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Teiki Mathieu Baillan surfing a self-made Alaya surfboard in Macaroni, Mentawaï, Indonesia. Photo by C. Naslain, 2009.

Surf spot atlas made by surfers for surfers
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 Costa rica

Central America

Costa Rica is a well known and well developed surfing destination - especially since featuring in Endless Summer 2; direct flights from the USA also add to its popularity. The country is safe, beautiful, friendly and blessed with great surfing on both coasts. It is, however one of the more expensive countries in the central and south Americas, with the positive aspect that hotels are good quality and car rental relatively easy and safe.

The surfing can be broken into three main areas: The Pacific North (Guanacaste-Nicoya), the Pacific South (Punta Arenas) and the Caribbean. Surf towns are developing in places such as Jaco, Tamarindo and Puerto Viejo. Year round warm water, warm air and offshore breezes (in Guanacaste) make for great conditions. The best waves occur in the rainy season (northern Hemisphere 'summer') on the pacific side, and in the hot dry season ('winter') on the Caribbean - ensuring that you should be able to find surf someplace.

The rainy season (especialy September and October) are very wet - with most of the countries secondary roads becoming impassable (even to 4x4s).
Location: Middle America, bordering both the Caribbean Sea and the North Pacific Ocean, between Nicaragua and Panama
Geographic coordinates: 10 00 N, 84 00 W
Coastline: 1,290 km
Climate: tropical and subtropical; dry season (December to April); rainy season (May to November); cooler in highlands
Terrain: coastal plains separated by rugged mountains
Natural hazards: occasional earthquakes, hurricanes along Atlantic coast; frequent flooding of lowlands at onset of rainy season and landslides; active volcanoes.

Geographic coordinates: 0° 0' S, 0° 0' W
Coastline km: km
Natural hazards:

More details

Jan/Feb Mar/Apr May/Jun Jul/Aug Sep/Oct Nov/Dec
Best Surfing Season            
Typical Swell Size            
Surf Equipment
Water temp.            
Air temp.            

Seasonal swell & wind variations

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Zones (3) Surf Spots Sub zones
Guanacaste 43 0
Pacific South 41 0
Caribbean 12 0


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Costa Rica

Costa Rica

Playa cocles
Costa Rica

Playa cocles
Costa Rica

 Last surf sessions

Show all (66)...

Playa Negra
By sert
Feb 7, 2016
cumpleaños -
AB301 avatar
Playa Grande
By AB301
Aug 24, 2012
- This was one of the funnest spots I surfed in CR. It is very accesible and there is a parking attendent that will watch your car for a few Colones. This break is best at mid to high tide.
DrC123 avatar
Playa Grande
By DrC123
Jul 27, 2011
Fast and furious - Read Tamarindo tubes
DrC123 avatar
Playa Negra
By DrC123
Jul 27, 2011
Pura Vida - Read Tamarindo Tubes
DrC123 avatar
Playa Avellana
By DrC123
Jul 26, 2011
Her name was Lola - More known for Lola the pig and bar than the waves. Was more crowded than Playa Grande and not as good!   See Tamarindo tubes Trip:

 Last surf trips

Show all (5)...

Trip: the rest of my cr trip
By asharktaco
From Jan 27, 2009 to Jan 27, 2009
I found a job, and ive been in manuel antonio up until oct.. surfing everyday. usually chest high or better. some days in the double overhead range. solid surfing more days than not, just got to wait for it. watch out for the rocks on the inside, i

Trip: 1st Costa Rica
By surfindestin
From Nov 9, 2006 to Nov 23, 2006

Nev avatar
Trip: Costa Rica
By Nev
From Jul 29, 2005 to Aug 31, 2005

jcannon001 avatar
Trip: Costa Rica Nosara & Tamarindo
By jcannon001
From May 14, 2003 to May 24, 2003

JM Bird avatar
Trip: Costa Rica 96
By JM Bird
From Jan 13, 1996 to Feb 3, 1996
Costa Rica - 1996 Pura Vida! 


Add comment

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By dstange , 16-07-2013

4x4 or 2x4 car in January? - I'm going to Costa Rica (Avellanas, Guiones, Santa Teresa, Esterillos e Limon) in January (dry season). Even so I need a 4x4 car, or in the dry season I can take a 2x4?
Thanks a lot for the opinions!

By tropixman , 24-11-2011

Coming to Costa Rica next week - Hola,

I'm coming to Costa Rica from Dec 2 thru 11 and am looking to rent a good fun 6'6 or 7'0 board. I can rent or barter, bringing you something from California that you've been craving.

If you need anything from California and we can work something out, let me know.

I'll be driving all over Costa Rica, so let me know where you are, what you have to offer and what kind of waves you have nearby.




Voy a Costa Rica de 02 de diciembre al 11 y estoy buscando alquilar un 6'6 diversión o la junta 7'0. Puedo alquilar o trueque, con lo que algo de California que ha estado anhelando.

Si usted necesita cualquier cosa, desde California y podemos trabajar en algo, hágamelo saber.

Voy a ser la conducción en todo Costa Rica, por lo que me haga saber dónde se encuentra, lo que tiene que ofrecer y qué tipo de olas que han cercano.



By elena_vargasf , 03-06-2011

Surfing in Costa Rica - I am local and I recommend coming to Jaco and Hermosa for surfing.
For those who want to buy a use one, you can find good deals around $200. or even buy a custom made around $350

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