Home > Surfing Packages
Search Hotels

Surfing Packages, Costa Rica

Costa Rica Surfing Seasons

Surfing recommendations

Surfing Locations

Surfing Schools in Costa Rica

All Girls Surf Camp

Warm Water Surfing Paradise

Costa Rica Car Rental Special!

Sixt Rent a car - best discount car rentals for Surfing in Costa Rica

Also take advantage of GREAT RATES and SPECIALS at SIXT COSTA RICA CAR RENTAL - offering $210.00 per week for small 4x4 (insurance not included) and also 7X5 DAYS: PAY 5 AND GET 2 FREE DAYS!

Surfing Packages Costa Rica

Surfing!

Costa Rica is a surfer’s paradise! The point breaks, beach breaks and perfect lefts and rights found here, all make this tiny Central American country a leading surfer hotspot in the world today. And with beaches that are usually very clean, pristine and rarely crowded, Costa Rica has indeed become a favorite surfer hangout.

Costa Rica offers surfers warm water, consistent year round surf, easy access to breaks, over 700 miles of coastline, both Pacific and Caribbean oceans, friendly people, international surfing tournaments and not to mention the wildlife, the active volcanoes, white water rafting, canopy tours, snorkeling, eco-minded culture, the list goes on and on for why Costa Rica is a great place to surf!

Most Requested Surfing Packages, Costa Rica :

Click for more information about - THE LAST FRONTIER SURFING TRIP

THE LAST FRONTIER SURFING TRIP $1260 p/p

(8 Days / 7 Nights) If you are looking for a remote excursion then this is the package for you! On this journey you'll be visiting both Matapalo, situated around the Osa Peninsula on the South ...

Click for more information about - THE SURFER

THE SURFER'S ADVENTURE $1340 p/p

(12 Days / 11 Nights) On this surf trip you will get the taste of 3 of Costa Rica's best surf destinations! Stay in surfer friendly, comfortable hotels with surf out the front or back ...

Click for more information about - PACIFIC SURFER

PACIFIC SURFER'S DREAM $1150 p/p

(10 Days / 9 Nights) Surf at Playa Hermosa and Santa Teresa! Hermosa considered a surf Mecca of the Central Pacific coast offers the most consistent year-round surf with over 3 ½ miles of ...

Click for more information about - THE CARRIBEAN SURFARI

THE CARRIBEAN SURFARI $660 p/p

(8 Days / 7 Nights) This surfing trip is not to be missed, especially if relaxing and surfing in Zen style is your mode! The Caribbean coast is quite different than the Pacific as you ...

Recommended Surfing Hotels in Costa Rica

Central Pacific Surfing Hotels, Costa Rica

A Central Pacific Surfing Hotel in   Santa Teresa

Flor Blanca Resort From : $0 p/p

Hotel Florblanca is located on the hidden pristine beach of Santa Teresa on the Nicoya Peninsula and nestled among beach palms, and fragrant plumeria trees ( tropical trees with delicate white ...

Click for Details about surfing Hotel : Flor Blanca Resort  in the Central Pacific Coast of  Costa Rica  Hotel Details
Click to make a reservation at the surf hotel : Flor Blanca Resort  Inquire Now
A Central Pacfic Surf Hotel in   Mal Pais

Vista de Olas Bungalows From : $0 p/p

Perched on top of a quiet peaceful hillside sits one of the most exclusive hotels on the Nicoya Penninsula; Vista de Olas Hotel and Spa. Vista de Olas offers a feast ...

Click for Details about surfing Hotel : Vista de Olas Bungalows in the Central Pacific Coast of  Costa Rica  Hotel Details
Click to make a reservation at the surf hotel : Vista de Olas Bungalows  Inquire Now
A Pacific Surfing Hotel in

From : $0 p/p

...

Click for Details about surfing Hotel :  in the Central Pacific Coast of  Costa Rica  Hotel Details
Click to make a reservation at the surf hotel :  Inquire Now
A Pacific Surf Hotel in   Santa Teresa

Tropico Latino From : $0 p/p

Trópico Latino Lodge is a small cozy hotel located right on the white sandy beach, at Santa Teresa de Mal Pais, Costa Rica. We are 5 km north of Cabo Blanco ...

Click for Details about surfing Hotel : Tropico Latino in the Central Pacific Coast of  Costa Rica  Hotel Details
Click to make a reservation at the surf hotel : Tropico Latino  Inquire Now
A Costa Rica Surf Hotel in   Santa Teresa

Esencia Hotel & Villas From : $0 p/p

Esencia Hotel and Villas is located in Santa Teresa-Mal Pais Beach on the Nicoya Peninsula. This is one of the most virgin and beautiful regions of Costa Rica. Endless miles of ...

Click for Details about surfing Hotel : Esencia Hotel & Villas in the Central Pacific Coast of  Costa Rica  Hotel Details
Click to make a reservation at the surf hotel : Esencia Hotel & Villas  Inquire Now
A Costa Rica Surfing Hotel in

From : $0 p/p

...

Click for Details about surfing Hotel :  in the Central Pacific Coast of  Costa Rica  Hotel Details
Click to make a reservation at the surf hotel :  Inquire Now

North Pacific Surfing Hotels, Costa Rica

A North Pacific Surfing Hotel in  Playa Grande

Hotel Bula Bula From : $0 p/p

Hotel Bula Bula is located in Playa Grande, on the Pacific Northwest of Costa Rica. The 5 kilometer white sand beach boasts one of the most consistent surf breaks in Costa ...

Click for Details about Surfing Hotel : Hotel Bula Bula i  Hotel Details
Click for a Reservation for Surf Hotel : Hotel Bula Bula in Costa Rica  Inquire Now
A Northern Pacfic Surf Hotel in  Tamarindo

Tamarindo Diria Beach Resort From : $0 p/p

Tamarindo Diria Beach Resort is located in Tamarindo, Guanacaste, one of the most popular beach destinations in Costa Rica. The hotel is set right in front of Tamarindo beach, a 2 ...

Click for Details about Surfing Hotel : Tamarindo Diria Beach Resort i  Hotel Details
Click for a Reservation for Surf Hotel : Tamarindo Diria Beach Resort in Costa Rica  Inquire Now
A Pacific Surfing Hotel in  Tamarindo

Hotel Capitán Suizo From : $0 p/p

Imagine yourself in a charming hotel among vivid gardens and tame jungle, with the Pacific Ocean spilling onto the beach in front of you. As you lounge by the swimming pool, ...

Click for Details about Surfing Hotel : Hotel Capitán Suizo  i  Hotel Details
Click for a Reservation for Surf Hotel : Hotel Capitán Suizo  in Costa Rica  Inquire Now
A Pacific Surf Hotel in  Tamarindo

Hotel Pueblo Dorado From : $0 p/p

Situated in one of the most picturesque areas of Costa Rica, Playa Tamarindo, the newly renovated Pueblo Dorado Hotel features 28 air-conditioned rooms thoughtfully planned with all of the comforts you'll ...

Click for Details about Surfing Hotel : Hotel Pueblo Dorado i  Hotel Details
Click for a Reservation for Surf Hotel : Hotel Pueblo Dorado in Costa Rica  Inquire Now
A Costa Rica Surf Hotel in  Junquillal

Hotel Iguanazul From : $0 p/p

This beach hotel is located one and a half hours away from the International Liberia Airport in Guanacaste, Costa Rica. The Iguanazul is located in the northern province of Guanacaste, on the ...

Click for Details about Surfing Hotel : Hotel Iguanazul i  Hotel Details
Click for a Reservation for Surf Hotel : Hotel Iguanazul in Costa Rica  Inquire Now
A Costa Rica Surfing Hotel in  Nosara

The Harmony Hotel From : $0 p/p

The Harmony located near the beautiful Nosara beach inspires the natural rhythm and sacred connection to the earth that can be found so profound here. A particular deep relaxation is brought ...

Click for Details about Surfing Hotel : The Harmony Hotel i  Hotel Details
Click for a Reservation for Surf Hotel : The Harmony Hotel in Costa Rica  Inquire Now

Carribean Surfing Hotels, Costa Rica

A Carribean Surfing Hotel in   Puerto Viejo

Azania Bungalows From : $0 p/p

Azania is situated in the lavish Southern Caribbean coast of Costa Rica, an area of virgin natural riches, unique culture and traditions BETWEEN the laid-back Caribbean villages of Puerto Viejo and ...

Click for Details about surfing Hotel : Azania Bungalows  in the Carribean Region of  Costa Rica  Hotel Details
Click for Details about Hotel : eng in Carribean Region of Costa Rica  Inquire Now
A Carribean Surf Hotel in   Puerto Viejo

Cariblue Caribbean Resort From : $0 p/p

Hotel Cariblue is a small distinctive bed & breakfast resort located in Puerto Viejo, Talamanca in the province of Limon. Puerto Viejo is a rustic and charming town whose people are ...

Click for Details about surfing Hotel : Cariblue Caribbean Resort in the Carribean Region of  Costa Rica  Hotel Details
Click for Details about Hotel : eng in Carribean Region of Costa Rica  Inquire Now
A Surfing Hotel in   Puerto Viejo

Shawandha Lodge From : $0 p/p

Shawandha Lodge is located on the southern Caribbean coast, a unique exotic region famous for its diverse flora and fauna, its vibrant slow rhythm and its relaxed and friendly people. The ...

Click for Details about surfing Hotel : Shawandha Lodge  in the Carribean Region of  Costa Rica  Hotel Details
Click for Details about Hotel : eng in Carribean Region of Costa Rica  Inquire Now
A Surf Hotel in   Puerto Viejo

La Costa de Papito From : $0 p/p

La Costa de Papito is a Carribbean style lodge located in Puerto Viejo in front of the gorgeous white sand Cocles beach, winner of Costa Rica's blue flag for pristine beaches. ...

Click for Details about surfing Hotel : La Costa de Papito  in the Carribean Region of  Costa Rica  Hotel Details
Click for Details about Hotel : eng in Carribean Region of Costa Rica  Inquire Now
A Costa Rica Surf Hotel in   Puerto Viejo

Totem Hotel From : $0 p/p

In a famous surf spot named Beach Break, is located Totem Hotel Resort & Restaurant. This hotel is a perfect place to relax ...

Click for Details about surfing Hotel : Totem Hotel  in the Carribean Region of  Costa Rica  Hotel Details
Click for Details about Hotel : eng in Carribean Region of Costa Rica  Inquire Now

Costa Rica Car Rental Special!

Sixt Rent a car - best discount car rentals in Costa Rica

Also take advantage of GREAT RATES and SPECIALS at SIXT COSTA RICA CAR RENTAL – offering $210.00 per week for small 4x4 (insurance not included) and also 7X5 DAYS: PAY 5 AND GET 2 FREE DAYS!

Special valid to Nov 15, 2009
 




Costa Rica doesn’t have all 4 seasons.

During the summer months, mid December to April, temperatures are hot and the chance of rain is very unlikely. However, crowds during these months can get pretty fierce, especially over Christmas, New Year's and Easter Week. This is Costa Rica's high season and therefore, hotel and car rental prices will be higher during this time of year than the rest of the year. The best surfing from December to April can be found anywhere along the northern peninsula (Nicoya) or on the Caribbean.

The rainy season technically starts in May and lasts until the end of November. However, during the months of May, June, July & August, temperatures are still hot and the heavy rains have yet to fall. Common weather at this time is sunny skies with late afternoon or early morning rain showers. The real rains begins in September and last until the end of November. The biggest advantage of traveling during these months is lower prices and much fewer crowds.

Our Recomendations.

The Northern Pacific Coast is generally the most consistent destination from December to April. During this season, strong offshore winds combine with ideal swell directions to put breaks like Witches Rock, Playa Negra and Playa Grande in perfect form. The Central and Southern Pacific Coasts are generally best between May to November as the south swell season creeps in while the Caribbean Coast tends to pick up the best conditions from November to March. These are certainly generalizations which are by no means, guaranteed. The most efficient way to take advantage of surfing in Costa Rica is to pick one or two towns to use as your home base and use your rental car by day to explore the nearby breaks. As most breaks are located within less than an hour drive from your home base (and over half are located within 10 minutes), this will allow you more time in the water and less time on the road.

Tamarindo Surfing

Playas Avellanas & Negra

Nosara Surfing

Mal Pais Surfing

Playa Hermosa Surfing

Manuel Antonio Surfing

Dominical Surfing

Drake Bay Surfing

Matapalo Surfing

Pavones Surfing

Puerto Viejo Surfing

Breaks: Tamarindo

Best time from December to April.

Witches Rock

Access by boat only from El Coco beach. A 2 mile stretch of beach with hollow sand bottom beach breaks creating long lefts and rights. Better on high tide, try to avoid it during dead low tide if possible.

Ollie's Point

Access by boat only from El Coco beach. Right point at the river mouth with fast, hollow waves that roll on the beach endlessly breaking over a rocky bottom. Take off at a series of rocks with slow entry. Like all the spots in the North Pacific, it is better on high tide, avoid it during dead low tide if possible.

Playa Grande

Beach break with perfect left and right peaks, holds waves up to almost double-overhead. A very consistent break, Playa Grande almost always has fun, ride able waves, and catches more swell usually than Tamarindo.

Playa Langosta

Rights and lefts breaking over rocks and sand in front of a rivermouth. Usually a little bigger than the nearby breaks in Tamarindo. Very fun surfing, but not always perfect waves. Best conditions at mid - high tide with offshore flow.

Surfing in Tamarindo Costa Rica

Getting To Tamarindo

Map of Tamarindo Costa Rica Surfing Locations
Click Map to Enlarge
Map of Tamarindo Costa Rica Surfing Locations

Tamarindo is accessed by paved road all the way from San José (4½ hours) or by shuttle plane (no boards over 7 feet) into the local airport. To get to Playa Grande you need a 4x4 vehicle. From San José take the Carretera Interamericana to Liberia. It takes about 4 hours to drive from San Jose to Liberia. Once you get to Liberia, start driving towards Tamarindo. The closest gas station is in Filadelfia, so make sure to gas up on the way down. Once you pass Belen, there will be signs all the way to Playa Grande. It takes about 45 minutes from Liberia to Playa Grande.

Hotels in Tamarindo

Tamarindo is centrally located on the coast to offer easy access to a wide variety of surf breaks for all abilities including beach, river mouth and of course, reef breaks such as Witches Rock and Ollie's Point. Tamarindo is a great place to use as home base to explore many of the area breaks to the north and south.

However, the real attraction of Tamarindo is its central location between the world famous break of Playa Negra (south) and Witches Rock (north). Logistically, Tamarindo provides the easiest place to explore the most surf in the shortest time. Moreover, Tamarindo offers a wide variety of accommodations from beachfront hotels, condominiums to private house rentals. This is the best place on the Northern Pacific coast to go for the perfect mix of a variety of waves, accommodations, restaurants and nightlife.

First time visitors to Costa Rica tend to fall in love with this tropical paradise although, many return visitors will opt for quieter destinations such as Playa Grande or Nosara. It's also very close to Playa Avellanas and Playa Negra.

Playa Grande is a good option for those looking to avoid the crowds often found in Tamarindo and surf world class waves right out their front door.. Grande offers one of the area's most consistent waves and there are several private house rentals located right on the beach. This offers surfers a more remote option than Tamarindo while still offering easy access (15 minute drive) to the amenities of the town.

Breaks: Playa Avellanas - Playa Negra

Best time from December to April. For those looking for a remote vacation experience, these are the ideal destination.

Playa Avellanas

A series of rights and lefts from a rivermouth offering a series of peaks including reefs and beach breaks. The northern end of the rivermouth boasts an outside reef break, "Little Hawaii," which works best on a west or northwest swell and is ideal for long boarders. The rivermouth is a rock bottom right that can get very hollow and best at low tide in the am.

Playa Negra

12 kilometers south of Tamarindo offering epic right-hand reef/point break. Very consistent, perfect and powerful, known as one of the best breaks in Costa Rica. Playa Negra starts to really turn on when it's a couple feet overhead, and can hold almost triple overhead without closing out. Very playful and fun surfing when its around head high. Negra can get crowded easily.

Surfing in Playa Avellanas - Playa Negra Costa Rica

Getting to Playa Avellanas

Map of Playa Avellanas and Playa Negra Costa Rica Surfing Locations
Click Map to Enlarge
Large Map of Avellanas and Playa Negra Costa Rica Surf Spots

Avellanas and Negra are accessed by a dirt road from Huacas (just outside of Tamarindo). Check road conditions before driving (beach and internal road available).

Hotels in Tamarindo

It offer some excellent surfing and for those looking for a remote vacation experience, these are the ideal destination. There are comfortable & affordable accommodations here within walking distance to the surf however the only services offered other than those found in nearby Tamarindo, are those at the hotel. This is an ideal location for surfers looking for a more relaxing, remote surfing vacation with less nightlife and more dawn patrol sessions.

Although most travelers opt to stay in Tamarindo and make the drive to these breaks, if you choose to stay at these locations for your surf vacation, the best way to enjoy these breaks is to stay at the respective hotel in front of the break.

Breaks: Nosara

Junquillal

A beach break and a left reef that work better on higher tides. There are many peaks with hollow, fast rights and lefts. The waves jack up off the sandbar creating a tough entry. On a large enough swell, try surfing at Playa Blanca directly in front of the Iguana Azul which offers double overhead epic lefts.

Playa Marbella

Located between Junquillal and Ostional, this is one of the area's most consistent breaks offering excellent conditions with the presence of offshore winds. No services.

Playa Ostional

Beach and reef break with rights and lefts that works on higher tides and south to southwest swells. Located north of Nosara.

Playa Nosara

Great beach break with peaks and shallow rock reef lefts that get barreling with a large south or southwest swell.

Playa Pelada

A rock reef on the north side which is best with a north swell at incoming high tide. Not very consistent and gets very crowded

Playa Guiones

A beach break with a left point that works better at high tides and early in the morning. This area offers some of the most consistent year-round surf ranging from head-high to double overhead and much less crowded than the Tamarindo area.

Playa Camaronal

Located way down between Nosara and Mal Pais. Nice beach break that is surrounded by rocks. This break is very consistent and offers surf year-round Best conditions from the south, or southwest.

Olga's

Short right hand reef break directly in front of Olga's Bar/Restaurant in Pelada. Usually best at mid to high tide, with a decent size swell. Good when it's closing out elsewhere.

Surfing in Nosara Costa Rica

Getting To Playa Nosara

Click Map to Enlarge
Big Map of Nosara Costa Rica Surf Spots

Nosara is accessed by taking the ferry from Tempisque Ferry across the Nicoya Peninsula and then drive for 2 hours until reaching Nosara. There is also a small airport.

Hotels in Playa Nosara

Nosara has become increasingly popular amongst traveling surfers as it offers a more laid back, relaxed atmosphere than its bustling neighbor to the north, Tamarindo, while boasting world class surf almost all year. The small community of Nosara offers visitors a unique experience with a variety of moderate accommodations, activities such as surfing, fishing, horseback riding and more.

Nosara has become a popular destination for repeat visitors to Costa Rica who are looking for a different experience than Tamarindo or Hermosa. This is one of Costa Rica's most beautiful areas and the only noise that you will hear in Nosara is the sound of the waves crashing and the monkeys howling.

Breaks: Mal Pais

Best time December to April

Playa Santa Teresa

Good lefts and rights at this hollow beach break. Tends to pick up more swell than nearby breaks and holds shape better at low tide. Take a right at the crossroads and continue 3km. Best conditions on west/southwest swell.

Manzanillo

An offshore reef break at the north end of the beach with the same name. When the swell is big, it works, fickle otherwise.

Playa Carmen

A beach break that peaks with some rock reef. This wave offers a long right wall and a shorter left breaking over a sloping sand bottom. When these breaks get big, try the nearby reef breaks in Manzanillo or to the south of Carmen. Best conditions on west/southwest swell.

Los Suecos

A lefthander with a fast take off followed by a long workable wall. Gets hollow with size and offshore winds. Needs a good swell. Not for beginners.

Punta Barrigona

A long lefthander wraps round the point turning into a great hot dog wave as it moves through the inside. Needs a lot of swell to work properly. Not for beginners.

Surfing in Mal Pais Costa Rica

Getting To Mal Pais

Map of Mal Pais Costa Rica Surfing Locations
Click Map to Enlarge
Large Map of Mal Pais Costa Rica Surf Spots

Mal País is accessed by taking a ferry from Puntarenas to Paquera and then driving about 1 hour on mostly paved road into town. From Guanacaste drive south through Nosara, Sámara and Coyote, ford the Río Bongo and continue through Manzanillo to Malpaís. Several stretches between Coyote and Manzanillo are along the beach, so make sure the tide is low. This route is only possible with a 4x4 during dry season.

Hotels near Mal Pais

Mal País is located on the southern tip of the Nicoya Peninsula, is another rising, yet still fairly untouched, surf destination in Costa Rica. Mal Pais/Santa Teresa is a very small community scattered along the pale, gold beaches with a beautiful backdrop of green vegetation.

This area is ideal for surfers looking for a remote surfing experience with no nightlife, just good, consistent waves and a great atmosphere. Most waves in the area are best for intermediate surfers, however a large swell will put the area's more fickle reef breaks in epic form for advanced surfers.

Breaks: Playa Hermosa

Best time May - November

Boca Barranca

a long left point break in front of a rivermouth, when it's working the ride can last almost a kilometer! Considered the second longest wave in Costa. Excellent long board wave, and for hitting the lip on a short board. You can see the break and people surfing from the road when crossing that small bridge in Puntarenas. Best on a south swell at low tide. Also it's best to surf it early to avoid crowds and catch it glassy. The wind usually comes onshore in the early afternoon. Water can be extremely dirty after a rain so be prepared!

Caldera

This break needs a large swell from the south/southwest. Just to the south, you will find "El Hoyo" which is a thick, hollow right hand which forms off a jetty and breaks over a sand bar. It is more consistent than Boca Barranca. To get to “El Hoyo," you must enter the port and "convince" the guard to let you through. Stay in Jacó and travel to Caldera in the morning. Caldera does need a swell before it starts working. Surfing at high tide is best.

Playa Tivives and Valor

Offering a variety of lefts and rights, beach breaks and rocky points (Valor). Tivives offers rights & lefts breaking with strong currents; the mouth of the river creates and almost perfect, tubular left (beware of crocs & dirty water). Valor is accessed by paddling across the river. Best at incoming high tide with a south swell.

Playa Escondida

a horseshoe, A-frame reef break with a powerful, hollow left and mellower right. Be aware of low tides as rocks are exposed. Best at mid - high tide with a southwest/west swell. Boat access only from Herradura Bay.

Playa Jacó

long beach with lefts and rights breaking and sand bottom and rocks. This area is smaller than Hermosa and a good option for beginners. Best in front of Cabinas Alice at the south end, in front of Disco in the middle, and in front of Copacabana at the north end.

Roca Loca

Powerful, rocky right hand reef break off a large exposed rock. Lots of water moving around. You have to descend a steep cliff then paddle out in a small channel. It's best surfing this break with someone who has surfed there before, so they can show you the safe way to paddle in and out. Experienced surfers only! Best surfing when the tide is low.

Playa Hermosa

Powerful and consistent beach break that sticks out into the Pacific, assuring constant swell. You will rarely be surfing under head high here. It can be perfect sometimes, delivering a nice barrel, but at other times you might see the barreling waves all over the place, but have trouble finding that perfect wave for yourself! Hermosa is actually a several mile long stretch of beach, and you can go surfing anywhere along beach.

Terraza

a fast, hollow right breaking in front of a group of visible rocks. Several other breaks just south of this break offer less punishing waves breaking over a sandbar. Best conditions on a west/southwest swell from low to mid tide incoming.

Backyard

a very consistent sandbar located at the entrance to the dirt road in Hermosa. This wave breaks close to the beach and is generally hollow with rights and lefts. Best conditions on a southwest/west swell at mid - high tide incoming.

Almendro

breaking in deeper water than most of the hotel breaks, this break also offers a sand bottom with rights and lefts. Best conditions on a south/southwest swell at mid- high tide incoming.

Corners

breaking in even deeper water creating a little more size, more sand bottom rights and lefts. Generally bigger than northern breaks of Hermosa. Best conditions at low to mid tide and a west/southwest swell.

Tulin

located in front of the Soda Tulin about 10 minutes south of the Backyard, this break is consistently a few feet bigger than the hotel breaks. There is also a rivermouth break further south (with crocodiles) with a perfect line-up in ideal conditions. Best conditions at low tide on a west swell.

Esterillos

You can either surf Esterillos east or Esterillos west. Beach break peaks, usually with good shape. Both lefts and rights. Surfing is similar to Jaco/Hermosa. It closes out more at low tide, but can still produce a barrel. Better surfing it Mid-high tide

Surfing in Playa Hermosa Costa Rica

Getting To Playa Hermosa

Map of Playa Hermosa Jaco Costa Rica Surfing Locations
Click Map to Enlarge
Large Map of Playa Hermosa Jaco Costa Rica Surf Spots

One of Hermosa's greatest advantages: located just 2 hours on paved road from the international airport in San José

Hotels in Playa Hermosa

Playa Hermosa and nearby Jacó is THE definitive surf Mecca of the central pacific coast. This area arguably offers the most consistent year-round surf with over 3 ½ miles of steep beaches with excellent exposure to swells from almost any direction. Playa Hermosa is a small community of surfer friendly hotels and small restaurants & all accommodations are located beachfront with surf right out the door. Because the surf in Playa Hermosa is more challenging than nearby Jacó, this area attracts a more experienced surfer.

Playa Jacó, located just 2 hours from the International airport, has become one of Costa Rica's most visited beach towns, especially amongst the traveling surf community. Jacó is a small, yet extremely active town geared towards surfers, parties & nightlife. As you walk down the "strip," you will find countless surf shops, restaurants, bars, discos and a variety of accommodations.

Breaks: Manuel Antonio

Best time from May to November

Boca Damas

Access by boat only, a very strong, and hollow right. This wave is best at low tide filling in with a mid size to large swell from the northwest or west.

Quepos

Long left with some perfect sections that breaks right in front of the town, visible from the road. Slightly sheltered from swell, need to be some size before this break even starts working, but when it's good it's good. Mostly a fishing town, Quepos is right between two favorite areas for surfers: Dominical/Pavones and Jacó/Hermosa. This is a great place to stop for lunch when traveling. Mostly it gets checked, and surfers continue on

Playitas

a short beach break located at the northern most end of the beach in Manuel Antonio. Best conditions with a medium to large swell from the south/southwest at mid to high tide. With a big swell, you can also surf the outer reef with offers long, open rights, ideal for long boarding by paddling across the river... beware of crocodiles!

Mar y Sombra

With the presence of a large swell, this beach break offers a strong & often tubular left and right. Best conditions at mid to high tide and a large swell from the south/southwest.

Playa El Rey

Very similar to Playa Hermosa; this isolated beach break offers lefts and rights that close out with the presence of a big swell. Always bigger than nearby breaks so if you are in Manuel Antonio with non-surfers and are looking for relief, check this place out. No crowds with several peaks and is only accessible via a palm plantation about 15 minutes south of Quepos. Best conditions at mid - high tide incoming.

Surfing in Manuel Antonio Costa Rica

Getting to Manuel Antonio

Map of Quepos Manuel Antonio Costa Rica Surfing Locations
Click Map to Enlarge
Large Map of Manuel Antonio Jaco Costa Rica Surfing Locations

Manuel Antonio is accessed by a paved road (almost completely) from San José (3 hours) or by a shuttle flight into the local airport in Quepos (no boards over 7 feet).

Hotels: Manuel Antonio

Manuel Antonio is a beautiful town located about 45 minutes south of Hermosa offering beginner surfers, or surfers traveling with non-surfing partners, an excellent destination. Manuel Antonio combines breathtaking jungle and ocean views, exotic beaches, unique wildlife, a wide variety of adventure activities, friendly local & tourist community and plenty of restaurants and bars creating an unforgettable experience for travelers of all walks of life.

Although this area is not known as a prime surfer destination like Jacó, there are some fun beach breaks at the local beaches and some excellent uncrowned breaks within a short drive.

Breaks: Dominical

Best time from May to November

Playa Dominical

Strong beach break with lefts and rights. Fairly consistent break, located about 45 minutes south of Quepos. The northern end of the beach offers bigger sets while the southern end is better for intermediate surfers. Best conditions at mid - high tide.

Surfing in Dominical Costa Rica

Getting To Dominical

Map of Playa Dominical Costa Rica Surfing Locations
Click Map to Enlarge
Large Map of Playa Dominical Costa Rica Surf Spots

Dominical is accessed by a dirt/gravel road from Manuel Antonio (1 hour) which can be accessed by paved road from San José or shuttle flight into the local airport of Quepos.

Hotels near Dominical

Dominical is a good option for those looking for similar conditions to Playa Hermosa in a more relaxed atmosphere. The surf here is mostly beach break, however, tends to close out on bigger swells as it is not as steep as Hermosa. There is a point break just to the south which offers some good surf on a bigger swell.

Where the Talamanca Mountain Range gently slopes into the South Pacific Ocean and waterfalls cascade down and spill onto the beaches, you will find the small town of Dominical. Dominical, is a small laid back town surrounded by pristine rainforest and beautiful coastlines. This surfer’s paradise offers great surf, numerous local restaurants, bars and a wild nightlife. Dominical is geared towards serious surfers who wish to avoid the heavy crowds of Playa Hermosa and are looking for a more relaxed, tropical atmosphere.

Surfing in Drake Bay Costa Rica

Getting to Drake Bay

Map of Drake Bay Costa Rica Surfing Locations
Click Map to Enlarge
Large Map of Drake Bay Costa Rica Surf Spot

Hotels near Drake Bay

There are a few breaks, rarely surfed due to the fact it is very hard to get there. Rio Sierpe is rumored to be an excellent rivermouth break. Uncrowded surfing for the hardcore! Daily flights are available from San José.

Breaks: Matapalo

Best time from May to November

Playa Matapalo

A powerful and steep right hand wave that breaks best at mid tide offering fast rides. Because it faces the open ocean, it picks up more swells & is more consistent than nearby breaks. Best conditions at mid tide and a west/southwest swell.

Backwash

A large, yet slow right that breaks over a reef in the middle of breathtaking Backwash Bay. Due to the steep beach, the waves generally jack up creating steep sections; great long boarding. Not as consistent as Matapalo, however, when it is going off, outshines Matapalo. Best conditions from mid- low tide and south/west swell.

Pan Dulce

A long right point break that needs a large swell to work. With ideal conditions, you can expect up to 500 yd tubular rides. This wave has several fast sections that break over a rocky bottom. Best conditions with a large swell from the south at mid tide.

Surfing in Matapalo Costa Rica

Getting to Matapalo

Map of Matapalo Costa Rica Surfing Locations
Click Map to Enlarge
Large Map of Matapalo Costa Rica Surf Spots

Access to Matapalo is via a paved road from San José all the way down south (there are some sections towards the end that are not paved…4x4 recommended) or via a shuttle flight to the local airport of Puerto Jimenez and then a one hour ride into Matapalo.

Situated on the extreme tip of the Osa Peninsula, Matapalo combines dense jungles, breathtaking beaches, world class surfing in a peaceful, remote setting. However, there are several downsides to staying in Matapalo. First of all, the surf is not very consistent. Second, because this area is one of Costa Rica's few remaining pristine destinations, the "locals," (which in this case, any American who got there before you), are not very welcoming to new faces. Also, it is important to mention that this area is extremely remote and all power here is provided by solar energy. There are no restaurants, bars, shops and therefore, all hotels include all meals in their stay (which means rustic accommodations, does not mean "rustic" prices!

Breaks: Pavones

Best time from May to November

Pavones

The legendary Pavones... point break left, with great distance in rides - almost .75 miles. Yes, that's miles. Obviously, one of the longer breaks in the world. This break is erratic but when it's good, it's really good.

Punta Banco

a reef break with rights and lefts located just south of Pavones. Good place to check out if Pavones is too small or too crowded. Best conditions at mid to high tide with a swell from the south, or west

Punta Burica

Access by boat only (South) - Welcome to the end of the world. Very, remote & powerful reef breaks located on the very tip of Costa Rica on the border of Panama. Best conditions with a swell from the south or SSW. Accessible only by boat.

Surfing in Pavones Costa Rica

Getting to Pavones

Map of Pavones Costa Rica Surfing Locations
Click Map to Enlarge
Larger Map of Pavones Costa Rica Surf spots

Access to Pavones is achieved via a paved road all the way down south about 8 hours drive) or fly into Golfito (no boards over 7ft) and catch a taxi ride down to Pavones.

Legendary left point break that can deliver rides almost 3/4 mile long on a good swell. One of the best, longest waves in Costa Rica! Surfing Pavones can be incredible when it's good, but it's fickle. Rideable on all tides, but it tends to close out less on mid-high tides. On low tides the cobblestones become more visible, and the paddle in and out becomes a lesson, but at least the rocks are smooth.

The wave has several sections which allow for carving, pumping and, of course, showing off for the folks sipping on their Imperials at the Cantina at the end of the break. This area is extremely remote and if you can catch it on a good day, the logistical nightmares surrounding your arrival will be well worth it.

However, there are many things to consider before traveling to Pavones. Due to its location on the interior of the Golfo Dulce, it is blocked from many swells and can go for weeks with no surf. Moreover, once the swell hits, it is common to see a large crowd of international travelers (+ the protective locals) battling for position. We recommend not going here until you know there is surf... because once you get there; it's a long way back!

Breaks: Puerto Viejo

Best time November to March

Westfalia

Stretch of beach break lefts and rights visible from the road between Limon and Cahuita. Consistent waves year-round, but it closes out if it gets overhead. Pick your own break and go surfing!

Isla Uvita

Access by boat only, this island located off the coast of Limon offers an excellent, yet, dangerous left that breaks on a reef. This is most powerful left in Costa Rica with three sections and facing a coral reef. Best days offer waves with 10 ft faces.

Playa Negra

Offers a great beach break with waves year round. Best conditions in the early morning with swell from the south or east at almost any tide.

Salsa Brava

offers both lefts and rights however the right is generally faster, with a steep entry. This is most powerful wave in Costa Rica and the best conditions with an easterly swell which can produce up to triple overhead surf.

Playa Cocles

This beach break offers a more consistent break with lefts and rights breaking close to the beach. This wave tends to jack up with a big swell due to the steep beach entry, beware of currents! Best conditions in the early morning before the winds blow it out. However, you can surf here all day as the wind often improves the lack of form.

Surfing in Puerto Viejo Costa Rica

Getting to Puerto Viejo

Map of Puerto Viejo Costa Rica Surfing Locations
Click Map to Enlarge
Large Map of Puerto Viejo Costa Rica Surf Spots

Drive 2-3 hours east from San José until you reach Limón and take a right and continue for one hour until you reach Puerto Viejo

Hotels near Puerto Viejo

Puerto Viejo has certainly most known for being home to what has been called the heaviest wave in Costa Rica: Salsa Brava. Salsa, although fickle, has definitely earned this reputation offering a thick "sauce" breaking over a shallow reef. The wave is very competitive and certainly, for experts only. More intermediate surfers can check out the beach break just south at Playa Cocles.

The Caribbean coast is quite different than the Pacific as you will find it is not as nearly built up and the culture/atmosphere is even more laid back than other parts of Costa Rica.

Lessons can be arranged directly at surf shops. They will take you out, usually at low tide, and teach you to catch and stand up on whitewater and smaller "inside" waves. If the conditions are right and you are doing well, they'll try to get you into some bigger waves. Here are some schools, for more information please contact us.

Del Mar Surf Camp

Playa Grande

Tamarindo Surf School

Corky Carroll's

Safari Surf School

Shaka Surf Camp

Costa Rica Surf Camp

Tropical Surf School

Playa Grande Surf School, Tamarindo Costa Rica

Located at the heart of Las Baulas de Guanacaste Nature Preserve in Playa Grande (Tamarindo), the surf camp lies 100 meters from a large, white sandy beach. A sanctuary for both turtles and surfers, this beach has some of the best beach breaks in the country. Accommodation is in cabanas and the surf camp also has a self catering kitchen and barbecue for guests to share, as well as a swimming pool. The camp is 15 minutes walk and boat crossing from Tamarindo, on the other side of the river estuary. Inquire Now!

Tamarindo Surf School, Tamarindo Costa Rica

They offer surf lessons for all levels, located in the heart of Tamarindo. This location allows for fast access to famous beaches like Avellanas, Playa Grande and Playa Negra. We also have trips available for experienced surfers who seek great adventures at the world renown Roca Bruja "Witch Rock" and Ollie’s Point. Inquire Now!

Corky Carroll's Surf School, Tamarindo and Jacó Costa Rica

Located in the thick of the jungle in a secluded community served by dirt roads, far away from the commercial beaches of Tamarindo and Jaco The local vibe is “pura vida” in and out of the water.

Your guides and teachers will immerse you in the friendly, unspoiled rural community. Our goal is to make your journey the trip of a lifetime. You will not be a tourist on your trip, rather a member of the community as we will dial you in as a local. There are many lesson packages to choose from. Inquire Now!

Safari Surf School – Nosara and Santa Teresa Costa Rica

Safari Surf School is the premier surf school and surf camp in Costa Rica. In addition to instilling a passion for surfing, you'll also be immersed in native culture and treated to local style. This is the only surf school included in "Best Outfitters on Earth" By National Geographic Adventures". Safari Surf School is an ISA certified school. The Safari Surf School instructors are licensed in CPR and life saving technique. You can also add yoga lessons into your daily routine and if yoga’s not your bag then they offer additional full body massages as a substitute! In the area you can also go canopy, snorkeling, horseback riding, hiking, taking an ATV to the waterfalls, kayaking, and fishing. Inquire Now!

Del Mar Surf Camp – (Girls only) Playa Hermosa, Jacó Costa Rica

Del Mar, is located on the beautiful Central Pacific Coast, an ideal surfing spot for all levels. They offer well-rounded program with a mix of surfing, yoga, hiking, and massage. A day at camp often begins with an early morning hike into the surrounding mountains, where you can see monkeys, toucans and the amazing views of the sunrise; it’s a great spot to check the waves too! After hiking, if the tide is right, you will go straight to the ocean where the experienced bilingual instructors take you to the perfect surfing spot for your ability. Catching and standing up on your first wave is a once in a life time experience that you will never forget! Inquire Now!

Shaka Surf Camp – Mal País, Santa Teresa Costa Rica

New surf school just steps from beautiful Playa Hermosa beach near Mal Pais and Santa Teresa. Shaka provides world class surf instruction with the beginner, intermediate and adaptive surfer in mind. Our resort welcomes families, couples, single travelers, or groups. The camp is a quick 3 minute walk to one of the largest and most beautiful beaches in our region. The beach is very quiet, secluded, and has an amazing sand bar beach break which is great for all levels of surfing. The break offers year round warm water and excellent waves. Playa Hermosa is just north of Santa Teresa and south of Manzanillo. It is a residential living community surrounded by endless beaches and tropical rainforests; you will enjoy breathtaking views of the ocean, landscape, and local wildlife. Inquire Now!

Costa Rica Surf Camp – Dominical Costa Rica

Costa Rica Surf Camp is located in beautiful Playa Dominical, one of the greenest areas of the country with wonderful waves and people. Costa Rica Surf Camp offers a variety of options so you can have the best vacation, surfing experience and enjoyment of tours in the Dominical area where the water and air temperatures are 85 degrees. Playa Dominical breaks 365 days a year so students and visitors can count on having waves for their surfing vacation. Beach break is safer than reef break and offers small waves on the inside for beginners, and larger waves outside for advanced surfers. Playa Dominical is a small surfing town with night life at a few bars and restaurants, and small friendly hotels. Inquire Now!

Tropical Surf School - Quepos, Manuel Antonio Costa Rica

Tropical Surf School was founded in 2004, in need for qualified, professional surf-instruction in the Quepos/Manuel Antonio area. Many people, including tourist and ticos, have wanted to learn to surf but it hasn’t been easy to find good, qualified surf instructors in the area. Quepos is very near one of the most visited national parks in Costa Rica, Parque Nacional Manuel Antonio. Manuel Antonio is known for spectacular coastal scenery and an incredible diversity of wildlife. Here there is a great balance between nature, scenery, wildlife, and world-class accommodation and restaurants. The area is also known for consistent waves, year-round, with options for beginners and experienced surfers alike. They know where to find waves to suit anyone; smaller waves to start on, or larger, more powerful waves for the more experienced. Inquire Now!

All Girls Surf Camp Trips/ Yoga / Fitness Training

By: Maria del Mar
Owner - Del Mar Surf Camp


Maria del Mar - Owner Del Mar Surf Camp, Costa RicaOne of the most wonderful things about Costa Rica is the surfing. Our many beaches on two coasts provide hundreds of fantastic, reliable and consistent spots for surfers of every level and our water is so warm you don't need to wear a wet suit. People travel here from around the world to experience our waves. I am in love with the sport and my passion is sharing the knowledge I have acquired after surfing for many years. I am the owner of Del Mar Surf Camp in Hermosa, and my program is designed to teach women how to surf and to feel great in the water. My skilled instructors and I are committed to getting every guest up on her board and carving out thrilling rides. The local waves are gentle and perfectly shaped for beginners so you'll be cruising in no time. If you are already a surfer, I'll take you to harder breaks and we can rip side by side. It's the most fun sport in the world!

My program is also special because we guide guests into once-in-a-lifetime physical shape. Surfing is an amazing workout. It works your arms, your abs, your legs. My guests get into bikini-perfect shape in a matter of days and they feel great. I have also discovered an exceptional yoga studio near the ocean in the jungle and our surfing is balanced with daily yoga classes to stretch and strengthen your muscles. This is not "resort" yoga that is cursory and superficial - it is the real deal with the teachers who have trained in India and California. My guests tell me they feel "blissed out" at the end of every class. But believe me, that's nothing compared to the elation of riding your first wave. Click to see more pictures of surf girls having fun

I love being outside and fitness is the core of my life, so I schedule daily hikes between surfing sessions. If you are game, I'd love to hike with you and tell you all about the lush local wildlife we will see, from monkeys to toucans, to beautiful blue butterflies (Morho Peleide) . We'll also spend a morning horseback riding to a hidden waterfall, one of my favorite secret spots in the area.

Don't worry, though, I won't push you too hard. Make sure to bring a good book because there's plenty of beach hang-out time and I also schedule a massage and pedicure for my guests for a little delicious pampering. Guests stay at a beachfront hotel so any time you want to take a break you can wander outside, grab a towel and take a dip. Ahhhhh.

If you're an uber-athlete, we're ready to rock. If you are just learning about fitness and feeling strong, we'll so happily work at your level. I only take a handful of guests at a time, so our program is flexible. My goal is to teach women to surf and to help them experience the joy of enjoying sports and most importantly, to have fun! My friends and I can't wait to show you to our favorite restaurants and surfer hangs, and we'll even take you shopping to the best custom bikini designer in Costa Rica. Welcome to my world - I can't wait to share it with you. I feel like I have the keys to a magical experience and I want you to share it with me. Simply put, I want you to enjoy my home, a place that I feel is truly paradise.

Inquire Now! Pura Vida,

Maria del Mar
Owner - Del Mar Surf Camp
Go to the Del Mar Surf Camp website.


Costa Rica, The Warm Water Surfing Paradise!

By Gloriana Brenes:


Gloriana Brenes - surfing camp school instructor, professional guide
  • Former Caribbean Waves Surf Camp School Director / Instructor
  • Surfer, raised in Puerto Viejo, home of Salsa Brava (Caribbean Coast).
  • Years Surfing: 7.
  • Years teaching: 3 (certified Emergency First Responce, Primary & Secundary Care (CPR / AED / First Aid)).
  • Surfed on breaks around the world: Biarritz, France; Zarauz, Spain; Tel Aviv, Israel; Bingin, Impossibles, Bali; Puerto Cruz, Parguito, Margarita Island of Venezuela and all around Costa Rica.
  • PADI Advanced Open Water Certified Scuba Diver.
  • Lived on Margarita Island of Venezuela for a year studying Dzogchen and teachings kids to surf.
  • Studied Anthropology in the University of Costa Rica.
  • Competitive swimmer for 6 years; surf school instructor.

Since the time when surfing started in Hawaii, many adventurous surfers came to Costa Rica and discovered our waves; but kept them a secret. Eventually as time went by, many of the local people became interested and now, surfing is one of the most popular sports in Costa Rica and in the world!

Because of Costa Rica's perfect surfing conditions, it has turned out to be one of the hottest places to visit and it is ideal for both the beginner and professional surfer. The warm water, beautiful beaches, sunny skies, spectacular nature, easy going locals, friendly sharks!...but especially the great variety of waves makes Costa Rica just perfect. Costa Rica also has an unusual strategic position that within just a few hours you can surf at sunrise at the Caribbean coast, and later in the day, watch the sunset over on the pacific side, catching a different set of waves!

Warm Water Surfing in Costa Rica & Great Waves for Beginners!

Learning to surf in Costa Rica - warm water surfing For instance on the Caribbean / Atlantic side, you have amazing reef breaks like the very famous Salsa Brava and Isla Uvita, and also the beach breaks like the one in Cocles Beach and Manzanillo. This will also give you the opportunity to see more of the different kinds of Costa Rican cultures. Enjoy the jungle and the mixture of cultures between the black Afro-Jamaican and the indigenous people of the Bri-bris. Get the Rastafarian way of life and have great snorkeling in the Gandoca-Mazanillo Refuge. Enjoy a fresh lobster and the local dish of rice and beans (cooked with coconut milk) along the sea in Puerto Viejo or other laid back villages.

Then, go over to the Pacific side where you have the world's longest left side waves in Pavones, the well known Witch's Rock for the perfect left and right break with the longest barrels, and of course Hermosa's beach break where you always come out with a great smile! Over on the Pacific side you have the cowboys, the real "ticos", the mixture of the best quality service and food and where you can just indulge watching the most astonishing sunsets that you will never forget. Try Mal Pais' west facing beach. Incredible surfing, too!!

Every beach in Costa Rica has a specific "direction". So when the swell (waves in a particular direction) comes, not all the beaches have conditions for the waves to be perfect. So if you are travelling only for a short time and you want to have a good surf vacation, it is better that you get a guide. In this way you don't waste time and miss the waves.


Storm Surf Break, Mal Pais / Santa Teresa at "Suck Rock" Break!

You gotta be really good to surf this wave - crazy helps, too! Almost every beach is "surf-able" but you must know which time of the day is the best time. Over at the Pacific side you have the high and low tide. When there is low tide, the water goes back, it get dryer, shallower, there are currents, and in some beaches the waves will completely disappear. And when there is high tide, the water is nearer the shore, the waves are thicker and that makes them more difficult to catch. So depending on the beach, the waves could be better in low tide, and in others it would be better on the high tide.

For those who haven't yet had the magic experience of riding the waves, but are willing to try it out, there are plenty of options. The first thing that you must know is that anyone can surf, no matter if you are 8 years old or 70 years old, as long as you are careful. You can rent your own surf board and try it by your self if you have plenty of time, or have someone, like a surf guide, who can instruct you. Surfing is something that will get you addicted to once you can ride a wave, but before you get to do that magical point you will have to be careful. If you are on your own, you need to take care of other surfers or people who are around you, with the waves, and even with your own board! So surfing by your self requires strong will, determination and observing.

Nowadays there are many ways to learn. You can practice outside on the sand, and learn about the different kind of waves, the pop up, and the safety tips. Instructors usually make learning to surf a nice experience instead of a life threatening experience! (Joke!)

Whether you are going to body surf, kayak surf, boogie board or regular board surf, Costa Rica is the perfect place to do all of that. Then, enjoy and have a wonderful time going to volcanoes, hiking thru great nature, and savoring the local flavor and friendly people. Pura Vida!

Gloriana Brenes