Playa Pinuela, South Puntarenas

Isolated & beautiful beach of Playa Pinuela
Isolated & beautiful beach of Playa Pinuela

Spanning about 1,300 meters long, the calming shoreline of Playa Pinuela is an ideal spot to enjoy the scenic wonders of Costa Rica's Pacific coast. This quiet and small beach near Uvita is rarely packed with tourists. Instead, it's a paradise getaway where travelers and locals alike bask in the warm sun and relax without interruption. This small community is home to fisherman, and there often the opportunity to buy a fresh catch from one at the end of the day - be sure to catch a local as he is collecting his nets! Playa Pinuela forms part of Marino Ballena National Park, so travelers will be conveniently located near incredible wildlife and diverse flora.

Beach at Playa Pinuela

Light grey sands meet the calming waters at Playa Pinuela. This small cove has moderate surf, but is more appropriate for swimming and snorkeling. With Isla Ballena in sight, beachgoers can settle in to a relaxing day beside a backdrop of lush green forests on this well-maintained beach. In the distance, it is also possible to see Three Sisters rocks, or Las Rocas Tres Hermanas. Depending on the time of travel, distant sounds and sights of whales breaking may be the norm.

Marino Ballena National Park

Playa Pinuela is just a few steps from Marino Ballena National Park, which was officially declared a marine park in 1989. Spanning 110 hectares of land and 5,375 hectares of sea, this park is one of the most famous spots to catch the majestic humpback whales during their migration. From mid-July to October and again in December to March, the warm tropical waters serve as mating and feeding grounds for humpback whales. This park aims to protect the marine ecosystem, as well as the whales that come through every year.


The calm waters of this region make snorkeling one of the most popular aquatic activities, but the stunning coral reef, which is the largest on the Pacific side of Central America, is the true gem. Visitors can also go horseback riding, scuba diving or hiking. Always dreamed of being able to sleep under the stars in paradise? Playa Pinuela and the surrounding areas allow camping in designated spots.

The quiet shorelines of Playa Pinuela are a beachgoer's dream. Golden sandy beaches, nearby mangrove ecosystems and rock and coral reefs of this region offer something for everyone from adventurists to leisurely travelers.

Costa Rica Eco-Adventure Tour
12 Days / 11 Nights or 10 Days / 9 Nights
Starting at $2,352 per person
Eco Experience: A Costa Rican Adventure
11 Days / 10 Nights
Starting at $3,874 per person

Where to Stay near Playa Pinuela

Featured Hotel
Tiki Villas Rainforest Lodge & Spa
Starting at $229 / night
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Oxygen Jungle Villas
Starting at $260 / night
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La Cusinga Lodge
Starting at $187 / night
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Hotel Punta Leona
Starting at $112 / night
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Selina Jacó
Starting at $62 / night per person
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Hostal La Posada
Starting at $25 / night
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Tambor Tropical Beach Resort
Starting at $215 / night
Featured Hotel
Hotel Poseidon
Starting at $96 / night

Things to Do near Playa Pinuela

Featured Activity
El Trapiche Tour
Starting at $33 / tour
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Adventure Flights Costa Rica
Starting at $150 / tour
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Efrain's Nature Tours
Starting at $55 / tour
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El Santuario Canopy Adventure Tour
Starting at $75 / tour
Featured Activity
Vista Los Sueños Rainforest Tours
Starting at $65 / tour