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The Best Beach In Costa Rica: What To Know About The Nicoya Peninsula Beaches

The Best Beach In Costa Rica: What To Know About The Nicoya Peninsula Beaches

NOTE: The content on this page was last updated on July 15th, 2017.

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ABOUT THE NICOYA PENINSULA BEACHES

Choosing a coastal beach area (such as one of Costa Rica’s Nicoya Peninsula beaches) to visit during your Costa Rica trip can be a stressful, time consuming, and pull-your-hair-out frustrating part of vacation planning. As mentioned in our related blog posts The Best Beach In Costa Rica: What To Know About The Northern Pacific Guanacaste Beaches and The Best Beach In Costa Rica: What To Know About The Central Pacific Beaches, with a total of 1228km of coastline to offer it is no wonder Costa Rica is known for its countless beach destinations. In those posts we focused on seven of Costa Rica’s Northern Pacific beaches in the Guanacaste province stretching from the Papagayo Gulf down to the ever-popular Tamarindo beach, as well as an additional six beaches covering the Central Pacific stretch of coast between Jaco and Dominical. Below, we highlight Costa Rica’s Nicoya Peninsula beaches–an additional nine beaches (some popular and others remote): Samara, Cangrejal, Carrillo, Garza, Guiones (Nosara), Buena Vista, Ostional, Montezuma, and Tambor–each of which are accessible to travellers flying into and/or out of either of the country’s two international airports.

So what is it exactly that makes one beach stand out from the next? After all, we are just talking about sand and water–how different can one stretch of coast be from the next? Actually, quite different. Not only can the texture and colour of sand change from mile to mile, but so too can a number of other beach factors that could impact a visitor’s overall experience. For this reason, we aim to identify some of the advantages and disadvantages of each Costa Rica beach area according to a number of different factors (including the beach’s degree of popularity with tourists, its proximity to towns offering dining, shopping, and tour options, and its distance from the nearest airport, to name a few) in order to help travellers compare the various options and decide on a beach that is perfect for them.

Nicoya Peninsula beaches
Playa Samara

NICOYA PENINSULA BEACHES: PLAYA SAMARA

Location in proximity to other Nicoya Peninsula beaches: located west of Playa Carrillo and east of Playa Cangrejal

Distance from San Jose: 235km (approximately 4 hours)
Closest Town: Samara (large town)
Beach Status: public beach
Type of Sand: light brown sand, smooth beach

Selling points

  1. For those travellers looking to visit a popular beach town, Playa Samara is a great choice. This town is one of the most vibrant and populated areas on the Nicoya Peninsula, especially when compared to its neighbouring beaches (Carrillo, Cangrejal, Buena Vista, and Garza). Travellers who choose to stay at accommodations in town have access to a variety of dining and shopping options–the majority of which are situated within walking distance to the beach.
  2. Playa Samara is a long beach. Although it is popular and attracts quite a few visitors, its length allows visitors to spread out down the coast providing beach-goers with the feeling that the area is less busy than it actually is.
  3. Travellers looking to participate in a number of tours/activities during their time at the beach will find a variety in Samara. Most of the tour operators in this town include round-trip transportation to/from Samara accommodations. For this reason, Samara is a good choice for those individuals who will not have a rental vehicle and who would prefer to stay in an area where getting to/from tour/activity, dining, and shopping options is possible via foot or a short taxi ride.
  4. Playa Samara offers a beautiful beach and the next best thing to white sand–a light brown, smooth, and sandy beach. This beach provides a shallow area by the coast to wade in and waves to play in.
  5. The Playa Samara community promotes healthy living through its abundance of health stores, markets, and organic offerings. If naturopathy and/or living a clean lifestyle interests you, you’ll likely want to check out some of Playa Samara’s specialty shops.
  6. For all that the town of Samara offers, the area maintains a relaxed and low-key vibe; fortunately, the Playa Samara region is not overly loud or crowded, despite being one of Costa Rica’s up and coming beach destinations that grows in popularity each year.
  7. Nearby Playa Carrillo is an excellent place to take in a beautiful sunset!

Disadvantages

  1. Playa Samara can be a busy beach. Although not as busy as a few other beaches located along Costa Rica’s Northern Pacific and Central Pacific coasts, given that most of the tours that service the entire coastal region between Playa Ostional and Playa Carrillo run to and from the town of Samara, the beach attracts travellers to the region on a continued basis (including those who choose to stay in the town of Samara directly, as well as those who choose to stay in neighbouring areas but opt to visit Playa Samara during the day). For this reason, Playa Samara can get quite busy during the high/summer season when the country experiences a higher volume of tourism traffic.
  2. Given its popularity, Samara is more “the place to be” than “the place to go to get away from it all”. The area draws a mixed crowd–a young, single’s population drawn to the area for the beach, together with family travellers impressed by the variety of tours and activities available (especially activities that children can participate in). For those travellers who would prefer a less populated town area and/or beach, unfortunately Samara does not support this type of setting; ventures outside of town to more secluded beach areas would be required to accommodate this preference.

Recommendations

  1. The Samara region is known for offering a lot, not a little. If easy access to accommodation, tour/activity, dining, and shopping options is what you are looking for, than the Samara area would be the prime Nicoya Peninsula coastal destination for you. Alternatively, travellers looking to stay at a remote location where they can truly get away from it all (avoiding other travellers, local businesses, and tourism overall) would likely be put off by everything that the Samara region has going on. Although Samara offers a lot without forcing it in travellers’ faces (the presence of tourism in the area is apparent but not annoying), the fact of the matter is, travellers who would rather stay within the boundaries of their chosen accommodation with little interest in venturing out to explore its surroundings would not benefit from the plethora of detail that is available to be experienced in the Samara region. In this case, a different coastal area would be recommended.

Extra notes

  1. Recommended day trips from Playa Samara include visits to Playa Carrillo, Playa Cangrejal, Playa Garza, and Playa Guiones (Nosara).
Learn more about Playa Samara by reading our related blog post:

What To Know About Playa Samara Costa Rica (Samara Beach)

Nicoya Peninsula beaches
Playa Cangrejal

NICOYA PENINSULA BEACHES: PLAYA CANGREJAL

Location in proximity to other Nicoya Peninsula beaches: located west of Playa Samara and east of Playa Buena Vista

Distance from San Jose: 235km (approximately 4 hours)
Closest Town: Samara (large town)
Beach Status: public beach
Type of Sand: light brown sand, smooth beach

Selling points

  1. Ideal for those travellers who are looking for a quiet beach to relax at without the distraction of other visitors.
  2. Given that Playa Cangrejal is located a hop, skip, and throw away from Playa Samara (the former is situated about a five-minute drive north of the latter), the majority of the selling points described for Playa Samara above apply to Playa Cangrejal as well. Some of these selling points include access to a vibrant beach community with a low-key vibe, specialty stores, and tours/activities that include transportation to/from area hotels.
  3. Unlike Playa Samara, Playa Cangrejal is far less visited. Although it is close in proximity to the town of Samara, it feels light-years away, as Playa Cangrejal is a sliver of Costa Rica coastline that usually provides privacy and solace. Easily accessible via a short drive, taxi ride, or bike ride by either those who opt to stay in hotels located in the town of Samara directly or in accommodations situated on the outskirts of town, Playa Cangrejal is our go-to spot for taking a quick dip in the Pacific Ocean whenever we are in the region.
  4. Playa Cangrejal is one of only a few beaches situated along Costa Rica’s Pacific coast that is lined with palm trees–trees typically only seen on the Caribbean side of the country. This makes Playa Cngrejal the perfect spot to hang up a hammock and rest the day away!

Disadvantages

  1. Given Playa Cangrejal’s separation from the town of Samara, there are no restaurants, bathrooms, or shops accessible from the beach. A quick drive, taxi ride, or bike ride into the town of Samara would be required in order to access any of these amenities.

Recommendations

  1. A visit to Playa Cangrejal is recommended to travellers who plan to stay in Samara but who wish to relax at a beach other than the area’s principal beach: Playa Samara. Fortunately, a number of hotels exist outside of Playa Samara’s town center, including those located northwest of town, which are close in proximity to Playa Cangrejal. Travellers who opt to stay at those hotels may access Playa Cangrejal on foot, however all visitors to the Samara region may experience Playa Cangrejal via a quick drive, taxi ride, or bike ride from town.

Extra notes

  1. Recommended day trips from Playa Cangrejal include visits to Playa Samara, Playa Carrlllo and Playa Guiones (Nosara).
Nicoya Peninsula beaches
Playa Carrillo

NICOYA PENINSULA BEACHES: PLAYA CARRILLO

Location in proximity to other Nicoya Peninsula beaches: located northwest of the southern tip of the peninsula and east of Playa Samara

Distance from San Jose: 240km (approximately 4 hours and 15 minutes)
Closest Town: Samara (large town)
Beach Status: public beach
Type of Sand: light brown sand, smooth beach

Selling points

  1. Playa Carrillo has (in our opinion!) one of Costa Rica’s most beautiful beaches. Not only does the beach offer some of the lightest sand you can find in the country, but its more popular neighbour (Playa Samara) helps mask Playa Carrillo as a less-visited gem.
  2. Playa Carrillo is a long beach. Although it is moderately popular and attracts visitors at certain times of the year, its length allows visitors to spread out down the coast providing beach-goers with the feeling that the area is less busy than it actually is.
  3. With a coast that seems to never end, the same could be said about parking opportunities. Travellers visiting Playa Carrillo for the day with their own rental vehicles can park along the side of a long road that runs parallel to the beach.
  4. Playa Carrillo is one of only a few beaches situated along Costa Rica’s Pacific coast that is lined with palm trees–trees typically only seen on the Caribbean side of the country. This makes Playa Carrillo the perfect spot to hang up a hammock and rest the day away!

Disadvantages

  1. The Playa Carrillo area does not offer travellers a wide variety of tour options (when compared to the countless activity possibilities offered in nearby Samara). For this reason, it is not the best beach location for those travellers who wish to participate in many tours and activities during their time at the beach.
  2. A visit to Playa Carrillo is recommended to those travellers with a rental vehicle and/or those travellers who plan to use taxi services to get to/from their accommodation and the beach, or else to/from their accommodation and Samara in order to participate in the majority of tours that the area offers (transportation to/from accommodations in Playa Carrillo is not regularly included with tours run from the Samara area).
  3. Given Playa Carrillo’s separation from the town of Samara, there are no restaurants, bathrooms, or shops accessible from the beach. A quick drive, taxi ride, or bike ride into the town of Samara would be required in order to access any of these amenities.

Recommendations

  1. A visit to Playa Carrillo is recommended to travellers who plan to stay in Samara but who wish to relax at a beach other than the area’s principal beach: Playa Samara. Fortunately, a number of hotels exist outside of Playa Samara’s town center, including those located southeast of town, which are close in proximity to Playa Carrillo. Travellers who opt to stay at those hotels (as well as travellers who wish to make a day trip to/from Samara) may access Playa Carrillo via a quick drive or taxi ride from town.

Extra notes

  1. Recommended day trips from Playa Carrillo include visits to Playa Samara and Playa Guiones (Nosara).
Nicoya Peninsula beaches
Playa Garza

NICOYA PENINSULA BEACHES: PLAYA GARZA

Location in proximity to other Nicoya Peninsula beaches: located west of Playa Buena Vista and south of Playa Guiones (Nosara)

Distance from San Jose: 245km (approximately 4 hours and 30 minutes)
Closest Town: Samara (large town), Nosara (small town)
Beach Status: public beach
Type of Sand: light brown sand, smooth beach

Selling points

  1. For travellers looking for remoteness (i.e., a beach area offering few dining and tour options) they can find it in Playa Garza. Everything else a visitor might need can be found in nearby Playa Samara (the largest town in the area).
  2. Playa Garza is ideal for those travellers who are looking for a quiet beach to relax at without the distraction of other visitors.
  3. Playa Garza offers a beautiful and quiet beach boasting light brown sand, shaded areas, hardly any debris or garbage, and a child’s playground to boot!

Disadvantages

  1. The Playa Garza area is simply a stretch of Nicoya Peninsula coastline (it is a “blink and you’ll miss it” type of place)–it does not offer a town community, accommodation options, or a plethora of tour/activity offerings.

Recommendations

  1. A visit to Playa Garza is perfectly planned as a day trip (not an overnight visit); it is recommended to travellers with a rental vehicle and/or travellers who plan to use taxi services to get to/from their accommodation and this beach. It is also recommended that travellers have a rental vehicle or else plan to use taxi services to get themselves to/from Playa Samara in order to access dining and shopping options, as well as to participate in the majority of tours that the area offers.

Extra notes

  1. Recommended day trips from Playa Garza include visits to Playa Samara, Playa Carrlllo and Playa Guiones (Nosara).
Nicoya Peninsula beaches
Playa Guiones (Nosara)

NICOYA PENINSULA BEACHES: PLAYA GUIONES (NOSARA)

Location in proximity to other Nicoya Peninsula beaches: located north of Playa Garza and south of Playa Ostional

Distance from San Jose: 250km (approximately 4 hours and 45 minutes)
Closest Town: Nosara (small town), Samara (large town)
Beach Status: public beach
Type of Sand: light brown sand, smooth beach

Selling points

  1. More than anything else, Playa Guiones (Nosara) is a small surf and yoga town, boasting some of the best surf breaks in the entire country. For anyone looking to surf or practice yoga on a budget and/or with an interest in visiting a small surf/yoga community (as opposed to Costa Rica’s larger surf towns offering more developed and higher quality sites) Playa Guiones (Nosara) is the correct place for you.
  2. The Playa Guiones (Nosara) area is home to primarily economy and standard accommodations that cater to budget-minded travellers. Younger visitors who intend to spend the day at the beach or in the water (not at a hotel) are often pleased by the plethora of inexpensive lodging options.
  3. As one of Costa Rica’s most relaxed yet social beach towns, the vibe at Playa Nosara is truly “pura vida”; if hanging out at the beach with friends, strolling through town in your bathing suit, and giving the surf a go is what you long for, these opportunities present themselves in Nosara.

Disadvantages

  1. Given its small and tight-knit coastal community, Playa Guiones (Nosara) tends to attract generation Y and Z travellers looking for sun, sand, and surf. For this reason, although there are many activities that children and older adults can participate in, families tend to prefer the more family-friendly feel of nearby Playa Samara to the young crowd that gathers in Playa Guiones (Nosara).
  2. Since Playa Guiones (Nosara) tends to attract younger travellers, the town offers more economy and standard accommodation options than superior and resort-quality stays. For honeymooners and/or travellers looking for higher-class travel experiences, where Playa Guiones (Nosara) succeeds in penny-pinching, it fails in the romance and luxury departments.
  3. Like Playa Samara, Playa Guiones (Nosara) can be a busy beach. Given that the surf community draws in surfers from all over the world, travellers flock to the region on a continued basis. For this reason, Playa Guiones (Nosara) can get quite busy during the high/summer season when the country experiences a higher volume of tourism traffic. Fortunately, Nosara’s small town size and moderately remote location along the coast keep it less busy than Samara year round.
  4. While the Playa Guiones (Nosara) area does offer some tour/activity options, it offers less than what travellers can find in nearby Samara. For this reason, it is not the best beach location for those travellers who wish to participate in many tours and activities during their time at the beach (transportation to/from Nosara is not regularly included with tours run from the Samara area).

Recommendations

  1. If a small-town beach feel complete with a handful of surf and yoga opportunities is what you are looking for than Playa Guiones (Nosara) would be one of two prime Nicoya Peninsula beach locations for you (you may also want to consider Playa Montezuma). Otherwise, if a more organized and developed beach area interests you (i.e., one that offers more things to do, more things to see, and schedules you can rely on), a different coastal area would be the smarter choice.
  2. Since some hotel options are located near the beach, it is not required that all visitors have a rental vehicle. However, since the Playa Guiones (Nosara) area offers some, but not many, dining, shopping, and tour options, it is often recommended that travellers staying in the Playa Guiones (Nosara) area make plans to visit nearby Playa Samara in order to access additional amenities. In this case, having a rental vehicle is advantageous as travellers can drive themselves to/from Playa Guiones (Nosara) and nearby beach towns, however travellers without a rental vehicle can simply plan to use taxi services to get to/from where they wish to go.

Extra notes

  1. Recommended day trips from Playa Guiones (Nosara) include visits to Playa Ostional, Playa Garza, Playa Samara, and Playa Carrlllo.
Nicoya Peninsula beaches
Playa Buena Vista

NICOYA PENINSULA BEACHES: PLAYA BUENA VISTA

Location in proximity to other Nicoya Peninsula beaches: located west of Playa Cangrejal and east of Playa Garza

Distance from San Jose: 240km (approximately 4 hours and 15 minutes)
Closest Town: Samara (large town)
Beach Status: public beach
Type of Sand: brown sand, moderately smooth beach (debris from the estuary present)

Selling points

  1. Given that Playa Buena Vista is located a hop, skip, and throw away from Playa Samara (the former is situated about a ten-minute drive north of the latter), the majority of the selling points described for Playa Samara above apply to Playa Buena Vista as well. Some of these selling points include access to a vibrant beach community with a low-key vibe, specialty stores, and tours/activities that include transportation to/from area hotels.
  2. Unlike Playa Samara, Playa Buena Vista is far less visited. Although it is close in proximity to the town of Samara, it feels light-years away, as Playa Buena Vista is a sliver of Costa Rica coastline that usually provides privacy and solace. Easily accessible via a short drive, taxi, or bike ride to either those who opt to stay in hotels located in the town of Samara directly or those who opt to stay in accommodations situated on the outskirts of town, Playa Buena Vista is an unadvertised hot spot most often visited by locals.

Disadvantages

  1. Travellers who opt to visit Playa Buena Vista should do so at their own risk as there are crocodiles in the region. Given the coast’s design, the crossing of an estuary is required in order to access the strip of beach that exists between the estuary and the ocean. Upon arrival at Playa Buena Vista there are warning signs about crocodiles in the estuary, and we recommend opting not to visit the beach for this reason. In our opinion, spending time at Playa Buena Vista is simply not work the risk of crossing the estuary (or worse, getting stranded on the beach between the estuary and the ocean if a crocodile appears in the estuary partway through your visit).

Recommendations

  1. As noted above, we maintain that spending time at Playa Buena Vista is simply not worth the risk of crossing the estuary; visiting any other coastal area described on this page would be the smarter choice.

Extra notes

  1. Recommended day trips from Playa Buena Vista include visits to Playa Samara, Playa Cangrejal, Playa Garza, and Carrillo.
Nicoya Peninsula beaches
Playa Ostional

NICOYA PENINSULA BEACHES: PLAYA OSTIONAL

Location in proximity to other Nicoya Peninsula beaches: located north of Playa Guiones (Nosara) and south of Playa Tamarindo

Distance from San Jose: 265km (approximately 5 hours)
Closest Town: Nosara (small town), Samara (large town)
Beach Status: public beach
Type of Sand: brown-to-black sand (depending on the stretch of beach), rough beach

Selling points

  1. Playa Ostional’s greatest selling point is its connection to turtle arribadas (“arrivals”) where turtles approach the beach to lay their eggs in the sand. For this reason, the Playa Ostional’s appeal is not the beach itself, rather the turtles.

Disadvantages

  1. The Playa Ostional area is simply a stretch of Nicoya Peninsula coastline–it does not offer a town community, accommodation options, or a plethora of tour/activity offerings (with the exception of turtle nesting tours, which is the main attraction of the area during particular times of the year).
  2. Playa Ostional is not the most attractive beach along the coast. Although not a dirty beach, the rocks and debris spread out across the area prevent it from offering a smooth groundwork that travellers could walk along barefoot. For this reason (and the fact that plenty of light sand and smooth beaches exist merely an hour up the coast), Playa Ostional’s rugged beach fails to impress.

Recommendations

  1. Unless something specific offered in the Playa Ostional region area catches your eye (such as a turtle nesting tour), an overnight stay (or a longer period of time spent in the area) would be better spent elsewhere; the quality of travel experience that can be obtained via visits to other coastal areas is worth looking into.
  2. Although the Playa Ostional region draws in travellers for the purpose of seeing turtles, skip the turtle nesting tour. Ricky and I refuse to participate in one, and not because we have no interest in learning about turtles, but rather because we love turtles enough to leave them alone while they undergo their nesting habits. Tourism in the Playa Ostional region (and in other turtle nesting areas of the country) has a negative impact on arribadas, and in our opinion, no “selfie” photo with sea turtles in the background is worth endangering the species. We hope you feel the same!

Extra notes

  1. A recommended day trip from Playa Ostional includes a visit to Playa Guiones (Nosara).
Nicoya Peninsula beaches
Playa Montezuma

NICOYA PENINSULA BEACHES: PLAYA MONTEZUMA

Location in proximity to other Nicoya Peninsula beaches: located south of Playa Tambor and north of the southern tip of the peninsula

Distance from San Jose: 175km (approximately 5 hours, including time for the ferry crossing but excluding time spent waiting for the ferry to depart, as this amount of time would be determined by the time of arrival at the port and the ferry schedule)
Closest Town: Montezuma (small town), Cobano (large town)
Beach Status: public beach
Type of Sand: light brown sand, moderately smooth beach disrupted by rocks and occasional debris

Selling points

  1. More than anything else, Playa Montezuma is a small surf and yoga town. For anyone looking to surf or practice yoga on a budget and/or with an interest in visiting a small surf/yoga community (as opposed to Costa Rica’s larger surf towns offering more developed and higher quality sites) Playa Montezuma is the correct place for you.
  2. The Playa Montezuma area is home to both economy accommodations and higher-quality eco-resorts (typically marketed as “retreats”). Since the area’s surf and yoga culture draw in a wide variety of travellers, younger visitors are often pleased by the availability of inexpensive lodging, just as couples/honeymooners and retreat-goers are satisfied by the region’s touch of luxury.
  3. The Playa Montezuma community promotes healthy living through its abundance of health stores, markets, and organic offerings. If naturopathy and/or living a clean lifestyle interests you, you’ll likely want to check out some of Playa Montezuma’s specialty shops.
  4. As one of Costa Rica’s most relaxed beach towns, the vibe at Playa Montezuma is truly “pura vida”; if laziness is what you long for, you’ll find it in Montezuma.

Disadvantages

  1. The Playa Montezuma area does not offer travellers a wide variety of tour options (when compared to the countless activity possibilities offered in Samara, or at other Costa Rican beach destinations). For this reason, it is not the best beach location for those travellers who wish to participate in many tours and activities during their time at the beach.
  2. Given the laidback and Bohemian feel of Playa Montezuma (a product of the relaxed attitude of the area’s inhabitants), Playa Montezuma is far more an area to visit if you would prefer to plan your trip as you go and not in advance. Operations in town move at a snail’s pace, and while some travellers love this about the area (pura vida, mae!), others feel more comfortable visiting areas where tourism is practiced in a more organized manner. For this reason, families (especially those with young children) tend to prefer the more family-friendly feel of Playa Samara to the laissez-faire atmosphere generated in Playa Montezuma.

Recommendations

  1. If a small-town beach feel complete with a handful of surf and yoga opportunities is what you are looking for than Playa Montezuma would be one of two prime Nicoya Peninsula beach locations for you (you may also want to consider Playa Guiones). Otherwise, if a more organized and developed beach area interests you (i.e., one that offers more things to do, more things to see, and schedules you can rely on), a different coastal area would be the smarter choice.

Extra notes

  1. A recommended day trip from Playa Montezuma includes a visit to Playa Tambor.
Nicoya Peninsula beaches
Playa Tambor

NICOYA PENINSULA BEACHES: PLAYA TAMBOR

Location in proximity to other Nicoya Peninsula beaches: located north of Playa Montezuma and south of Paquera

Distance from San Jose: 155km (approximately 5 hours and 45 minutes, including time for the ferry crossing but excluding time spent waiting for the ferry to depart, as this amount of time would be determined by the time of arrival at the port and the ferry schedule)
Closest Town: Paquera (large town)
Beach Status: public beach
Type of Sand: brown sand, moderately smooth beach

Selling points

  1. Ideal for those travellers who are looking for a quiet beach to relax at without the distraction of other visitors.

Disadvantages

  1. The Playa Tambor area is home to very few hotels as the coastal area is primarily consumed by the Barcelo Resort (and little else). For this reason, visitors who wish to stay at a hotel in the area have a limited selection of accommodation options to choose from.
  2. Playa Tambor offers very few tour/activity options–far less than can be found in nearby Playa Montezuma. For this reason, it is not the best beach location for those travellers who wish to participate in many tours and activities during their time at the beach (transportation to/from Playa Tambor is not regularly included with tours run from the Playa Montezuma area).

Recommendations

  1. Since some hotel options are located near the beach, it is not required that all visitors have a rental vehicle. However, since the Playa Tambor area offers few dining, shopping, and tour/activity options, it is often recommended that travellers staying in the Playa Tambor area make plans to visit nearby towns (such as Paquera or Cobano) or Playa Montezuma in order to access additional amenities. In this case, having a rental vehicle is advantageous as travellers can drive themselves to/from Playa Montezuma and other areas, however travellers without a rental vehicle can simply plan to use taxi services to get to/from where they wish to go.

Extra notes

  1. Visitors staying at the Barcelo Resort have access to Playa Tambor.
  2. A recommended day trip from Playa Tambor includes a visit to Playa Montezuma.

QUESTION TO COMMENT ON: Which of the Nicoya Peninsula beaches (Ostional to Tambor) is your favourite? Why?

Pura vida!

If you’re more of a visual learner, take a moment to view our gallery photos below from our most recent visits to Costa Rica’s Nicoya Peninsula beaches.

Plan to visit one of Costa Rica’s Northern Pacific Guanacaste beaches instead? Don’t miss our related blog post:

The Best Beach In Costa Rica: What To Know About The Northern Pacific Guanacaste Beaches

Below is a sample of photos taken at the Northern Pacific Guanacaste beaches you’ll learn about in the above post.

Plan to visit one of Costa Rica’s Central Pacific beaches instead? Don’t miss our related blog post:

The Best Beach In Costa Rica: What To Know About The Central Pacific Beaches

Below is a sample of photos taken at the Central Pacific beaches you’ll learn about in the above post.

Nikki and Ricky

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1 thought on “The Best Beach In Costa Rica: What To Know About The Nicoya Peninsula Beaches”

  • Nice and (in our experience) very accurate review of beaches. We’re smitten with Samara, or more accurately the Samara area. We really like the town, and love that it’s so close to so many great beaches. We think Playa Carrillo is one of Costa Rica’s largely undiscovered gems. Though, as you point out, there’s not much there and parking is very limited, it’s a stunning beach and huge. We bike there by riding up the Samara beach and cutting through to the road. We just booked our next trip to Samara and can’t wait.

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