Top 5 beaches in Costa Rica

Tamarindo, photo by reservasdecoche.com on Flickr

Costa Rica’s cloud forests, volcanoes, hot springs and nature reserves are all the hype among travelers to South America, but there’s another very big card up Costa Rica’s sleeve: its beaches. There are more beaches in Costa Rica than one can count, after all the coastline of the country is almost 1300 kilometers long. With this much sand and sea it’s a daunting task to decide exactly where you want to spend your sunkissed holiday. It’s completely normal if you want to spend you time in Costa Rica lounging in the sun, enjoying the warm sea, do some water sports or sip fruit juices in the shade, but if you want to stick to the coast, you should know which are the top 5 beaches in Costa Rica.

Playa Tamarindo

Tamarindo used to be a quiet hippie paradise in the past, with some surfers and free spirits being its only guests, but at the present Tamarindo is one of the most well developed beach resorts in Costa Rica. Playa Tamarindo is blissfully noisy, crowded and immensely fun, with accommodation to suit every budget, and lots of restaurants and eateries where you can have an authentic Costa Rica dining experience. Plus, the wide and long beach has sections that are perfect for swimmers, and great surfing spots too.

Playa Nacascolo, Guanacaste

Playa Samara, photo by Sarah and Iain on Flickr

Many travelers who work with smaller budgets might tend to avoid Playa Nacascolo just because it is next to the prestigious and notoriously expensive Four Seasons Resort. However, the beach is public property and open to everyone, and one of those rare Costa Rican beaches with strikingly white and soft sand. Although narrow, this beach is just too beautiful to miss.

Tortuguero beaches, Tortuguero National Park

The Caribbean coast of Costa Rica is a refuge for wildlife and wildlife watchers alike, and if said wildlife watchers don’t mind to lounge on the beach a bit between two sessions of wildlife watching, the beaches of Tortuguero couldn’t be more perfect. The national park is a haven for sea turtles who come to the beaches to lay their eggs. Obviously, these beaches are not overrun with tourists, and those who do come keep a respectful distance most of the time, but the natural beauty of these pristine beaches in unforgettable.

Samara Beach, Nicoya Peninsula

Tortuguero beach, photo by Eric Chan on Flickr

Samara Beach is as beautiful as it is safe, with a long strip of white and soft sand where you can truly relax and let go of your worries. The small town of Samara right near the beach has the perfect balance between touristy-ness and authenticity so that you get all the facilities you could desire and still be able to say that you’ve experienced Costa Rican culture.

Playa Conchal, Guanacaste

Conchal Beach in the northern Pacific parts of Costa Rica is close to such hugely popular beaches like Tamarindo, and right next to the luxurious Westlin resort, but it still one of the most pristine and attractive beaches in Costa Rica, which is no meager accomplishment. The calm blue ocean and the sand interspersed with bits of shell and coral make this beach one of the foremost top 5 beaches in Costa Rica.

 

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