We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Surf’s always up in the Costa Rican beach town of Santa Teresa. Bright sun and... more
1
Santa Teresa
Surf’s always up in the Costa Rican beach town of Santa Teresa. Bright sun and gleaming sands make the perfect backdrop to hang ten in the crystal-clear waters, and fishing, snorkeling and kite-surfing are popular among vacationers. Yoga and spa services are a must for the ultimate relaxation, and, at night, catch a glorious sunset on the same beach where earlier you caught a wave.
Book your perfect hotel in Santa Teresa
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
La Fortuna de San Carlos is at the center of an array of geological wonders. ... more
2
La Fortuna de San Carlos
La Fortuna de San Carlos is at the center of an array of geological wonders.  The nearby Arenal is Costa Rica's most active volcano, routinely bursting with lava and ash, and the Catarata de La Fortuna is a waterfall pouring from a seventy-meter cliff.  The Tabacon Hot Springs are a relaxing intermission in the midst of the various spectacles, and the Leaves and Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat is a blissful end to any day's excursion.
Book your perfect hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Tamarindo is a prime spot for surfing and sportfishing, diving and sunning.... more
3
Tamarindo
Tamarindo is a prime spot for surfing and sportfishing, diving and sunning. Nesting leatherback turtles do their thing along the beaches from October to May and, for some nesting of your own, gorgeous beach houses, B&Bs and luxury hotels line the sunny sands. Shopping and dining options are superb and plentiful, perfect for sampling the true flavors of Costa Rica.
Book your perfect hotel in Tamarindo
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
A tiny village with two miles of pure white sand and fabulous conditions for... more
4
Uvita
A tiny village with two miles of pure white sand and fabulous conditions for swimming, Uvita might become your favorite place in Costa Rica. It's part of the Marino Ballena National Park (Whale Marine Park), named for humpback whales who meet and mate here every winter and spring. Take a boat ride to Caño Island, a nature reserve with incredible marine life.
Book your perfect hotel in Uvita
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Legend has it that notorious pirate Sir Francis Drake hid his treasures... more
5
Drake Bay
Legend has it that notorious pirate Sir Francis Drake hid his treasures somewhere in Drake Bay, hence the name. Doubloons or not, there are plenty of natural treasures to marvel over, like lush rainforests and colorful sea life. Invest in a guided hiking, diving, fishing, tubing or treetop canopy tour to get the full Drake Bay experience. “Tracie the Bug Lady” even offers a night tour to acquaint you with all of the local creepy crawlies.
Book your perfect hotel in Drake Bay
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Your morning in Nosara: Wake to the sounds of the jungle. Walk two minutes to... more
6
Nosara
Your morning in Nosara: Wake to the sounds of the jungle. Walk two minutes to Playa Guiones and do a few yoga poses at sunrise while surfers ride the waves. Wander north to Playa Pelada for a swim and spectacular views of the Pacific. Sound idyllic? Nosara, with its beaches free of developments, its tide pools, plus ziplining, wildlife rescue and more, is perfect for your extended holiday.
Book your perfect hotel in Nosara
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
A water sports and recreation gateway surrounded by palm-lined beaches and rocky... more
7
Playas del Coco
A water sports and recreation gateway surrounded by palm-lined beaches and rocky bays, Playas del Coco is under an hour from Liberia, Costa Rica’s Daniel Oduber Quiros International Aiport (LIR). Relax on white sand beaches or stroll the black sand beach beneath the cliffs at Playa Ocotal. Dive, snorkel, swim, surf, fish, bird-watch, kayak, sail, jet ski, hike, bike, golf, and horseback ride.
Book your perfect hotel in Playas del Coco
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
The tiny hamlet of Jaco is located in the Pacific Coast province of Puntarenas,... more
8
Jaco
The tiny hamlet of Jaco is located in the Pacific Coast province of Puntarenas, Costa Rica. It’s the ultimate hideaway for sun seekers and active travelers, with cinnamon-hued volcanic-sand beaches, lush green rain forest and verdant mountains. Surfers flock here from around the world, but families, and honeymooners also find much to love, thanks to the multitude of beaches, outdoor activities, dining, shopping and nightlife. Explore the Costa Rican rain forest by horseback, learning about the flora and fauna in this impressive eco-system. Take an ATV tour to beaches, remote villages and waterfalls. Try your hand at sport fishing, paragliding, sea kayaking or even bungee jumping. Spend an afternoon at the Pura Vida Gardens and Waterfalls, where you’ll find millions of plants, flowers and orchids from around the world. Zip line through the jungle, play a round of golf or take an aerial tram tour of the rain forest. Expert surfers will want to check out La Roca Loca and Playa Hermosa for a challenge.
Book your perfect hotel in Jaco
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy

Near the southernmost tip of Peninsula de Nicoya, Mal Pais offers rocky coves,...

more
9
Mal Pais

Near the southernmost tip of Peninsula de Nicoya, Mal Pais offers rocky coves, white sand beaches, waterfalls, rainforests, surfing, and relaxation near a remote fishing village and Cabo Blanco National Park. The prime attraction is surfing at beaches like Playa Mar Azul, Playa Santa Teresa, Playa Manzanillo, and Playa Carmen. Plus there is fishing, boating, snorkeling, diving, hiking, horseback riding, biking, and 4-wheel drive touring.

A 4-wheel drive vehicle comes in handy for navigating unpaved roads in this still mostly wild area, particularly during the rainy season. Though locals zip around on quad bikes and motorcycles transporting their surfboards. Allow the better part of a day driving from San Jose Costa Rica’s Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO) to Mal Pais. Budget extra time to board the car ferry from Puntarenas across the Golfo de Nicoya to Paquera on the Peninsula de Nicoya. Or take the short flight from San Jose to Tambor Airport (TMU), and be within an hour of Mal Pais.

Some Mal Pais beaches have little sand, and judging point break direction and swell size requires surfing acumen. A Mal Pais surf camp may be perfect for family members wanting to learn to read the surf better. Santa Teresa’s beaches have more white sand, and point breaks like Suck Rock are almost legendary among surfers flocking here when the seas around Playa Carmen get too rough. Playa Carmen has enough variety to accommodate all levels of surfers, but the swells can get too rough and too frequent to get out during the rainy season. A bit to the north, with waters calmed by a rock jetty, Playa Manzanillo is known for its annual sand castle competition.

Book your perfect hotel in Mal Pais
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
For eco-tourists who crave adventure there are few places better than Parque... more
10
Puerto Jimenez
For eco-tourists who crave adventure there are few places better than Parque Nacional Corcovado, a biodiverse smorgasbord of tropical rainforest, coastline and wildlife. Puerto Jimenez is a great base for those who wish to explore the park via one of several local touring companies, but it’s also got its own thing going on, including an impressive wildlife sanctuary, some lovely restaurants and an excellent local crafts shop.
Book your perfect hotel in Puerto Jimenez
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy