6 Best Costa Rica Beaches on the Pacific Side to Explore in 2022 + MAP

Costa Rica it is home to volcanoes, jungles and beautiful and diverse beaches. Tourists visit this land to soak up the sun, swim, surf and explore the relaxed beaches dotted along the coast.

The nature of your landscape begins to change as you move from place to place. Some of the best beaches are located on the Nicoya Peninsula, situated in the north.

check out: Best beaches in Nicaragua

6 best beaches in Costa Rica MAP

MAP of the best beaches in costa rica

This list of the six best beaches in Costa Rica should help visitors decide where to vacation.

1. Manuel António Beach

Manuel Antonio Beach - Costa Rica

The city of Manuel Antonio is home to the Manuel Antonio National Park. Numerous beautiful beaches surround this park.

Playa Espadilla, for example, is right in front of the town of Manuel Antonio. It is loved by locals for its clear waters and small waves.

It measures about two kilometers in length and is highly recommended for tourists who like to walk along the beach. It is also a great place to spend the day with the family.

Playitas Beach is another beach that a traveler might want to visit. It starts on a rocky headland, marking the end of Playa Espadilla beach.

2. Tamarindo Beach

Tamarindo Beach

Tamarindo Beach is the second most popular beach in Costa Rica. It is also home to many restaurants, rental apartments and tourist resorts.

It has many options of restaurants and bars designed to entertain locals and tourists.
Tamarindo has an exciting energy that can be fun and contagious, especially for those who like to explore new places.

Visitors to this beach love the idea of ​​fishing and surfing during the day and interacting with locals at night at beachside bars for happy hour drinks.

3. Nacascolo Beach

It is at the northern end of the Pacific coast, just a few kilometers from the Nicaraguan border. The dry climate in Playa Nacascolo is one of its attractive features.

The driest climate in the area is relative to the extreme south. Often the rainy season starts in May and ends in September. But even during this season, the rains last for more than a few hours.

Short showers mean visitors have enough time to soak up the sun they want. Over the years, the region has developed a reputation for its chic resorts.

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If you’re looking for something cheaper than a resort, visitors to Playa Nacascolo can always check out the other low-cost accommodation options on offer.

Adventure activities to engage in on a visit to this beach include:

  • A visit to public beaches
  • Tour of local wildlife sanctuaries
  • Participate in water sports

4. Costa Ballena (Whale Coast)

Whale Coast

Hermosa Beach and Uvita Beach are beloved coastal treasures bordering the “Whale’s Tail”. The “Whale Tail” is located in Punta Uvita, on the South Pacific coast, within the Marino Ballena National Park.

Aerial photographs of this park have shown that it has a whale-shaped sandbar. Coincidentally, it is the exact spot where humpbacks return to every year.
Humpbacks return from August to October and from December to April. Sea turtles also visit the park to nest between May and November.

Visitors to the area can rent scuba gear to help them explore its coral reef or choose to take a whale watching tour. Other viable options include renting standup paddle boards and kayaks.

5. Praia Hermosa, Jacó

Costa Rica is one of the few countries in the world that are divided by volcanoes. Many of its volcanoes are still active.

Playa Hermosa, Jaco translates to a “beautiful beach” and is the latest World Surf Reserve award winner. It is an award given to beaches to appreciate their efforts to protect the natural and marine environment.

The beach boasts volcanic sand that has a distinctive dark gray color. For those in the area who would like to dip their toes in the white sand, they should check out Playa Blanca.

It is located thirty minutes from Jaco and has a beautiful wooded cove.

6. Santa Teresa and Malpais Beach, Nicoya Peninsula

The Nicoya Peninsula, located south of Guanacaste, is home to several beach destinations popular with yogis and surfers. They include:

  • malpais
  • Santa Teresa
  • Carmen beach

The ones mentioned above are the small beaches that cater to locals and tourists visiting the cities of Santa Teresa and Malpais. They stand out on this list as visitors have to use beaten paths to get to them.

Tourists looking to spend time on a secluded beach with great surfing options should visit Santa Teresa beach. Malpais beach is the best for exploring rocky natural pools and playing in the white sand.

Common questions

  • What is the best beach in Costa Rica?

    Manuel Antonio Beach and Tamarindo Beach are the most visited beaches in Costa Rica. They are loved by locals and travelers all over the world.

  • What is the best part of Costa Rica?

    The best places to visit and stay in Costa Rica are Manuel Antonio National Park and Osa Peninsula. Both have great attractions and amazing things to do all year round.

  • Is the sea warm in Costa Rica?

    The sea water in Costa Rica is very warm, with temperatures above 20°C/68°F, making it ideal for swimming. Note that the water temperature in Costa Rica is on the decline.

All the reasons to visit Costa Rica

Costa Rica is the adventure capital of the sprawling Central American region. In addition to the six beaches mentioned above, the country has many activities to offer, including zip lining above the jungle canopy and hiking in its rainforests.

Its shores have proven popular with surfers across the world and boast turquoise waves and sunny sands. A visit to any of the beaches mentioned in this list will ensure that you enjoy your time in Costa Rica.

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