Top 10 Surf Spots in North Costa Rica

Witch’s Rock Surf Camp’s ideal location in Tamarindo, Costa Rica makes us central to 10 unique surf spots in the immediate area. Whether you sign up for our Beginner Surf School, our Intermediate Coaching Tours, or our Advanced Guided Tours you’ll be taken to the perfect surf spots for your level, style, and gusto. Weather you want to learn to surf, or are an advanced surfer who just wants to score maximum tube-time, there is a surf spot nearby for you.

This list will give you an idea of where we surf in Guanacaste. As you’ll see, there’s a wide variety of spots, which offer waves of different shapes and sizes.

Take a look, decide what works for you, and get stoked!


1. Playa Tamarindo


Playa Tamarindo is the beach you’ll see when you walk right outside of our surf camp.  We are so lucky to have this beach as our front yard. Depending on conditions, this 1 mile stretch of beach offers rights, lefts, fast barrels, and gentle beginner waves. Playa Tamarindo consistently offers waves for beginners and intermediates that are learning to do turns and drop in on bigger waves. Take a virtual vacation to Tamarindo right now with our LIVE SURF CAM

When the tide & swell are just right, the Tamarindo Rivermouth has a perfect right-hander that can get good… VERY GOOD; especially for more advanced surfers. Check out our comprehensive Tamarindo Surf Spot Guide & Map here


2. Playa Avellanas


Playa Avellanas is a white-sand beach for intermediate to advanced surfers. You can do turns, hang 10, or even get barreled! The beach stretches for about 1 mile and there are 5 unique waves including reefbreaks and A-frame beachbreaks peaks. From dead low tide to peak high tide, you can find several working spots along this beach. Playa Avellanas is about 25 minutes south from the camp by car or about 15 minutes by boat. Make sure to check out Lola, the giant pig that wallows in the shorebreak.

3. Playa Marbella


Playa Marbella is an advanced wave about an hour to the south from the camp by car and about 45 minutes by boat. Even when there is no swell, Marbella always offers  consistent, powerful waves. Marbella is a delicate surf spot and the elements must line up to get it good, but when it’s on, it’s one of the best waves in the area. The beach is fairly small but there are waves along the entire beach so you can usually find an uncrowded sandbar.


4. Ostional


Ostional is a wildlife refuge 30 minutes south of Marbella. It’s the world’s most popular nesting sites for Olive Ridley Sea Turtles. Here you can literally see thousands of turtles on the beach AND surf amazing waves. However, usually when the turtles are nesting, you cannot surf here. This wave is for intermediate to advanced surfers. Ostional is about a 2 hour drive from Tamarindo.  You will think you have stepped back in time when you visit this secluded, picturesque beach with perfect, uncrowded waves.

5. Playa Guiones


Playa Guiones is about 20 minutes south from Ostional. Guiones is the name if the beachbreak in the town of Nosara. This wave is perfect for intermediate level surfers because the wave has an easy drop and a medium pace. Guiones is also ideal for advanced surfers that like to do wrapping cutbacks, floaters etc. Guiones is an well exposed beach that has consistent surf, so these “gentle giants” can work at all stages of the tide, making it perfect for a full-day trip.

6. Playa Secret Spot

We won’t tell you too much about this secret spot. We can only show you, and then we have to kill you. Kidding! (sort of) It’s for advanced surfers and you can only can get there by boat. It’s an incredible left and can be a throaty right.  Works when there is a medium to large-sized long period swell…. Sshhhhhh…..

7. Playa Grande


Playa Grande is the beach directly north of Playa Tamarindo. This is the most consistent beach-break in the area and will have more consistent offshore winds than almost anywhere in Costa Rica. Playa Grande is located in Las Baulas National Marine Park and is home to many leatherback sea turtles.

Playa Grande is for intermediate and advanced level surfers. It typically breaks at shoulder to head-high, and sometimes much bigger. Playa Grande is about 20 minutes from the surf camp or only 5 Minutes by boat! Check out our comprehensive Tamarindo / Playa Grande Surf Guide here

8. Playa SSsshhhhhh…

Secret Spot that works only when the swell comes from a certain direction and with a certain period. Not a lot of people know about it, so it’s a great option when everywhere else is crowded. This spot is for beginner, intermediates and advanced surfers depending on the swell.

9. Witch’s Rock


This is the surf spot that put Costa Rica on the map as a surf destination. Without a doubt, you want to surf this world-class wave. It’s name come from the legend of a witch living on the rock and the reverberating howling sounds of the strong offshore winds in the dry season. Witch’s Rock is a consistent beach break, offering long, roping left and rights with incredible barrels. Witch’s Rock is located in Playa Naranjo, which is part of the Santa Rosa National Park. This beach break became famous in the Endless Summer II Movie.

10. Ollie’s Point


Your legs will be burning after a day surfing this right-hand point break. The only way to get to Ollie’s Point is by boat. Generally, you will surf Witch’s Rock with the higher tides and Ollie’s point with the lower tides. The 2 spots are about 25 minutes apart from each other and there are a few secrets spots along the way. The wave can literally look like the Kelly Slater Wave Co. when the swell is right. Contact us here to set up your trip!

Amazing waves aside, you’ll be blown away by our psychedelic sunsets and Guanacaste’s unique cowboy culture. Witch’s Rock Surf Camp has been the go-to surf destination in Costa Rica for over 15 years and we will help you score the very best wave’s while we’re hosting you.

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