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“Nature, advanture, surf, fun”

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Dreamsea Surf Glamping Tents
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 15, 2014 via mobile

If you love nature, advanture, surf and people with open heart which make your day full of new experiences, dreamsea surf camp is the right place for you. If you are looking just for comfort or ac room with tv and your own bathroom and you are scared of animals this is not the place for you.

Stayed: January 2014, traveled solo
3  Thank Tlachapoud
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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85 - 91 of 103 reviews

Reviewed January 11, 2014

Dreamsea, plain and simple, should not be open to short-term guests until they can straighten out their operation and ensure they're providing a safe, feasible option for people who are not in their surf camp program. I'd also warn anyone who cannot speak Spanish: you'll need to negotiate with cab drivers to take you to the camp from Tamarindo and you'll need to be fluent enough to explain directions confidently. If you're not fluent, you'll have a lot of trouble.

When booking, my boyfriend and I were impressed by the beautiful photos and impressive website that depict charming "glamping-style" tents. Given that it's a surf camp we expected a great location, close to the ocean and town. We're adventurous and outdoorsy so we were intrigued to find this unique spot. That romantic image and our excitement about this choice were quickly dismantled as soon as we arrived in Tamarindo.

No one in town has ever heard of this place. We were dropped off on the main road after our shuttle company called the manager who assured him it was a few hundred meters away and easily walkable. We couldn't find it based on his directions so we asked around with no luck, until finally a nice shop-owner agreed to call them again for us. We were told to wait there for a taxi that would be coming for us shortly. That was the first red flag as we had no idea a taxi would be required. Tamarindo is very small so taxis are pretty much unnecessary if you're staying local. We were greeted briefly by a camp staff member who walked us to the taxi, scribbled directions for the driver in the sand, then sent us along. At that point in our travels we were very experienced with the rugged, choppy dirt roads of Costa Rica but this was far worse. We drove for 20 minutes into the middle of the woods behind town, and the native-Tamarindo taxi driver started getting worried that he'd missed the turn off because there's *nothing* out there besides a few tractors - there are absolutely no signs directing you to the camp. Cell service is spotty and the day we arrived, the lines were supposedly completely down, so our driver had trouble reaching them but finally he got it straightened out and 10 minutes later we pulled up.

The camp could not be further from what you see in the photos. In fact, the photos on their site are from their camp in France, NOT Costa Rica - incredibly misleading and deceptive! There are a scattering of tents, a front-desk, some hammocks, a platform with cushions built out around a tree, some tables and few other huts. Our tent had a mattress on the floor, a couple pillows and a small loveseat. One light bulb hung from the pole in the center. We dropped off our bags and were given a quick tour. The camp staff was welcoming and encouraging, clearly excited to have guests. We were dismayed and disappointed already, anticipating how difficult it would be to enjoy Tamarindo and the beach, but tried to shake it off and give it a chance. We asked how we could get back and forth to town - there is nothing to do at camp during the day and the obvious appeal of Tamarindo is the beach but it seemed impossible to get there. The director hastily mentioned a rough shuttle schedule or suggested we simply get a taxi back if we couldn't make their time slots.

We hitched a ride in to town with a camp staffer who was taking a group kayaking, then, fortunately, met up with a couple in our same situation (not campers, just trying to enjoy Tamarindo, and equally shocked by the camp set-up/location/etc) to share a taxi back. It was a harrowing experience. The driver had a small compact car and he was terrified the entire drive of a popped tire or other damage. He was a Tamarindo-native and could not believe there was lodging in the middle of this wilderness area. It was pitch black and he was afraid of having to drive back alone after dropping us off. At one point, his car got stuck going up a hill and we all had to get out and push his car forward, afraid he'd speed off and leave us stranded without cell service in the middle of the night. He had the same challenge calling the camp staff but finally got in touch and was told to leave us at a middle school in the next town, as we'd missed the turn off (no signs) and they'd come pick us up in their jeep. We convinced him to stay with us until they arrived a few minutes later. The camp staff members pulled up laughing, with no sympathy for what was clearly a frightening, uncomfortable experience for their guests.

The 4 of us (including the Spanish couple) spoke with the director who greeted us when we arrived, explaining the tremendous challenges of staying there, trying to offer suggestions so that he can keep his camp afloat. He took minimal ownership and was extremely dismissive. We left the next morning, as soon as we could book a room in a new hotel.

This definitely seems like the brain-child of young surfers hoping to form a somewhat "off-the-grid" community out in the wilderness. It's a wonderful idea and it's clear they're working hard to build this place from scratch. They hand-built all of the tents, tables, platforms, etc and their craftsmanship is exceptional. The surf camp will likely have great reviews as you can benefit from a curated experience, community-vibe, and scheduled shuttles back and forth to the beach.

However, this is NOT a place for anyone else, outside the camp. It was so inconvenient and certainly our worst experience in Costa Rica - we couldn't have been more disappointed. For $55 a night, it's outrageously expensive for what you get.

We encouraged the director to stop accepting reservations on booking.com or elsewhere and to only host campers until they can better manage this business.

  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled as a couple
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13  Thank flyfreebirdie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 25, 2013

From the moment you arrive to the moment you leave, the Dreamsea team will make sure you are loved and have the time of your life. This surf camp is an excellent experience for anyone who wants to meet amazing people. The actual surfing experience is superb! Manu is the best surf instructor that I've ever had and actually learned to surf thanks to his incredible patience! I was worried that a surf camp would be too much of a party camp at first but I was pleasantly surprised to see how much the team took care of you even if you didn't want to go out one night. The surf camp is in the jungle but it is set up to be a beautiful retreat - almost dream-like. There are beautiful white horses, cows, monkeys, roosters, an adorable puppy and racoon duo. Everyone and everything live in harmony at the campsite and provide a lot of entertainment! The food is to die for. Rosie is great at what she does and the meals are both healthy and tasty. The team has actually excavated and created the camp with their bare hands. They know and love their work inside and out such that they have a lot of knowledge about living in the jungle and what it means to run a successful surf camp. I would gladly live their for an extended amount of time just because of how loved I felt. Everyone should go!

  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Setarehbateni
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 28, 2017 via mobile
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Stayed: August 2017, traveled solo
Thank lulacipriani
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DreamseaSurfCampCR, Manager at Dreamsea Surf Glamping Tents, responded to this reviewResponded October 4, 2017

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Reviewed February 27, 2016 via mobile
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Stayed: February 2016, traveled solo
Thank Itaykandel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DreamseaSurfCampCR, Manager at Dreamsea Surf Glamping Tents, responded to this reviewResponded March 4, 2016

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Reviewed February 26, 2016
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Room Tip: comodidad y buena ubicacion
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  • Stayed: February 2016, traveled with friends
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Thank Mario W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DreamseaSurfCampCR, Manager at Dreamsea Surf Glamping Tents, responded to this reviewResponded March 4, 2016

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Reviewed February 26, 2016 via mobile
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Stayed: February 2016, traveled with friends
Thank Tavo C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DreamseaSurfCampCR, Manager at Dreamsea Surf Glamping Tents, responded to this reviewResponded March 4, 2016

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Additional Information about Dreamsea Surf Glamping Tents

Address: Finca Los Jobos s/n, Tamarindo 50309, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Tamarindo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Shuttle Bus service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #14 of 83 Specialty Lodging in Tamarindo
Price Range: $73 - $111 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Dreamsea Surf Glamping Tents 2.5*
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Dreamsea Costa Rica is an eco-friendly, self-sustained, glamping & surf camp, strategically constructed on a 10,000 square meter patch of obscure land, centrally located in the magical jungles of Tamarindo, Costa Rica. We provide a unique opportunity for the adventurous traveler to experience the authentic Costa Rican way of life, through a seamless marriage of Surfing & Glamping. Through daily surfing, glamping, yoga, remote beach and waterfall excursions, paired with countless of other activities, our surf camp serves as a foundation to connect with yourself, other adventurous travelers, and Costa Rica's extraordinary offerings of nature and wildlife. Dreamsea is within 2-3 kilometers of proximity to four of the most exquisite beaches (Playa Tamarindo, Playa Langosta, Playa Avellanas, and Playa Grande) that the Guanacaste region beholds. Our motto is "Collect moments, not things". Once you arrive in camp, you have to check out of regular life and check into your inner tranquility. While you are at Dreamsea, be prepared to open your mind, body, and soul, ultimately forming memories that will last a lifetime. Dreamsea is doing, Dreamsea is feeling, Dreamsea is simply being you. ... more   less 
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