This is the only place for camping in Jacó, Costa Rica. So, if you want to camp, look for the Restaurante Jacó Rustico, which is located on a side street, off of the main drag in Jacó. From the main road, look for Restaurante Langostas. This is where you need to turn, heading toward the beach, which is only a block away. The campground is owned and operated by the Restaurant Jaco Rustico which is a “Comida Tipica” place with a good value. They are always full with a line to get in to eat in their outdoor dining area. The restaurant looks good however we did not eat there. The campground is behind the restaurant. If you are driving, you turn left into the restaurant parking lot to the campground entrance gate. When we arrived, the office for the campground was closed but the gate was open. We were told it was okay to enter, set up camp, and pay in the morning.
The entire campground was fenced, however, they never closed or locked the gate all night. Each camping area was spacious with running water, a sink, trash can, and picnic tables. There were tons of ants. The ants were everywhere and the problem was such that you couldn’t have your feet on the ground without ants crawling on you and biting you. Being from Florida, where fire ants are pretty much everywhere, it was not much of a problem. We just sat on the top of the picnic tables with our feet on the bench rather than the ground. The mens bathrooms had showers, and toilets without toilet seats. The toilets did not flush, they were filled with feces and stank really bad.
Timo set up a hammock in order to keep a better eye on our stuff that night. He stayed up while the rest of us slept. Around 2am some guy walked into the campground (they leave the gate open). Timo watched him as he walked by every occupied campsite, scanning the area, more than likely for something to steal. When he saw Timo he walked up and asked for a lighter and started talking to him. The guy tried to talk Timo into walking to the beach with him, which is a half a block away. The first time he asked, he said there was a party, the next time he said there were lots of girls, then free beer, then pot. Timo said the entire time, the guy was rubbing his nose and sniffing as if he were high on drugs. Timo’s assessment is that the guy was trying to lure him away from the campsite in order to rob us or perhaps have his friends rob us or steal our stuff. We do not recommend camping in this campground. They charge 3,500 colones per person ($7 USD) and 1,000 colones($2 USD) for the vehicle, if you are willing to take the risk of camping here. We will not return to this campground. We are very lucky and fortunate that we did not get ripped off that night. You, your gear, and your vehicle are at risk in this place at night. I doubt this was an isolated event. We recommend staying at another place in town such as, Hostel Buddha House, which is close by.