My most recent trip to the country of Costa Rica took me further south to the town of Uvita- home of the famous Whale Tail! Located in Marion Ballena National Park, Uvita is know for their excellent whale watching. In this article we will explore some of the local culinary hideaways and my top pick…more on that later.
As with other trips to Costa Rica, my experience was once again refreshing. The residents are friendly and enjoy showing off their English skills for those visiting. Take time before you go to brush up on your Spanish. Many of the conversations exceeded my skillset, however, my efforts were still appreciated. Ticos love to hear their language spoken by visitors and they enjoy conversing.
Plan to dress beach casual – nothing fancy needed for this trip. Sundresses, shorts, t-shirts or tank tops and flip flops are all that is needed to visit any restaurant. No air conditioning can be found in restaurants, so less is best! One of the most recent purchases that I have made turned out to be invaluable! If you want to bring multiple outfits and ensure minimal wrinkling, I definitely would recommend picking up some of these compression packing cubes!
While the tap water is considered safe to drink, I still opted for sparkling water or bottled tap water while eating out. I am, admittedly, a self-proclaimed water snob.
Great Eats in Costa Rica
Where to Eat near Downtown Uvita
Let’s get to the yummy part. Where to eat and why. The town of Uvita, (or the “business district”, as the local Ticos refer to it), offers modern conveniences including shopping, lodging, grocery and dining options. The US dollar is widely accepted.
Along Highway 34 you will find Beehive Mediterranean Restaurant, Bar and Boutique. While it does not offer a view, it is a local favorite- the food, excellent, the bar, well stocked. The large open-air restaurant offered a diverse menu.
What to Order!
I chose the Sea Bass, (“Fish of the Day”), served with lemon potatoes and vegetables. The portions were very large. Daily cocktails were highlighted on their chalkboard. I opted for the spicy margarita!
Don’t be surprised when you see children walking through the restaurant with their bathing suits on. A large swimming pool located beside the restaurant offers swimming lessons. As a matter of fact, I wore my bathing suit to dinner as well! Just throw on a cute cover up like this one and you’re ready to go!
Where to Eat in Domical
To experience the closest local beach vibe, visit Domical, which is just a few kilometers north of Uvita. This local favorite hosts souvenir shops, restaurants, markets and permanent beach vendors.
Be sure to visit Fuego Brewing Company. This open-air tree top setting has a glass floor observation area over their beer brewing operation, and they boast keg light fixtures. The food was fresh, and the service was excellent. I chose the fish tacos and once again, the portions were very large and beer was cold! Try out their local brews. Cheers to the brew master!
A “Must Visit”!
My top dining pick of the trip was La Parcela. This cliff side restaurant provided views from both sides. Be sure to make a reservation for later in the afternoon- 4:30 was perfect!- so that you can catch the sunset. A trail on the northwest side provides an easy walk to an overlook that frames the sunset beautifully. Pack a daypack and use it to carry your group’s necessities for each daily adventure – this one worked perfectly for my carry on and doubled as a perfect daypack. It has multiple secure pockets, (22!), including a pocket for a large water bottle pocket on the side, and- this is the best part!- it’s own charging port. Charge your portable power bank, (I use this one), each night and then pop it into your daypack each morning. Your electronics will never die!
What to Order!
The Panamanian White-faced Capuchin monkeys enjoy running across the roof and entertaining guests by hanging freely over the roof’s edge and peering in on diners. Remember: do not feed the monkeys!
So, what did I order, you ask? Local spiney lobster! You will not find this dish on the menu. Pro tip: ask your server for extra butter. Don’t be fooled, however, this is not the sweet lobster of northeast coast of the United States. I knew that going in, so my expectations were set for something less delicate and flavorful. The lobster was packed full of traditional white meat and was chewier and larger than the US version.
Why was this my top pick? Quite simply, the ambience. You cannot beat the views from both sides, the entertainment of the monkeys was super fun, and that killer view of the sunset rivaled sights from previous trips to other destinations.
This trip provided new culinary finds and fantastic scenery! You won’t be disappointed if you book a trip.
‘Til we meet again, Costa Rica,