Gay Union Debate Heats Up Gaycation Spot

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Manuel Antonio National Park Entrance

( — February 13, 2015) Alajuela, Alajuela — Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica is making headlines as the #2 must-go gaycation spot for 2015, according to Vital Voice, the popular online LGBT lifestyle magazine.  Sydney, Australia is ranked #1 with Miami Beach, Florida and Maui, Hawaii, ranking #3 and #4, respectfully.  This follows the recent Costa Rican governmental discussions where gay marriage is once again under debate.

Despite the Catholic Church maintaining its hold on most of the population; Costa Rica’s recent legal changes have made the country, as a whole, more welcoming to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, although the ‘accidental’ passing of a law in 2013 to allow gay marriage was later overturned that same year.  Nonetheless, couples that want to have a blessing ceremony for family and friends can find breath-taking ocean views and a jungle setting are the perfect backdrop for vows that can be legalized back home.  Visitors to the Central American country will find that tolerance and acceptance are very much a part of this peace-loving nation that abolished its army more than sixty years ago to focus on improving its citizens’ healthcare and education.

Just two hours outside of the capital city, San Jose, the Pacific beach, surf town of Manuel Antonio is the most prominent destination in the country for gay-friendly beaches, hotels and bars.  It has been this way for the last thirty years.

Manuel Antonio is also popular due to its proximity to the Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) and of course, the natural beauty of the area, whose pinnacle is the national park that shares its name.  Costa Rica has numerous protected areas; however, Manuel Antonio National Park has long been a treasured gem because of its accessibility and quality of rainforest, wildlife, and white sand beaches.

Finding the way to the park is easy – start in the town of Quepos, head south, and once a cargo plane is passed on the right hand side of the road…slow down.  The entrance is just over 2km away.

This landmark, the El Avion, also serves as an unusual restaurant and bar.  With spectacular sunset views across the rainforest-shrouded coastline, this is a dream location for any sundowner and the cocktail menu is also sure to please.  The owner of the establishment, the Costa Verde Hotel, has expanded over twenty-five years to offer a range of accommodations, like adult-only areas, and services, such as destination weddings, to appeal to all visitors to the beach resort.

Ballena National Park, named for the distinctive whale-tail shaped sand bank that projects from the beach and the fact that whales can be seen seasonally from the shores, is just over an hour’s drive from Manuel Antonio and well worth the trip.  Along the coastal road, Route 34, visitors also enjoy pausing at the surf beaches of Dominical and Uvita, which are just under an hour’s drive.  Venturing out and exploring the surrounding regions is easy to do; there’s a Vamos Rent-A-Car office right next to the El Avion.

Costa Rica is ever-popular as a destination for weddings, honeymoons and romantic getaways and the country loves February 14th, which is charmingly known as Friendship Day.  Beach strolls, waterfall dips and candle-lit dinners just say, “I love you” and may all be found here.

Vamos Rent-A-Car

Oficentro Plaza Aeropuerto, Oficina C-4, 150 meters West of Tical
Alajuela, Alajuela Costa Rica 20109