The 5 best beaches for surfing in Costa Rica the Costa Rica news


Costa Rica is one of the most attractive surfing destinations on the planet. The Central American country is calm and safe, with spectacular nature and extraordinary waves on its 2 coasts, the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. The Ticos, as the natives of Costa Rica are affectionately called, are hospitable and greet visitors from all over the world with a smile.

To help you plan your trip, here are the 5 best surf spots in the land of ‘Pura Vida’:

Tamarindo and Avellanas, Guanacaste

Tamarindo Beach

Although Tamarindo and Avellanas are 2 different beaches, we bring them together in one destination due to their proximity and because they belong to the same state of the country, Guanacaste, to the north. Tamarindo is one of the busiest beaches in northern Costa Rica, possibly the most famous spot on the Pacific coast.

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Its easy access, one hour distance from the airport and its beauty, make Tamarindo a popular destination in Guanacaste for locals and international tourists. Tamarindo offers excellent waves all year round and the beach is quite long with several spots.

It is not a demanding or dangerous place for the inexperienced. Those who want to learn have several surf camps like this. Tamarindo is full of life, day and night; it is a perfect spot to start in the Central American country and in the surf.

Playa Avellanas

Avellanas Beach

At Avellanas Beach, the waves can be big and powerful. It is a spot for more experienced surfers than Tamarindo. The beauty of its waters and excellent world-class waves, white sands and turquoise waters make it one of the top surf spots in Costa Rica.

The beach is divided into several spots, such as La Purruja or the legendary El Estero de Avellanas, which is considered one of the best in Costa Rica globally. For less experienced surfers, El Parqueo is a less demanding spot nearby with long, gentle waves.

Due to its strong waves, it is much quieter than other popular beaches in Guanacaste, perfect for relaxing in the sun, walking or horse riding, or just relaxing on the sand reading a book, though, as in most countries, the nightlife is also quite lively …

Playa Guiones, Nosara

Guiones, with its 7 kilometers of beautiful beach, is a perfect place for surfers of all levels, especially for intermediate surfers and beginners. Very regular, it has surfable waves almost 300 days a year. And like the other beaches mentioned, it offers all the services you could need: surf camps, surf shops, surf lessons and board rental.

Near Playa Guiones there is the Ostional Wildlife Refuge, where sea turtles spawn, from July to November, which can be a complementary experience to surfing. Recently, the beach received the ecological Blue Flag, for the cleanliness of its waters and its sand, thanks to the commitment of locals and tourists.

Salsa Brava, Puerto Viejo

The Caribbean of Costa Rica is also a paradise for travelers seeking surf and nature in Costa Rica. At Salsa Brava there is a shallow, but quite sharp, reef which probably gives the best waves in Costa Rica. It is not a place for beginners, the currents are strong and the waves very fast.

The surf season on this beach runs from November to January and April to August. Near Puerto Viejo de Limón, on the beach, there are bicycle and surfboard rentals, as well as a rich nightlife.

It is very easy to reach by car, since the whole route is paved. From here you can surf other popular beaches such as Punta Uva, Playa Cocles and Playa Grande. For more details on this great spot, this article and video on Salsa Brava.

Roca Bruja, Playa Naranjo

A beautiful wild beach covered with golden sand in the Santa Rosa National Park. It has fast and powerful waves, cylindrical tubes and one of the most photogenic ranges in the world.

Being in a National Park, there are no hotels in the region, but it is possible to camp at the entrance of the Park in an area designated for this purpose. The nesting leatherback turtles at night and the nocturnal luminescence of the beach waters draw visitors beyond the surf itself.

The best time to go to Roca Bruja is from December to March, when the northeast winds give very good waves.


Pavones is an already legendary wave, which belongs to the dream of many world surfers and to the memory of the lucky ones who surfed it. On a peninsula south of Costa Rica, on the coast of the Pacific Ocean, this long and lofty left surrounded by jungle is considered one of the best in the Americas.

A 6 to 8 hour journey from San José, the capital of the country, it will take us to reach Pavones, although currently there is also an air connection. Golfito is a small town, the largest of those surrounding the point, a left which in its heyday exceeds a kilometer long, noble, manageable and with sections of tubes that can be surfed from 1.5 meters to 4 meters, with sessions suitable for intermediate or advanced surfing.

The tip needs a strong swell to break, with the best conditions at mid-rising or falling tide, and life there is simple and basic, if there are no waves get ready to walk, drink beer and wait for the waves next to a bonfire on the beach.

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