SURFING in Guanacaste

Surfing In Guanacaste

A Brief Guide to Guanacaste Surf Spots and Surf Schools

Welcome to Guanacaste’s Surf Paradise! The coastline from Sámara to Playa Flamingo is a haven for surf enthusiasts, many considering it a surf paradise with warm water and consistent conditions producing powerful waves. Around the point on the sheltered side, can always be found waves suitable for beginners and young children. Whether you’re just starting out or are an experienced surfer seeking thrilling waves, this stretch offers some of the best surf spots in Costa Rica. Don’t forget the legendary Witch’s Rock to the north, a world-renowned destination for advanced surfers, and the world-famous Playa Negra, which featured in the cult surf movie “Endless Summer II“, directed by Bruce Brown in 1994, and is a sequel to his 1966 film The Endless Summer.

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Below is an extremely brief guide to surfing in this region of Costa Rica.  There are many spots unmentioned, and of course, there are spots known only to local surfers. You will find a friendly vibe in the line-up, no heavy ‘locals only’ energy here! For more details on other surf spots I recommend contacting one of the surf schools or doing your own research.

Tamarindo, the largest own in the province attracts many surfing tourists coming to give it a go.  The more dedicated surfer has researched and will be traveling to one of the other locations.

Best Spots for Beginners

  1. Sámara Beach
    • Ideal for beginners, Sámara Beach has gentle waves in a relaxed, welcoming atmosphere.
  2. Playa Grande
    • Near Tamarindo, Playa Grande is great for beginners, offering consistent, manageable waves.
  3. Playa Avellanas
    • This beach is known for softer waves and a sandy bottom, making it another excellent choice for novice surfers, but can also produce punchy hollow waves.

Top Spots for Advanced Surfers

  1. Playa Negra
    • Famous for its powerful right-hand breaks, Playa Negra is a must-visit for experienced surfers.
  2. Playa Marbella
    • Known for its fast and powerful waves, Playa Marbella offers a challenging experience for skilled surfers. There are many spots near here on this part of the coast that directly faces the direction of the prevailing swells coming up from the South Pacific
  3. Witch’s Rock
    • North of our region, Witch’s Rock is celebrated for its consistent breaks and hollow tubes.

Surf Schools in the Region

  1. Flamingo Surf Club
    • Location: Playa Flamingo
    • Website:
    • Contact: +506 5678 9012
    • Description: Offers expert coaching for surfers on the ‘gentle’ waves at Playa Flamingo.
  2. Tamarindo Wave Riders
    • Location: Playa Grande, Tamarindo
    • Website:
    • Contact: +506 2345 6789
    • Description: Offers classes for all levels, with advanced coaching available.
  3. Tamarindo Surf Academy
    • Location: Tamarindo Beach
    • Website:
    • Description: Tamarindo Surf Academy is celebrated for its personalized teaching approach, catering to the unique needs of each surfer, whether beginner or advanced.
  4. Iguana Surf
    • Location: Tamarindo Beach
    • Website:
    • Description: Iguana Surf, operating since 1989, is Tamarindo’s original surf shop, providing an authentic and experienced approach to surf lessons and equipment.
  5. Pacific Surf School
    • Location: Tamarindo Beach
    • Website:
    • Description: As Tamarindo’s premier surf school, Pacific Surf School offers fun and approachable surf lessons, with a track record of excellence.
  6. Avellanas Surf Academy
    • Location: Playa Avellanas
    • Website:
    • Contact: +506 3456 7890
    • Description: Friendly instructors and a focus on safety make this a great learning spot.
  7. Negra Wave Masters
    • Location: Playa Negra
    • Website:
    • Contact: +506 4567 8901
    • Description: Specializing in advanced techniques for tackling challenging waves.
  8. Marbella Surf Instruction
    • Location: Playa Marbella
    • Website:
    • Contact: +506 5678 9012
    • Description: Expert coaching for advanced surfers, focusing on the dynamic waves of Playa Marbella.
  9. Nosara Surf Academy
    • Location: Nosara
    • Website:
    • Contact: +506 6789 0123
    • Description: Offers a range of surfing lessons and camps, catering to all skill levels, in the serene Nosara area.
  10. Sámara Surf School
    • Location: Sámara Beach
    • Website:
    • Contact: +506 1234 5678
    • Description: Beginner-friendly with experienced instructors, perfect for those new to surfing.


Embrace the Waves

From serene beaches perfect for beginners to challenging breaks for the pros, Guanacaste’s coastline offers a diverse surfing experience. Coupled with top-notch surf schools, this region is a prime destination for anyone looking to embrace the surf culture of Costa Rica.

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