All it took was the popular surfing film, The Endless Summer 2, to feature Tamarindo’s awesome waves and most perfect weather, and surfers and tourists alike were waiting standby to get here. Now Tamarindo is a Central American hotspot with world-class resorts and top shelf service. None of that took away from natures’ exclusive surf destination.
It’s a boomtown! Tamarindo has a mix of mostly small hotels with a variety of price ranges to the larger players slowly moving in. There doesn’t appear to be much rhyme or reason, with some strip malls just totally out of place.
Breaks like Little Hawaii and Witches Rock are legends thanks to consistently huge waves and picture-perfect weather. There are waves for everyone here – longboarders and shortboarders – just ask the locals what are your best options.
Tamarindo is a long beach, but remember if your friends come to watch and swim, it can get a little rough. And, be careful where you swim – rocks are just offshore, barely below the surface. Of course, this is what makes it ideal for surfing! But if you’re bodysurfing, take note – you could get hurt.
Swimming near the mouth of the estuary is a little dangerous at times because of the strong currents. Try to do your swimming down at the southern end, near Punta Langosta.
Easy to get to, Tamarindo, Costa Rica is a top tourist destination as well, with the winter months (October through March) being the peak weeks. Don’t get discouraged. Here wave action is “totally awesome” from April through July.
The biggest waves you’ll ride can get up to 9 feet. Tamarindo is a great place to use as home base as you explore many of the breaks to the north and south. There are several breaks in town including Rivermouth and Langosta, but the real attraction is that you’re centrally located between world famous Playa Negra (south) and Witches Rock (north).
So logistically, Tamarindo offers the easiest place to explore the most surf in the shortest amount of time. And Tamarindo is big on nightlife.
Tamarindo is connected by paved road all the way from San Jose (4 1/2 hours) or by shuttle plane (no boards over 7 ft). If you come without a board, don’t fret. Local surf shops will rent everything – even snorkeling equipment, boogie boards, sea kayaks, and surfboards. They have half-day and hourly rates for most of these items.
We rate the surf destinations on best waves, ease of access, weather and enjoyment. Sure, there are more surf locations across the globe, but some are not easy to reach, or are always under the weather.