There is no better way to explore Costa Rica than on your own if you rent a car, or join one of the amazing tours in our area. Ask at the Reception so we can direct you to fit your fancy. Use Dominical as your base to explore into Corcovado (several day trips offered), into the mangroves by kayak, up to the launch point to paragliding down to Dominical beach in front of our Hotel, take off snorkeling, scuba diving, head off to a waterfall for a day hike or just a quick 5 minute walk. You can join whale tours, ATV tours, birdwatching groups, yoga or dance classes, or cooking classes. Want to learn to surf? Domi has great teachers with classes everyday that will make it easy for you to learn.
Dominical is the perfect place to use as your base camp, then adventure out for the day as there are so many great things to do & see in the area in close proximity. Get away from the tourist trap of busy Manuel Antonio, stay in Dominical and enjoy a laid back relaxed atmosphere with fewer people and cars.
The Nacuya Waterfalls:
The waterfall office is 8km away (15 min drive from our Hotel. Just across the Dominical bridge there’s a turn towards San Isidro del General, this is the same road to get to the office and the starting point for the Nayyaca Waterfall.
Cataratas de Nacuya can be reached by foot ($8) or driven jeep ($10 one way) or join a tour on horseback ($70 with lunch). “Cataratas” meaning waterfall in Spanish. Buy your ticket then either park downhill at the start of the trail (recommended) or sign up for a jeep here. Jeep hours are 9-12noon, on the hour. They will pick you back up at the waterfall 2 hours later.
Walking to the falls takes about 1.20min walk for an average walker. No flip-flops, so wear good hiking shoes or water shoes with good treads, bring water/snacks, a hat, and insect repellent. There is nothing at the falls besides a bathroom, so bring water and snacks with you. There is a restaurant at the middle of the trail.
The waterfalls are beautiful. You can easily spend a few hours hanging out. Make sure you ring your swimsuit and a change of clothes for the walk back. They close the gate to enter by 3:30pm.
A 5 minute drive south of Dominical, you find the waterfall of Pozo Azul, meaning ‘the blue hole’. It is reached after turning into the small town of Dominicalito. Follow the road into the small community, cross the bridge then to your right go up and in 20meters(2 mins.) you will see a sign on your right and a big tree on your left. Here is where you park. Do not leave anything in your car. On the opposite side of the road you see an opening between the trees, a small sign and here is the footpath you follow down to the waterfall. A 5-10min. walk down on a jungle footpath (watch where you walk as there are tree roots and stones) you will end up at a lovely pool to swim, a rope swing and places to relax.
Swing off the rope and into the refreshing waters, but use caution and be aware of the shallow waters and rocky edges that surround the swimming hole. Keep a look out for sloths, monkeys and other rain forest wildlife.
25 minutes south of Dominical and a short ride from the Uvita information center you will come upon more waterfalls, just a shirt drive up from the highway. Follow signs for " Cataratas" or Cascada Verde. This is on private land so you will be asked to pay a nominal fee (1,500/$2 each) Wear a good pair of water shoes for the hike and walking in the streams. The stairs down are in good shape. There are a couple of different waterfalls, a very tall one and a smaller falls. one for the more adventurous and one for everyone else even kids can easily jump in and swim about. Some local people even cliff dive and there is also a natural water slide.
There is a restaurant at the entrance/parking area with nice smoothies. The trail to get to the falls is obvious and takes about 5 minutes.
*dont forget to bring fresh fruit, snacks & bottled water. Please remember, A good adventurer always packs Out what they bring in!
35 minutes drive north on the highway towards San Isidro from the beach town of Dominical you find the turn off for the Diamante Waterfall. It is outside of the village of Las Tumbas near Tinamaste. The landscape here has both lush, rolling mountains and open valleys that are sometimes enshrouded in clouds.
You’ll wind up and down the mountain, passing several small towns like Baru and Platanillo. After a large church on the right, take your first right onto a dirt road (there should be a sign for Valle de Vida). This will lead you into Las Tumbas area. Follow this road for about 15 minutes, passing a bridge and a small church.
The scenery is amazing but be careful on the trek up the mountain, following the steep, rocky path. After 2 hours arrive at two twin, 85-foot (26 meter) waterfalls with a few gigantic boulders which formed the base of a cave which you can go into. You can continue hiking up to the tallest waterfall which is about 600 feet (183 meters) up.
There are also tour that will take you up there and arrange for you to sleep in the cave behind the falls area. Best to do in dry season. On your walk back they will offer to rappel or hike back.
El Pavon Waterfalls:
35 minutes on the highway south from Dominical you find the turn off for the El Pavon Waterfall. It will be after Ojochal's several turnoffs. You will see a sign that says Tilapia Lodge, you turn to your left here then follow the road for about 30mins.
Pass the Tilapia Restaurant and 2km afterwards, on the left side of the road, there is a small sign that says "EL Pavon". Park along the road and the walk down is about 5 mins. Its a very local watering hole so you many see local families. There is a swimming hole, several levels of smaller pools and a big rock wedged between the two sides of the mountain and you can swim behind the waterfall. Its quite a beautiful site! (avoid weekends for crowds)