Uvita, is a town on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica. Close to the surf down of Dominical and the national park of Manuel Antonio, Uvita makes an excellent base from which to explore the stunning coast. Read on to find out where to stay in Uvita.
How to get to Uvita
From San Jose, you can easily take the public bus to Uvita. There is a bus that travels along the Pacific Coast from San Jose which calls into Dominical and Uvita. Tracopa bus company runs a regular service from San Jose to Uvita and back again. This takes around 4.5 hours and costs around $10.
You may need to book in advance, either at the bus station in San Jose or online. We found it best to book ahead, either the night before or earlier in the day. We tried to turn up to get the bus once but were told it had sold out, so this is something to be mindful of when travelling by bus in Costa Rica.
Buses leave from Tracopa LTDA Bus Terminal in San Jose. Google Maps link here.
We used BookAway in Costa Rica, and elsewhere when we travel to book any buses needed in advance.
If you are driving to Uvita, the distance is around 220km on fairly decent roads.
Where to stay in Uvita: 5 Fun Places
When travellers refer to Uvita, they are actually referring to the area near Ballena National Park, as well as Uvita town itself. The “town” is actually not by the beach or National Park, in fact, it is spread out around a quite busy main road.
Choosing where to stay in Uvita will therefore dictate your experience quite considerably. If you have access to a car, then it is easier to explore the whole of Uvita regardless of where you stay. But if, like us, you are reliant on walking and public transport, then getting the location of your accommodation right is important.
Here’s our list of the best places to stay in Uvita.
Where to stay in Uvita close to Ballena National Park
Arboura Eco Cabins
The Abroura Eco Cabins are super fun! They are a range of cabins, either in A frame style lodges or converted storage units. We stayed here in 2022 and really enjoyed the vibe – especially the free yoga mats, swimming pool and table tennis table.
The other incredible thing about this accommodation, is the proximity of the beach. The beach and the national park are a stones throw away. A perfect place to stay if you want to wander down to the ocean and enjoy a few beers watching the sunset.
Budget: Booking.com has rates of around $60 for two for a studio in Arboura Eco Cabins.
Best for: Romance and escapism
Where to stay in Uvita near to the waterfall
Cascada Verde Hotel
There are a number of accommodation options near to the waterfall in Uvita. If you’re keen to visit this, then you may wish to pick a place to stay near it. Many of the accommodation options are extremely expensive, upwards of $1000 per night. As an alternative, Cascada Verde Hotel is a much more budget appropriate accommodation option.
This popular hotel has an 8.7 on Booking.com and guests love the atmosphere and view.
Budget: Booking.com has rates of around $30 per couple for one night.
Best for: Keen hikers looking to visit the waterfall in Uvita
If you do choose to stay in this area, be sure to check out the Whale Tail brewery. This was one of our favourite breweries in Costa Rica.
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Tucan Hotel is around 1km from the waterfall, but around 5km from the Ballena National Park. However, most guests love the location. With an 8.7 rating on Booking.Com, guests also love the courtyard layout of this hotel. All the rooms face inwards towards a pool area and lounge, creating a communal hangout space.
This hotel is also a fun place to stay, because there is an onsite bar and a pool table. As Uvita is quite a vast town, it’s great to have onsite facilities so you don’t have to go too far to find food, drinks and entertainment!
Best for: Sociable couples and fans of playing pool
Lil Lost Hostel
Lil Lost Hostel is a new hostel to the area, but one of the cheapest at around $25 for a two person room! Although the facilities are basic, the hostel is only around 800m from Hermosa Beach, making this a great place to stay for beach lovers.
Best for: Bargain hunters
Shipwrecked Hostel is one of the top rated hotels in Uvita with a whopping 9.8 on Booking.com. It’s an unusual option as it’s a hostel, but with pod style rooms. Here you can book either a double or single bed, these are set in pods within a large dorm room. We’ve stayed in similar places before and liked the privacy, but the chance to socialise if we wanted to.
This hostel is very close to the bus station, which is the area in the centre of town close to restaurants and bars. It’s a good option if you plan to visit the park and the waterfall as well as the beaches, and you don’t mind a long walk or a taxi ride. The location is perfect if you have a heavy bag and you’re taking the bus to Uvita too!
Guests love the comfortable beds, location and modern facilities.
Best for: Singles ready to mingle
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