Costa Rica Beaches

Costa Rica Beaches


DESTINATION GUIDES

You know Costa Rica is an adventurer's paradise, but did you know that it's also a great country for a beach getaway? The nation boasts nearly 300 beaches, each with a unique draw and distinct setting. Whether you find yourself on Costa Rica's Caribbean coast exploring Puerto Viejo or Costa Rica's Pacific coast exploring Esterillos Oeste, you'll find something to discover and enjoy. Even on nearby beaches, the sand can vary from white, to black, or brown coloration, but it can get even more unique than that. Playa Conchal's sand is actually made of millions of crushed seashells! Some beaches even have sand so soft and fine it can only be described as 'fluffy.'

The best part about Costa Rica's beaches is how diverse they are; from swimming and surf adventures to basic rest and relaxation, there's bound to be a beach for you. Even better? There are plenty of Costa Rica beach resorts which will allow you to relax and indulge due to the variety of services and activities they'll have on-site. Meanwhile, beachfront hotels in Costa Rica will ensure that you're never more than steps from your next snorkeling expedition. In the morning you can sip your coffee whilst listening to the waves roll in — instead of listening to talk radio or your a.m. commuter mix. So, choose your own adventure and discover which of Costa Rica's beaches is right for you.

#1:  Manuel Antonio Beaches Where Rainforest Meets the Sea

You may have been to the beach recently, but when was the last time you really took the time to enjoy it? Listening to the gentle lapping of waves against the shore. Warm sand on your bare feet. Turning to gold in warm sunlight... This isn't a mere trip to the beach, it's your vacation in Manuel Antonio Costa Rica. Let's count all of the ways you will enjoy yourself...

First and foremost, you can go for a swim in the ocean. If you want to observe some of Costa Rica's extraordinary marine life up-close, then you'll definitely want to book yourself a snorkeling or diving adventure. You can also glide atop the water when you take a surfing lesson, kayak, or stand up paddleboarding. When you need a break from the waves, you can have a picnic on the beach, or engage in some photography and sketching. Many of the beaches are picturesque in part because they are so pristine — a byproduct of the Manuel Antonio National Park, a gracious 1,700 acres of land (683 ha) and 136,000 acres of ocean (55,000 ha).

When the Sun finally sinks down into the ocean (beach sunsets are the best), your oceanside evening is just beginning. On sultry nights, you can dine al fresco on fresh seafood. Fall asleep to the sound of the ocean when you stay near the beach, or choose a hotel in Manuel Antonio that offers a higher vantage point, and watch waves crash against the surf below.

Take time to appreciate how soothing and beautiful the coast really is when you book your Costa Rica beach vacation in Manuel Antonio.

#2:  The Very Fun Tamarindo Beach

If it's your first time exploring Costa Rica's beaches, then be sure to head to Tamarindo on the Guanacaste coast. This unique destination is sure to offer something for you — even if you're seeking access to luxury accommodations in a town that still has a laid-back vibe with a nightlife scene that will tempt you to stay up way past your bedtime.

Golden sunsets fade into a sapphire ocean in the evening, making this the perfect way to end the day trip you took out on a catamaran...the snorkeling was fantastic! On tomorrow's agenda: a canopy tour, followed by a surf lesson.

On those days when you need to take a break from all of your adventures, you can read the paper over an amazingly fresh cup of coffee, and then head to the local market to pick up some fresh food for an afternoon picnic on the beach. It's going to be so great to walk on warm sand, peek into tide pools, and listen to the sound of the ocean. Now this is a vacation...

#3:  Puerto Viejo de Limon — The Beach That's a Best Kept Secret Amongst Locals

Beachside fun is waiting for you in the burgeoning region of Puerto Viejo de Limon. Famous for surfing and popular with locals, the area isn't on the radar of most tourists...yet! That's okay — all the better for you to enjoy a Costa Rica beach vacation away from crowds. The only thing better than a surf lesson, beachside horseback ride, or Caribbean fishing expedition is doing it sans crowds.

You may hear Puerto Viejo de Limon referred to as simply 'Puerto Viejo' or Talamanca. Talamanca is the name Costa Rica's indigenous people ascribed to the region, and you can learn all about them on a cultural tour. Discover how the beaches and forests you enjoy for pleasure were (and remain) crucial to their livelihood.

The best way to appreciate Puerto Viejo de Limon, Costa Rica is to spend ample time enjoying it. Though you're sure to be lured by the canopy tours of the forest, don't forget to grab a pair of flippers for a snorkeling excursion — this is a beach vacation, after all! Better yet choose accommodations close enough to let you fall asleep to the sound of the ocean, and start your day with a relaxing bike ride or walk to the beach. Starting your day with briny sea air is surprisingly energizing and refreshing!

#4:  Beaches & Tropical Forest Surround Mal Pais- Santa Teresa

Situated on the southwestern end of Costa Rica's beautiful Nicoya Peninsula, Mal Pais & the beaches around Santa Teresa remain something of a hidden gem. Not yet on the radar of mass tourism and large scale developers, you can enjoy sharing beaches with a hip and "in the know" crowd. Walk along the alternating stretches of sandy beach and rocky shores. If you're going with your family, the rocky areas are great for observing creatures caught in tide pools! If you want yet another change of pace only a short drive north is the nearly deserted Manzanillo Beach.

The Mal País area is the choice when you want a quieter vibe. On the other hand the Santa Teresa attracts a younger and more outgoing crowd and therefore has a higher density of small hotels, restaurants, cafes and bars. The primary driver for the growth of the area aside from its beauty is its year round and consistent surf for both experts and beginners. Other activities throughout the area include fishing, snorkel, canopy and nature hikes in the nearby Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve.

In the mood for romance and have an appetite? The Santa Teresa and Mal pais region offers some of the best international cuisine in Costa Rica and we are happy to point you in the right direct for a world class meal. Your Anywhere Travel Expert can recommend a sunset dinner tour in El Carmen Beach as well. You'll enjoy one of Santa Teresa's nicest beaches, and watch the sunset as the two of you share a meal at a beachfront restaurant.

You can find hotels with elegant canopies and floor to ceiling folding windows, swimming pools and complimentary breakfasts, beach views, yoga studios, beachfront...in Santa Teresa and Mal Pais there is accommodation for every traveler. Whether you're a first time backpacker or a busy professional looking to unplug and unwind, Mal País and Santa Teresa offer you just the right amount of excitement and tranquility.

#5:  The Huge Crescent Beach of Samara

Welcome to the beach the locals love! Samara beach is a favorite of Ticos (native Costa Ricans). Located on the western shore of the pristine Nicoya Peninsula, this hamlet is both one of the prettiest and safest beaches in all of Costa Rica. White-sand beaches give way to vibrant waters, and the entirety of the region is graced by accents of luscious green foliage.

Samara is the beach of choice when you simply want to enjoy yourself. The town boasts a little bit of a nightlife scene, and a generous amount of restaurants, shops, and more. As for Samara accommodations, you can enjoy clean and cozy, unpretentious rooms or indulge in something luxurious. Whatever you choose, you'll never be too far from the beach — after all, that's the reason you're here!

Bask in golden sunlight, listen to the waves nestled in a hammock, or enjoy a variety of beach activities. You'll have a great time kayaking over aquamarine waters, birdwatching on the nearby Chora Island, snorkeling and enjoying coral reefs and marine wildlife, or simply going for a swim in calm and warm waters. You're at Samara Beach — there's no rush to choose your ideal beach adventure...even if that's nothing more than getting out of bed to play outside.

#6:  The Super Chill Playa Hermosa Guanacaste Beach

Literally meaning 'Beautiful Beach' Playa Hermosa lives up to its name. Grey sand and sapphire waters are augmented by the earthy greens and browns of the surrounding mountains. Playa Hermosa is the beach of choice when you want to simply slow down and enjoy a tropical atmosphere. There is no surf at this Playa Hermosa (there are at least 2 other Playa Hermosa's in Costa Rica - it can get confusing). The calm waters are very safe and it's as if the ocean is a giant swimming pool full of warm bath water.

In Playa Hermosa Guanacaste, it's all about the beach, so you won't have a difficult time finding access to hammocks, snorkeling excursions, afternoon boat rides, and leisurely swims. If you need a little more excitement, go scuba diving or sport fishing. You can visit nearby national parks for more rugged adventures, but the beach will always beckon you with its siren song.

Busy professionals looking to unwind will appreciate being able to choose from a large variety of mid-range and luxury accommodations — well designed and with full amenities, though economical options do exist too. Bottom line, this beach is one of your best options if you're looking for small amounts of fun in the sun, and large amounts of rest and relaxation.