Costa Rica Beaches

Mal Pais Beach Driftwood
Mal Pais Beach Driftwood

As a country with dual coastlines, a tropical climate and a firm commitment to the continued preservation of its natural wonders, Costa Rica beaches are among the finest and most popular stretches of sand in the world.

Whether travelers are hoping to hit the waves on a surfing excursion, trek across rocky coasts or simply lay out in the sun, the Central American paradise's 1,800 km (1,100 miles) of coastline has something for everyone.

See the Beaches of the Pacific

Despite the Caribbean's reputation for fun in the sun, the Pacific coast of Costa Rica is much more popular with travelers – particularly if those travelers are surfers.

Possibly the most popular surf spots in the country are Playa Naranjo and Witches Rock in Santa Rosa National Park, though many surfers also sing the praises of the beaches found on the Nicoya Peninsula.

Among the many notable beaches to hang ten are Playa Grande, Playa Avellana, Playa Negra and Playa Santa Teresa, check out more our Surfer's Guide for more.

Nature lovers can find plenty of natural trails and beautiful wildlife on their way to the beaches of South Puntarenas, particularly in Corcovado National Park and the Osa Peninsula.

The nearby beaches of Drake Bay are also popular for sport fishing, as several large and unique creatures can be found in the warm waters of the Pacific.

Enjoy the Caribbean Beaches

Though perhaps less popular than its Pacific counterpart, Costa Rica's Caribbean coast offers up plenty of beautiful beaches, or 'playas' as they're known to the native Ticos, just waiting to be explored.

Adventurous travelers who like to hike to their favorite beach spots will find some amazing shorelines at Tortuguero National Park, and the more fortunate vacationer may even spot some of the amazing sea turtles that call the area home.

For a more touristy area, travelers can venture to Puerto Viejo, a small town with big beaches, or the larger city of Limon, which boasts one of the most active sea-faring industries in the region. These areas tend to have the laid-back vibe typically associated with the Caribbean, and are well worth the adventure.

The Southern Caribbean coast is also home to the Gandoca Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge, which hosts one of the country's most beautiful stretches of sand.

Stand out shorelines

Of course, these are only some of the amazing beaches to be found in Costa Rica, and travelers interested in spending some time on the sand can also check out stunning local beaches like Playa Carrillo, Playa Ballena, Playa Conchal, Playa Potrero and more.

Guanacaste Escape Adventure Tour
7 Days / 6 Nights
Starting at $779 per person
Around Beautiful Costa Rica Tour
10 Days / 9 Nights
Starting at $960 per person
There is a wide variety of beaches to choose from in Costa Rica, from calm swimming beaches to amazing surfing beaches, Costa Rica has it all.