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Limon

Limon, Costa Rica
Limon, Costa Rica

Limon Overview

Limon is the province of Costa Rica that is filled with Afro-Caribbean flavor and it was also the first place of the country where Cristobal Colon disembarked (arriving in 1502).

Its name has its origin back in 1840, when a tortoiseshell dealer who established here grew a small plantation of Lemon (Limon) trees in front of his property and became a reference point in the region.

During the colonial period, Limon was mostly populated by Huetar and Suerre Indians, but development started when North American companies arrived here searching for a place where to establish their banana plantations.

The population of Limon is heavily constituted by black people, and the reason for this is because a lot of Jamaican immigrants were brought here to work in the banana plantations.

At first, it was believed that these immigrants were not going to stay for long, but then, in 1949, they were granted national ID’s and free access to the rest of the Costa Rican territory.

Getting to Limon

Buses for Limon are leaving every 30 minutes from the Terminal Del Caribe bus station in downtown San Jose, and you can expect a trip of around 4 hours, though the buses are modern, so the ride will be comfortable.

If you decide to drive, you need to head to Tibas, and take Highway 32, which goes through the Braulio Carrillo National Park.

There are almost no deviations in the road to Limon, so if you follow the signs, you should make it there without a problem.

If you wish to make it to this Caribbean province faster, you can also opt for taking a domestic flight from the Tobias Bolaños Airport, located in Pavas, San Jose. This trip can take about 35 minutes.

What to Do in Limon

Limon is not considered an attraction in itself, but a point of departure for visiting other tourist destinations.

If you happen to see a lot of foreigners in the streets of downtown Limon; chances are that those visitors are coming in one of the cruise ships which disembark in the local dock for a full day on their way to other destinations at the Caribbean sea.

The most attractive event here is the Limon Carnivals (which is their local version of the Rio Carnivals); where you’ll enjoy a really nice parade and a few international concerts.

It is celebrated in October for a full week, so if you happen to be in the area during that time, make sure you check it out.

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca:

This is probably the most famous beach town in the province, especially amongst surfers who come here in search of riding the waves at Salsa Brava, one of the most dangerous surf breaks in Costa Rica.

This is also where the nightlife is best at Limon, with various Discos and Bars where you’ll always find some reggae music and the warmth of the multicultural residents.

Once in here, you can also check out the smaller adjacent villages of Manzanillo and Punta Uva to the south, where you’ll find beautiful white sand beaches.

Cahuita National Park:

This place is located 22 miles away from downtown Limon and is home to a large variety of animal and plant species.

The main attraction in the park is the coralline reef, where you’ll find 35 species of coral, 44 of crustaceans, 140 of mollusks and 123 of fish, which makes it the perfect spot for doing some snorkeling or some scuba diving.

Important Numbers and Websites:

  • Municipalidad: 2758-8176
  • Buses: 2221-1334
  • Hospital Tony Facio (Limon): 2257-7922
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