Malpais and Santa Teresa are not only one of the most beautiful places in Costa Rica, but one of the most beautiful in the whole world. Imagine perfect beaches with coconut palms, almond trees, and ancient pochotes, backed by dramatic jungle-covered hills. The water is warm all year, and the jungles are filled with an amazing variety of animals: monkeys, parrots and other birds, iguanas, and even the occasional anteater.
In the 1960’s a few foreigners discovered Montezuma, and moved there, before there were cars or electricity. Travel was done on horseback. Life was harder, but worth it. Over the decades, Montezuma was “discovered” and hundreds of people moved there from all over the world, especially Italy, Argentina, Germany, Canada, and the United States. It became known as a secret hideaway for movie stars, musicians, artists and creative people of all types. Before travel to Costa Rica was common, Montezuma had already become a world famous destinations for tourists “in the know” about the best places on earth. In the last ten years, Malpais, a very short drive from Montezuma, became the next great destination, and has since outgrown its sidekick status to Montezuma, becoming a major destination of its own, now with far more hotels and restaurants than Montezuma. The driving force behind Malpais’ rapid growth has been its amazing variety and consistency of surf, and people from around the world have learned the reputation of Malpais surfing, and have come to enjoy the waves.
Costa Rica is also famous for its animal life, and even though Malpais is a “dry tropical forest” and many of its trees lose their leaves in the dry seasoon, it teems with life. There are two types of monkeys, several species of parrots, one type of toucan, and many ground mammals such as coatis, raccoons, anteaters, and agoutis. There’s even a resident jaguar, but very seldom seen. Several other types of wild cats live in the area as well, but are incredibly rare. The ocean here is filled with fish, and a two hour trip out to sea usually results in a catch that will feed you for weeks.
The reputation of Malpais has grown as more people discovered the area and told their friends about it. Now it’s become one of the best destinations for tourists in Costa Rica. It’s no wonder, considering there is an incredible variety of activities available, such as: surfing, snorkeling, scuba diving, fishing, boating, hiking, waterfalls, bicycling, motorcycle riding, yoga, dancing massage, and much more. Malpais even has its own canopy tour. Tourists could spend a month in this area and do a different exciting activity every day, although most choose a more “tranquilo” lifestyle.
Surfing isn’t the only game in town in Malpais. Costa Rica has become known for its yoga centers, and our area is known as one of the main centers of yoga here, with options such as Pranamar, Anamaya, Horizons, Tropico Latino, Indigo, Ylang Ylang, and many more.
Less than half an hour away lies Montezuma, the jewel of Costa Rica, with several incredible restaurants such as the beachfront Playa de Los Artistas.
It’s no wonder that the Montezuma/Malpais area have rapidly escalating real estate prices since many people have decided to try living in Costa Rica. With 40 million Americans set to retire in the next decade, and almost 9 million of them with liquid assets of over $1 million, smart investors see that this area will probably become one of the most expensive beach real estate markets in the world. Many people who have been coming to the area for years now wish they had bought something earlier and are buying now before it becomes affordable only to the wealthy.
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