(Editor’s Note – This original post from December 2009 has been updated to reflect current Costa Rica vacation details.)
The beaches of Costa Rica hold a special place in the hearts and minds of beach lovers from around the world who have visited this tiny Central American country.
In fact, Costa Rica is famous for its many white sandy beaches and black sandy beaches.
Costa Rica beaches can be found all along the 600 mile stretch of Pacific coastline and the 200 mile stretch of Caribbean coastline. With a combination of warm tropical weather and warm tropical waters, Costa Rica beaches attract vacationers, snorkelers, scuba divers, and surfers from around the globe year round.
Costa Rica beaches on the Pacific west coast feature brilliant white sand and even some amazing black sand beaches, all framed by lush tropical rainforests. In travel brochures and other visitor guidelines, the west coast Costa Rica beaches are loosely divided into three sections.
Beaches in southern Costa Rica may be a bit more remote and undeveloped, while those in the central and northern parts of the country tend to be more popular and cater to tourist industry.
Regardless of location, travellers can lounge in the sun, enjoy their time in the brisk surf or take a leisurely walk to see if they can spot one of the dozens of native animal species among the trees. It’s not uncommon for vacationers to spot colorful toucans and other exotic birds plus monkeys, iguanas and even water walking lizards.
Even Christopher Columbus enjoyed the Caribbean coastline beaches of Costa Rica over five centuries ago.
Best Beaches in Costa Rica
Costa Rica is a relatively small country with coastlines that make up nearly two-thirds of its borders including the Caribbean and the Pacific oceans. From the 300+ beaches in Costa Rica some of the more famous Costa Rica beaches include:
- Jaco beach near Jaco Costa Rica
- Manuel Antonio Costa Rica beaches in Manuel Antonio National Park
- Tortuguero Costa Rica beaches in Tortuguero National Park
- The surfing beaches of Playa Dominical, just 30 miles south of Manuel Antonio National Park
- Playa Tamarindo beach, near the turtle nesting beaches of Costa Rica
- Corcovado beaches in Corcovado National Park on Costa Rica’s Osa peninsula
- Montezuma beach on Costa Rica’s Nicoya peninsula
Spectacular Lesser Known Costa Rica Beaches
Although lesser known the following Costa Rica beaches are also worth visiting:
- Playa Naranjo (Witches Rock)
- Playa Avellana
- Playa Santa Teresa
- Playa Negra
Playa Hermosa may be the best choice for prime surfing. Travellers may also want to seek accommodations near Playa Flamingo or Playa Grande. In the south, the beach at Ganodoca Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge is exceptional.
Costa Rica Beach Resorts
Vacationers can easily be pampered in one of the many Pacific and Caribbean coastal resorts of Costa Rica. In the tourist hotspots the nightlife is very active with bars and restaurants that cater to the needs of the many tourists who come to enjoy a drink or a meal.
One of the highlights that many visitors recall from their Costa Rica beach experience is buying a cold fruit drink or ice cream from a vendor who makes his way along the beach.
Those who plan to visit one of the astonishing Costa Rican beaches will find that many use the Spanish name “playa.” Nearly every one of these idyllic spots offers plenty of privacy and opportunity for relaxation.
Caravan Costa Rica Vacations – Featuring Top Costa Rica Beaches
Beaches are always a drawing feature for Costa Rica eco travel.
Various Costa Rica beaches including Guanacaste beach resort, Manuel Antonio beaches, and Leatherback Turtles National Park, are currently featured in Caravan Tours’ Costa Rica Paradise travel packages.
Read more about what fellow travellers have to say about these 9-day tours on our Costa Rica reviews page or call 1-800-CARAVAN (227-2826) to reserve your spot today.