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It is located 9.5 kilometers south of Golfito. Zancudo is located on a long and narrow peninsula, sometime only 100 yards wide, at the mouth of the Rio Colorado. On one side of the peninsula is Zancudo's beach, protected from the full force of Pacific waves, while the other is home to a mangrove swamp. The whole beach is 6 miles long, with the southern three miles of it having jungle and farmland on the east side and most of the town being located within the northernmost mile. The town of Playa Zancudo contains a school, several churches, a soccer field, some Tico restaurants and bars, three sportfishing areas, and a general store.
The area around Golfito's port was developed by the United Fruit Company in the 1930s. While this was happening, excess bananas that washed down the Rio Coto river came upon Playa Zancudo's beaches. During this time, pig farms thrived on the leftover bananas. Gringos began moving to Zancudo in the 1980s, with the rise in foreign settlement aiding the demise of pig farming in Zancudo.
The dirt road which connects the community is in severe disrepair, which prohibits bus service in and out of the town. This has been a major problem to its inhabitants, especially for the youth since they must travel to nearby communities daily for school. An odd consequence of this is that groups of up to 25 students have been forced to collectively rent pickup trucks for a daily charge.
- Parrales, Freddy (2 December 2008). "Vía a playa Zancudo sigue en abandono total" [Road to Zancudo beach is still completely abandoned]. La Nación (in Spanish).
- "About Playa Zancudo". Cabinas Sol Y Mar. Retrieved 2008-06-04.
- Samson, Karl; Jane Aukshunas (1994). Frommer's Comprehensive Travel Guide: Costa Rica. Simon & Schuster, Inc. p. 201.