a lot of different flavours, but very fresh, ideal texture, diversity of flavours and purposeful (no sugar, lactose-free, bio, …).

And a beautiful, beautiful store, where you want to chill for some time while enjoying your ice cream!

Handicraft Store:  Artífice

A beautiful handicraft store. All items are proudly locally made, with high quality and detail. Without a doubt, the best store in Costa Rica. 

From wood to clothes, textiles, beautiful earrings, necklaces, … bikinis, children “stuff” …  you can get all your gifts list done here! Despite not cheap, but the quality and local commitment are worth paying for – very good value for money!

If you’re going to Costa Rica, add this good vibes place in your plan, and you will remain it for long pleasurable moments 🙂


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