Wondering what the best beach in Costa Rica would be for 4 people, 1 week. Thanks!
Mentioned in this answer:
For a first-time visitor, I recommend either the Tamarindo area in Guanacaste or Manuel Antonio on the Central Pacific Coast. Both of these areas have a lot of things to do and a good selection of hotels and restaurants. They are popular tourist destinations but are also near some smaller towns and more private beaches if you want to explore. Both are great places to get a feel for Costa Rica for the first time. The differences are that Tamarindo is generally drier and flat, and Manuel Antonio has lush rainforest and tons of wildlife (especially monkeys).
Hope that helps. Good luck planning!
Hi Lisa, your question is rather hard to give a good answer to without a little more specifics about what you are looking for but I will give you a few tips I hope can help.
If you are a young family, with toddlers or youngsters and a man to keep happy you are in luck for their are a number of places all over the country.
There are all inclusives such as the Marriott Los Sueños Ocean & Golf Resort, very nice with fantastic pools for kids and a relatively calm beach area.
Puntarenas, the Pearl of the Pacific has a fabulous beach, one of the cleanest in Costa Rica that is a mecca for locals and international toursits alike and a great place to see cruise ships at dock and stroll Paseo de los Turistas have a pipa (fresh green coconut water).
The Jaco area with its incredible beach and surfing along with ample shops and restaurants is popular and relatively close to San Jose airports as well as other great beaches such as famous Playa Hermosa nearby.
Fishing from charters or shoreline is possible and there are a few tackle stores in Playa Herradura as well as golf cart rentals and american style grocery stores (Auto Mercado) banks, pharmacies and all the other necessary shops for a large group to stock up on their individual needs.
Manuel Antonio has a number of fabulous beaches in their National Park of the same name and many boutique hotels and even some childrens services at local schools can be found occasionaly.
Malpais and Santa Teresa are also highly visited beaches but it is a lot more rugged a trip their with many roads being unpaved. Beaches such as Montezumaand others in this area are famous for their beautiful waterfalls and other natural attractions.
The Carribean side is also gorgeous albeit a ways from the rest of Costa Rica in flavor and temperment. It is also a great place to explore quiet nature areas along its mostly National Park coastlines.
Wherever you choose be aware that the Pacific coast is a bit stronger in surges than the Atlantic or carribbean side and protect your skin from sun burns and poisonous plants such as Manchineel Trees which are Highly toxic to even stand under. Also it is important to tell you to take all the precautions recommended for swimmers ear and gastrointestinal disorders that result from bacteria ingressing into body openings while swimming at beaches where people live or congregate heavily. Be very careful too as many beaches have no lifeguards but those that do are well marked and patroled (Jaco Beach) and they also avail themselves of surfers and fisherman who double as Red Cross rescuers.
I hope you find this usefull and that you have a wonderful time beach hopping this great place on Earth.
Mentioned in this answer:
Hmmmm...that depends...what kind of beach do you like? Touristy for a young crowd...hit Jaco or Tamarindo. Looking for a resort...stay north in Papagayo and Conchal. Want to go off the beaten path and avoid all crowds and immerse yourself in nature and culture, check out San Miguel & Coyote...(just avoid the foreign owned hotels as they offer little tour and adventure info). Want to be on the Osa...check out Matapalo and Zancudo area....There is something here for everyone!
I am glad that you are planning to spend a week in Costa Rica!! I would like to add just a few hotels located in the Guanacaste area and in which I have stayed in a few occasions and consider very adequate for your trip. All these options are outstanding hotels therefore you can google each one and see which one accommodates better to your needs. Westin Playa Conchal, Andaz Peninsula Papagayo, Las Catalinas, Flamingo Marina Resort, JW Marriott Guanacaste Resort & Spa, Reserva Conchal Golf Club. There is another place that I haven't stay at but will recommend as heaven on heart: Hotel Punta Islita, (below picture was taken by my daughter last month while spending a short vacation here at Punta Islita). Playa Santa Teresa (as Richard explained), is an amazing beach, the only thing is that you must rent a 4x4 car. If you decide to visit this idyllic place, I will recommend to stay at Villas Hermosas....beautiful private villas run by its owners Tara and Brad. This place is a gem!!
I wish you have a great time in Paradise!
Mentioned in this answer:
This depends what you are doing in Costa Rica. If you are going to surf, I'd say Tamarindo but if you are going to just enjoy maybe something up near Guanacaste at one of the resorts such as the Four Seasons. Something I tell my clients..Costa Rica is not known for its beaches, they are black beaches and are not like Cancun or Cabo or Hawaii, but they are great for surfing.