We went to San Buenaventura of Puntarenas, and spent the night hiking with the best view of the Gulf of Nicoya to reach a beautiful hill that they call El Encanto (aka The Charm)!
How to get there?
You have to go as far as Guanacaste on route 27 or on route 1 and turn right towards Miramar where Gas station Uno is at 4 junctions. From here it is almost half an hour upwards following the direction of waze.
Distance:5 to 10km
* The route changed after we did this trip so now it’s 11km in total.
Difficulty:High. * Advanced level of 5 to 6 hours of walking.
What to bring?
Comfortable clothes for quick drying and sun protection, trail tennis shoes, a waterproof jacket, sunblock, hat, insect repellent, sunglasses.
Cost:¢ 10000 (includes breakfast, lunch, and guide)
We left at 6 am heading on route 27, then we got on route 1 and at Miramar we diverted for a little over half an hour until we reached Jairo and Mariana’s house where the ride to Cerro El Encanto begin, not without first having a pinto with eggs to get us pumped for the hike.
To get to this hill you start from an unpaved street and after 300 meters you have to go inside a pasture to a path with high grass (it’s better to wear long pants/leggings) then you pass a couple of barbed wire fences and things start becoming more interesting since the path gets surrounded by beautiful forest.
After 15 minutes through the forest, the trees suddenly began to fade and the view of the mountain hills came alive… we had not even started to walk El Encanto Hill and we were already mesmerized with its majesty.
Then we followed the path with the best view of the area towards the Monteverde mountains on the right, on the left you can see the full Nicoya Gulf and later on we managed to appreciate the river canyon which we did not go to due to lack of time (it is far). Another thing that happens here is that the wind is very strong, and you have to be careful not to fly off with it or lose your balance and fall to the precipice.
This place is very similar to Cerro Pelado, with the advantage that the road to get there has a lot of shade and it is downhill (in Cerro Pelado it is the other way around … it starts up).
After taking cool vids and pics, we went down even more until we came to a combo of monstrous stones with a cave where we decided to have our classic picnic while some went to the viewpoint below to see the river from the edge of the cliff … After the sky started to get cloudy we went back another way until we reached the road where the journey began.
When we returned to Jairo and Mariana’s house, we changed to dry clothes and then went to eat the delicious meal prepared for us.