Guanacaste, Costa Rica is a province that’s in the northwestern part of the country on the cool waters of the Pacific Ocean. And for us what is so breathtaking here is the fact that the Guanacaste mountain range borders along the coast and provides a beautiful setting not found in many places on the globe.
Given that it’s on the Pacific, we know that we’re in for the most colorful tropical fish, crystal clear water, open-ocean so there’s great wave action – hey, we surf! – and well connected to the rest of the country so we can get here easily from the major cities. But there’s more.
One of the best kept secrets about Guanacaste, Costa Rica is the weather. You won’t find it in any other Costa Rican town or province. Here, there is little rain and a nice, dry heat starting in late October all the way through Easter. Millions flock here to experience the dry air, beautiful beaches and escape the winter in the United States and Canada. This dry season is one of the longest and makes for a great beach vacation! Just for the record, from May to October the weather in Guanacaste is similar to San Jose – rainy and a tad muggy.
Have we covered this before? Yes, back in 2008 we talked about the rapid tourist development here with largest number of beach hotels in all of Costa Rica. Then in 2009 we covered what we thought would make a great beach/surf vacation in Tamarindo, But our first visit was in 2006 when we deemed Tamarindo one of the best surf beaches on the planet…and you agreed!
Check out the major beaches:
The list goes on: Cuajiniquil, Ocotal, Pan de Azucar, Potrero, Flamingo, Brasilito, Conchal, Junquillal, Ostinal, Nosara and more.
OK, we talked about how you can hop on a plane and make this the best ever get-a-way from the cold of winter; remember, the heat here is during the winter in North America. But if you’re a beach lover that has to take in their share of natural beauty, too – i.e. you take more beach pictures WITHOUT people in them than most of your neighbors – well, Guanacaste is for you! With no less than seven national parks, a lot of locals come here – not for just the beach scene – but to take in all that God has to offer in the way of natural beauty. Like I said, it’s…breathtaking! Actually, reminded me a bit of Rio, where the mountains cascade down into the water.
So what about the beaches? There are huge, beautiful beaches here that line the coast for miles. The hotels are at the most exciting parts, but what you have to remember is that given the amount of people from all over the world, all walks of life, not everyone is going to be as conservative as you. This means that the beaches are “generally” clean and the government continues a serious program to keep them as clean as they can because they know first impressions are usually permanent. Tourism is now the number one source of income here – so you will see the effort.
How do you get here from where you are? Most people fly into the Liberia (LIR) airport in Guanacaste and the United States now has direct flights. Just know that the airport, because of the terrain, is about an hour from your hotel. Also try San Jose and then grab transportation on the nice highway up to Guanacaste. The trip is about 5 hours (4 if you drive like me) and is beautiful.