Best Place To Stay In Jaco Costa Rica – Jaco Beach is Costa Rica’s most popular beach due to its excellent surf waves, night diving, and proximity to San Jose. This Jaco accommodation guide caters specifically to families with young children.
Jaco Beach (pronounced hacoh) is located in the Costa Rica state of Puntarenas, about 90 kilometers southeast of San Jose International Airport. Jaco is a highly developed seaside town with busy outlines.
Best Place To Stay In Jaco Costa Rica
The white sand beach itself is a gentle c-shaped curve, about 4 kilometers long. At the south end of the beach there is a beautiful view that spans the entire beach. Jaco is one of the most popular surfing beaches in Costa Rica.
Apartotel Flamboyant, Jacó
Jaco beach is a popular weekend getaway in Costa Rica due to its proximity to the capital. Highway Ruta 27 from San Jose to Jaco is an easy four-lane toll road.
On your way to Jaco Beach, you will cross the Tarcoles River and the famous “Crocodile Bridge” over Carara National Park.
Jaco is known for partying – all-night bars and discos abound, prostitutes are not uncommon (prostitution is legal in Costa Rica), and there is a thriving drug scene.
It is also common to see schoolchildren walking around town wearing their uniforms on their way to school. Jaco has a busy weekend market, great shopping, tons of restaurants, and daily services at the Catholic Church. Jaco has one for everything.
Why Live In Jacó?
For this reason, visiting Jaco is still one of our top stops on every trip to Costa Rica. The south end of the beach is quiet, the markets are full, and our favorite (Paloma Blanca) apartments are there.
Jaco beach is easily accessible from San Jose airport by car, public transport, boat and taxi, and Uber. It is located on the Costanera Highway, about an hour south of Puntarenas and about two hours north of Manuel Antonio National Park.
Finding your way to Jaco Beach is easy using Waze or Google Maps – it’s one of those places you shouldn’t miss. If you fly into Juan Santamaria Airport in the afternoon or evening, you can skip your trip to Manuel Antonio by going to Jaco and spending the night before heading south.
Another great aspect of Jaco Beach is all the activities nearby. You can zip down, hike in the national park, ride a horse, hike and go on ATV tours.
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There are lots of surf lessons and you can take a day trip to the famous Crocodile River boat cruise. Sport fishing is popular in this region and if you keep your eyes on the sky there is always a flock of red parrots roaming around.
Still trying to decide which beach to visit? Check out our 20 amazing beaches in Costa Rica in the Pacific Coast post!
In our family we usually want to be right on the beach – I don’t want to pack up all the kids and beach stuff and come all the way to the beach and then realize we forgot something. Plus, I love being able to run from the beach to my apartment after a beer.
Until then, when looking for a vacation rental in Jaco, be sure to check where the property is on the map. Many places have pictures of great ocean views, and it turns out you’re in a castle two or more miles from the beach. Just look twice.
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Our family also likes to have a pool nearby. The waves in Jaco can be strong and girls love swimming in the pool. When the sun is strong it’s nice to have a pool umbrella to sit and enjoy the warm weather.
Finally, we love to have a kitchen. We don’t like to spend our beach and work time sitting in restaurants, and frankly, service is slow in Costa Rica. That’s why we like to be able to go to the grocery store to get some snacks and a few drinks that we can keep cold in the fridge.
This is my BEST CHOICE for Jaco and the kids and we absolutely love it here. Each apartment is self-contained, but you can find vacation rentals in both Vacasa and Lost Beach Vacations.
All units have air conditioning, a fully equipped kitchen and a terrace with pool and sea views. There are three pools and a kiddie pool, as well as a bay window you can hold.
The 5 Best Luxury Hotels In Jaco (2022)
You literally walk across the street to the beach and this beach area is hardly commercialized and has very few surfers and few rocks.
Almost every restaurant in Jaco will cater to this situation, and there are security guards at all doors to keep guests in and others out. We always order pizza from Rioasis when we stay here.
Choose a unit with a direct ocean view – the sunsets are divine. There is a local equestrian who takes his horses every morning and afternoon, and a surf school sets up shop here. Mirador de Jaco is only 3 minutes away.
Expect to pay between $75-$200 per night, depending on the size of your home and whether it’s high or low season.
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Located at the southernmost end of the beach, this hotel enjoys a beautiful tropical setting. Every place has a 50’s beach vibe to me and everyone who lives there seems really happy every time I go.
The beach has a lawn where guests can relax in chairs with umbrellas and waiters can bring drinks. The restaurant on site looks really good with a good selection of seafood. Rooms have ocean or rainforest views and the pool is oceanfront.
This kid-friendly hotel prides itself on its friendly and efficient service that goes beyond expectations. We haven’t stayed here yet as I’m addicted to La Paloma Blanca, but this is my top pick for our next stay.
Selina is a chain of hostels and hotels in Colombia – there are other locations in Monteverde, La Fortuna, Manuel Antonio and San Jose. They offer private rooms, wifi and co-working spaces, and prices are generally low.
Selina Jaco, Jacó
Jaco’s property is on the beach with a large pool and communal kitchen. They even have rooms for two in the rollers – it would be nice to get two and have parents and teens next to each other.
Selina hotels usually accommodate 20 people, but they also offer the family room at affordable prices. The location is great and there are lots of places to hang out outside of your room. I think it would be a good place for families with teenagers.
This hotel is within walking distance of downtown Jaco. There are many types of rooms, including those with private or shared bathrooms. If you’re on a tight budget, you’ll love the room rates here.
This beachfront hotel costs around USD 100 per night. Includes overnight stay and breakfast. Despite its low price, it feels like a luxury boutique hotel by the beach.
Visit Jaco Beach In Puntarenas Province
Apartments and condos are set around a green pool surrounding the property. There are 8-10 apartments with 2-3 bedrooms used by the owner here.
The apartments have a kitchen, a children’s pool and the hotel is on the beach. It’s about 7 minutes’ drive from Playa Hermosa, north of Jaco, so keep that in mind when booking.
There is a free shuttle to the area and it can be nice to escape the hustle and bustle of Jaco. We haven’t stayed here yet but the hotel is popular with ticos from San Jose for the weekend.
About 15 minutes south of Jaco is the Punta Leona complex. Long a Costa Rican private beach club, Punta Leona also has a luxury hotel with access to two of the country’s most beautiful beaches, Playa Mantas and Playa Blanca.
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Renting a room in Punta Leona comes with a buffet meal of traditional Costa Rican food, and there’s a convenience store right on the beach selling soft drinks, beer and snacks. All-inclusive and à la carte dining options are also available.
There is an on-site à la carte restaurant and getting to the beach is easy – just walk from the pool to the beach. Rooms are within walking distance. This place is located in the middle of a rainforest and has extensive tropical gardens.
Nature lovers will enjoy the hiking trails, hot tubs, tennis courts, butterfly garden, and literally any adventure you desire. The little ones play in the on-site playground. Rooms are simple but clean and have mini fridge, coffee maker, flat screen TV, satellite channels, free wi-fi connection everywhere.
It is just a few minutes’ walk from the hotel rooms to the pool area and open air restaurant. there is free parking