After living here for nearly ten years, I find it amazing that I'm still making new discoveries in Costa Rica. Recently my wife and I finally made a trip to see the Nauyaca waterfalls in Dominical. I've had many friends wave about Nauyaca, saying it is one of their favorites places in Costa Rica, after finally making the trip I can now see why it gets so much high praise.
From Jaco Beach, its a very easy and short 90 minute drive. To get to the waterfalls from Playa Dominical, travel 10 kilometers down the road towards San Isidro de Pérez Zeledón, you'll see the office on your right. Once you arrive at the tour office for Nauyaca you'll have the option to begin your hike from there, which is about 5-6 kilometers each way, or you can drive in about a kilometer. All wheel drive is recommended, but we saw several sedans that parked at the river so probably fairly safe bet for those who prefer to shorten the hike. That first kilometer truthfully is the toughest from there its very manageable. While traveling on horseback is a popular option, we preferred to walk the trail on our own. After about 90 minute hike we arrived at the waterfalls and were blown away by its serenity. It is truly majestic, and since we were arrived so early we were fortunate to have the experience in this beautiful spot all to ourselves. We grabbed some snacks and sandwiches and enjoyed the sights and sounds of Costa Rica at its best. There are actually 2 waterfalls, we both preferred the lower one which is swimmer friendly, while the upper waterfall was more of a photo spot. As you can see from the photos, it really is stunning. The other luxury of getting there early is we had the company of a very sweet guide, a local street dog who usually accompany's the mornings first hikers, leading them on the trail the entire time. For more information on the Nauyaca waterfalls go to their website here. If you don't mind the long hike, it's definitely a must do when visiting Costa Rica.
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