What To Know About Playa Samara Costa Rica (Samara Beach)
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PLAYA SAMARA COSTA RICA (SAMARA BEACH)
Samara Costa Rica is the hub of tourism on the Nicoya Peninsula, yet it remains a small and moderately-developed beach community. We love that the the region offers such naturalism, from its specialty stores to its organic market to its shallow beach, where “pura vida” flows as constantly and effortlessly as each rolling wave. Offering the best ratio of “things to do” versus “opportunities to relax and do nothing at all”, Samara Costa Rica is an area of the country that rarely disappoints.
WHAT TO DO IN SAMARA COSTA RICA
- Visits to the Palo Verde National Park (try the Palo Verde National Park Tour)
- Kayaking (try the Wildlife & Birding River Kayak Tour or the Ocean Kayak & Snorkel Tour to Isla Chora)
- Snorkeling (try the Ocean Safari Snorkeling & Dolphin Watching Tour or the Ocean Kayak & Snorkel Tour to Isla Chora)
- Stand-up paddling (SUP) (try the Stand-Up Paddling Tour)
- Rafting (try the Tenorio River Rafting Tour or the Safari River Float Tour)
- Birdwatching (try the Wildlife & Birding River Kayak Tour)
- Mountain biking (try the Mountain Biking Beach & Mountain Moderate Tour)
- Surf lessons and surf trips (consider Choco’s Surf School, C&C Surf School, Tico Surf School, or Pato Surf School)
- Cave spelunking at the Barra Honda National Park
- Hiking (consider the Werner Sauter Biological Reserve)
- Sportfishing (consider Samara Fishing Trip or Samara Local Fishing)
- Ziplining (consider Wingnuts Canopy Tour)
- Gyrocopter tours (consider Flying Crocodile’s Gyrocopter Tour)
- Turtle nesting tours (consider visiting Playa Camaronal or Playa Ostional)
- Organic food/product shopping (don’t miss Samara Organics located inside the Natural Center)
- Spanish language learning (consider the Intercultura Costa Rica Spanish School)
- Souvenir shopping
The below Samara Costa Rica information can also be found on our related post:
SAMARA COSTA RICA DETAILS
(SELLING POINTS, DISADVANTAGES, RECOMMENDATIONS, AND EXTRA NOTES)
Located west of Playa Carrillo and east of Playa Cangrejal along Costa Rica’s Nicoya Peninsula.
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
Playa Samara selling points
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Nearby Playa Carrillo is an excellent place to take in a beautiful sunset!
Playa Samara disadvantages
- 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.
- 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.
Playa Samara recommendations
- 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.
Playa Samara extra notes
- Recommended day trips from Playa Samara include visits to Playa Carrillo, Playa Cangrejal, Playa Garza, and Playa Guiones (Nosara).
MAP OF PLAYA SAMARA COSTA RICA (SAMARA BEACH MAP)
QUESTION TO COMMENT ON: Have you been to Playa Samara Costa Rica before? What did you think?
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