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Puerto Viejo de Sarapiquí & Around
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Introducing Puerto Viejo de Sarapiquí & Around

At the scenic confluence of Ríos Puerto Viejo and Sarapiquí, Puerto Viejo de Sarapiquí was once the most important port in Costa Rica. Boats laden with fruit, coffee and other commercial exports plied the Sarapiquí as far as the Nicaraguan border, then turned east on the Río San Juan to the sea. Today, it is simply a gritty palm-shaded market town. But there's grace here too, evidenced by the cute tiled benches and archways along the shopping district adjacent to the soccer field. There's also educational innovation. The local polytechnic high school offers students advanced tourism, ecology and agriculture degrees. The school even has its own reserve, laced with trails. Visitors, meanwhile, can choose from any number of activities in the surrounding area such as bird-watching, rafting, kayaking, boating and hiking. Migración (immigration office) is near the small wooden dock, sometimes avoided by visiting Nicaraguans who share the river with local fishers and visiting birders.

There is no dry season, but from late January to early May is the ‘less wet’ season. On the upside, when it rains here there are fewer mosquitoes.