Surf In Costa Rica

Written by Helen Glenn Court
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To surf in Costa Rica is to enjoy a season that lasts all year on the Pacific and part of the year on the Caribbean. Between them, the Pacific and the Caribbean give Costa Rica its 785 miles of coastline. On the east are the black sand beaches, on the west the white. Both produce first-rate surfing waves, whether point breaks or beach breaks or reef breaks.

A vacation in the jewel of Central America, of course, means far more than leashing your leg to the surf board and riding the waves. To surf in Costa Rica means that you've settled on one of the countless resorts along the pristine beaches and have chosen one of the many activities Costa Rica offers. You're not ruling out the amazing biodiversity in the volcanic rain forests of central Costa Rica. You might be scuba diving amidst dolphins and orcas and stingrays, or snorkeling over cup coral at night.

You're certainly not excluding the many beachfront restaurants willing to prepare the marlin you caught while deepwater fishing. It could well be that you're grabbing time to surf in Costa Rica as best as you can. The rest of the time you might well be on bird watching expeditions, whether into mangrove forests or rain forests further inland amidst Costa Rica's rough volcanic mountains.

Where to Surf in Costa Rica

Among the country's many surf spots, two of particular note are the Playa Naranjo featured in the film Endless Summer II and the rivermouth point break at Potrero Grande. The string of "official" beaches along the northwestern Pacific coast number 23, from Nacasolo in the north to Isla Tortuga at the bottom of the Peninsula de Nicoya. More surf spots continue to the south as far as Matapolo on the Peninsula de Osa and Manzanillo in the Golfe Dulce, near the Panama border.

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