Malpais  is a town in Puntarenas Province, Costa Rica which began as a fishing and cattle-farming village, and has become popular among surfers and adventure travelers around the world. Recently, Forbes Magazine voted the beaches of Malpais and neighboring Santa Teresa as "One of the ten most beautiful in the world."

The town got its name from the fact that all the rivers and streams that flow into the beach in the area dry up in the summer season, making it a "bad land" to try to live in.

Malpais now is known for its incredible beauty, with white sand coves, rocky outcroppings, steep jungle-covered hills, and forests teeming with animals, birds, and insects.

The area is still remote and undeveloped. Complete with pot-holed dirt roads that become very muddy in the rainy season (July- October) and dry like powder in the dry season (November-May). The area is very spread out and transportation is a must. Most locals get around on quad bikes and motorcycles. Most of these have surf racks on them and it would be an odd day to travel the area without seeing someone without a surfboard heading to the nearby breaks.

While Malpais is still a remote fishing village, it also is known for modern day luxuries. Many excellent hotels and luxury houses have been built in recent years, and there are many excellent restaurants, with cuisine from around the world.

Costa Rica covers approximately 19,730 square miles and borders both the Caribbean Sea (to the east) and the North Pacific Ocean (to the west), with a total of 1,290 kilometres (802 mi) of coastline. Costa Rica also borders Nicaragua to the north and Panama to the south-southeast. In total, Costa Rica comprises 51,100 square kilometers (19,730 sq. mi) plus 589.000 square kilometers of territorial waters. The highest point in the country is Cerro Chirripó, with 3,810 meters (12,500 ft), and is the fifth highest peak in Central America. The highest volcano in the country is the Irazú Volcano (3,431 m or 11,257 ft). The largest lake in Costa Rica is Lake Arenal. Costa Rica also comprises several islands. Cocos Island stands out because of its distance from continental landmass, but Calero Island is the biggest island of the country. Costa Rica protects over 25% of its national territory within national parks. It also possess the greatest density of species in the world.
Costa Rica is home to a rich variety of plants and animals. While the country has only about 0.1% of the world's land mass, it contains 5% of the world's biodiversity. As Costa Rica has no military or navy, but an abundance of wildlife, it has been said that the soldiers are the leaf cutter ants, the pilots are the macaws and the navy ships are the whales. Over 25% of Costa Rica is composed of protected forests and reserves.One national park that is internationally renowned among ecologists for its biodiversity (including big cats and tapirs) and where visitors can expect to see an abundance of wildlife is the Corcovado National Park.Tortuguero National Park (the name Tortuguero can be translated as turtle catcher or turtle hunter, it is also understood as full of turtles) is home to spider, howler and white-throated Capuchin monkeys, the three-toed sloth, 320 species of birds (including eight species of parrots), a variety of reptiles, but is mostly recognized for the annual nesting of the endangered green turtle and is considered the most important nesting site for this species. Giant leatherback, hawksbill, and loggerhead turtles also nest here.The Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve hosts 2,000 plant species including numerous orchids. Over 400 types of birds can be found here, as well as over 100 species of mammals. Costa Rica as a whole has about 600 species of birds.
The locals refer to themselves as tico or tica(female). The tico ideal is that of a very friendly, helpful, laid back, unhurried, educated and environmentally aware people, with little worry for deadlines or the “normal” stresses of United States life. Visitors from the United States are often referred to as gringos, which is virtually always congenial in nature. The phrase “Pura Vida” (literally “pure life”) is a motto ubiquitous in Costa Rica. It encapsulates the pervading ideology of living in peace in a calm, unflustered manner, appreciating a life surrounded by nature and family and friends.
Historically, Costa Rica’s economy has been based on agriculture, including the production of coffee, bananas, pineapples, and ornamentals, but in recent times ecotourism, electronics, pharmaceuticals, financial outsourcing and software develop -ment have become the prime industries. Costa Rica’s location in the Central American isthmus provides easy access to American markets as it has the same time zone as the central part of the United States and direct ocean access to Europe and Asia. The unit of currency is the colón (CRC), which trades around 500 to the U.S. dollar; currently about 600 to the euro. For 2007 a new currency exchange system will allow the value of the CRC colón to float between two bands as done previously by Chile. The idea is that by doing so the Central Bank will be able to better tackle inflation and discourage the use of the U.S. greenback.

Entry/Exit Requirements (US State Dept.)
For entry into Costa Rica, U.S. citizens must present valid passports that will not expire for at least thirty days after arrival. Passports should be in good condition; Costa Rican immigration will deny entry if the passport is damaged in any way. Costa Rican authorities generally permit U.S. citizens to stay up to ninety days; to stay beyond the period granted, travelers must submit an application for an extension to the Office of Temporary Permits in the Costa Rican Department of Immigration. Tourist visas are usually not extended except under special circumstances, and extension requests are evaluated on a case -by-case basis. There is a departure tax for short-term visitors. Tourists who stay over ninety days may experience a delay at the airport when departing. Persons who overstayed previously may be denied entry to Costa Rica. Costa Rican immigration authorities permit tourists to carry photocopies of the passport datapage and Costa Rican entry stamp on their persons, leaving the original passport in a hotel safe or other secure place. Due to the high incidence of theft of passports, travelers who carry their passports are urged to place them securely in an inside pocket, and to keep a copy of the passport data page in a separate place.

  For more information, call us today
mymalpais.com ©2015