Provincia de Puntarenas, Pavones, Costa Rica

The surfing town of Pavones, at the entrance to the Golfo Dulce, is famous for long ocean swells that take surfers on crazy three-minute rides. A little farther into the gulf is Zancudo, known for its black-sand beach, stunning sunsets and a bioluminescent show that plankton put on when the moon is bright. Near the old banana-growing town of Golfito, river deltas feed mangrove swamps teeming with monkeys, crocodiles and birds.

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