Best Beaches to Surf in the Tamarindo Area

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The town, Tamarindo is the surfer’s home base of the North Pacific region of Costa Rica with all the convenient facilities (hotels, car rentals, banks, restaurants, surf shops, etc.) all with premium surfing opportunities right out front.

Although the surf can reach epic conditions, all the main spots within the bay are extremely fickle. However, you definitely want to base your self here while on your hunt for the surf spots such like Roca Bruja, Playa Grande, Playa Negra or Avellanas.

Tamarindo features pristine blue waters in the dry season, hot tropical weather and is known for its natural beauty. Tamarindo is also the ideal place for learning how to surf, hanging out and meeting people. Note: Tamarindo is protected by a Big bay, so when the big stormy swells blast the area, it becomes the cleanest place to surf.

Best beaches to surf in the Tamarindo area:

PICO GRANDE: This is a flaky right-hander that breaks next to the rock in front of TCR’s corporate headquarters on the main strip in Tamaraindo.

EL ESTERO DE TAMA: This is the area in front and south of the river mouth in Tamarindo, solid right-hander with hollow sections and frequent perfect barrels.

PLAYA GRANDE:  During the dry season with the Papagayo winds and a small or medium size swell (3 to 6 ft) can be absolutely amazing, with turquoise water and perfect A-frame peaks that will break with almond shape and flawless consistency. Playa Grande on a classic day has numerous pristine barrels; it makes this spot one of the best beach breaks of the country. Naturally, Playa Grande doesn’t hold big swells and will become a close out wave.

PLAYA AVELLANAS/PLAYA NEGRA: As you may have already seen in the Endless Summer movie, Playa Negra is the wave you travel thousands of kilometers for. This spot is surfed at all tides, but most people are there for high tide. Stay on the beach and wait until surfers get tired and then paddle out. Otherwise, forget it. At low tide, this wave is dangerous: the rocks are sharp and there is little water to cushion them. This is also the time you can accomplish your wildest barrel ridding dreams. As the ride gets higher, the bowls fill up with more water and give the wave a better flow. Playa Negra is very consistent all year round and breaks best on solid NW or SW swells. If you are a beginner Playa Negra is not for you, PERIOD.

Playa Grande - Playa Ventana

Playa Grande – Playa Ventana

Playa Tamarindo

Playa Tamarindo


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