CRC Daily: A hike back in time

The Jacó, Puntarenas hike that transports you into the past.

I’m too young to remember the “old” Jacó, when it was a collection of houses that bordered a crystal-clear sea. Back then, no bridge crossed the Tarcoles River, so cars were ferried across one at a time — waiting hours for their turn, depending on the traffic and the tides.

Needless to say, things have changed. Today, Jacó is a bustling city, complete with large hotels, a crowded downtown and a bustling (if somewhat seedy) nightlife. It’s one of the closest beaches from San José, and bridges now accommodate cars without delay as they cross over the water (and the crocodiles).

But you can still experience some of the jaw-dropping beauty that must have welcomed the visitors of the 1970s. It just takes a little effort.

The hill on the south side of Jacó is known as Miro Mountain, after a Yugoslavian named Miroslav who hoped to build a restaurant or hotel there. “Miro” died in 2010, and the building was never completed, but the ruins have become a popular spot for visitors.

Starting near the Delta gas station, hike a half-mile up the dirt path — no motor vehicles allowed — and you’ll reach the unfinished building. The architecture (and copious spray paint) is itself a sight to behold, but the real highlight is the panoramic view over Jacó and the Pacific Ocean.

From Miro’s Mountain, it’s easy to imagine Jacó as it might have been in 1970: with fewer people, fewer buildings and fewer man-made noises.

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Costa Rica news for November 26

  • The equine serum that Costa Rica hoped would reduce COVID-19 hospitalization time has proved less effective than hoped.

  • Happy Thanksgiving! While it’s a decidedly U.S.-centric holiday, many Costa Ricans will also celebrate a day of gratitude today. Monday is a real Costa Rican holiday, in honor of the abolition of the country’s army.

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