Location: between Ario and Coyote beaches in Guanacaste, Costa Rica.
GPS Coordenates: 9.769125, -85.258281 (9°46’08.85″N, 85°15’29.81″W)
Postal Code: 50906
Caletas beach is an isolated beach, part of the Playa Caletas-Ario National Wildlife Refuge since 2006, as its a principally Olive Ridley (Lepidochelys olivacea ) sea turtle nesting beach. It also hosts an important number of one of the world’s most endangered species of sea turtle, the Leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea). Olive Ridley nesting peaks in September and October, while Leatherback nesting peaks in December and January. The beach also receives occasional visits from nesting Pacific Green (Chelonia mydas) and Hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricata) sea turtles.
Caletas beach has a large mangrove swamp around the mouth of the Bongo River and extensive wetlands in the northern sector, which host an abundance of many species of birds (some 50 different species), reptiles and small mammals such as coyotes, skunks and raccoons. Crocodiles inhabit the wetlands, the estuary zones and have also been seen feeding in the mouth of the River Bongo and basking on the beach during the dry season.
Getting to Caletas beach in Guanacaste:
From San José go to Puntarenas and then take the Ferri to Naranjo (we recommend you get to Puntarenas an hour before the ferry leaves). Once you reach Naranjo beach, take the road to Jicaral, left right at San Francisco central plaza and continue northwest to Caletas beach. This route requires a total of five hours from San Jose.
From Daniel Oduber Quiros International Airport (LIR), drive south to Nicoya and from there to Samara passing through Hojancha. Continue South through Islita, Corozalito, Bejuco and Coyote to Caletas beach. It is a very scenic route that exemplifies rural Costa Rica.
Take a local bus from San Jose – Coyote beach, Caletas beach and Bejuco beach, which takes about 6 hours (ARSA, 2258-3883).
You can also take a flight from the Juan Santamaria Airport to the Punta Islita Airport, either with Sansa Airlines or Nature Air every day. From here you can rent a car and drive or take taxi to Caletas beah, which is about 1 hour.