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An update from Evaneos
Playa Grande

Playa Grande (Costa Rica)

Practical information on Playa Grande

  • Beach / Seaside Resort
  • Nature Reserve / Wildlife Observation / Safari
  • Water Sports
3 / 5 - 2 reviews
How to get there
30 minutes by car from Tamarindo
When to go
From November to April
Minimum stay
One day

Reviews of Playa Grande

Baptiste Rutko Seasoned Traveller
27 written opinions

Just beside Tamarindo, the most touristy spot here, Playa Grande is a bit more difficult to get to if you don't have your own means of transport but it isTHE surf spot in the area.

My suggestion:
To my mind an ideal day at Playa Grande would be: arrive between 8 and 9 o'clock in the morning, surf for a few hours and then go have lunch. Afterwards, go back to the beach for a few more waves and finally admire the sunset.
My review
The place is pretty much a "lost" corner because it doesn't really have anything interesting to see. I only know it because of its reputation as a surf spot. Playa Grande beachis quite large and doesn't have many people on it, which makes it a good place for small groups or families.
If you are going to follow my advice and spend the day surfing, don't forget the sun cream because the sun is really scorching. As far as the surfing goes, it's not really for beginners. There are nearly always waves and quite substantial ones at that!
For lunch, there are several chiringuitos (beach bars) not far from the beach, not to mention that famous Costa Rican pinto gallo (rice and beans)! With your meal you could try a fresh Piña-Maracuya (Pineapple and passion fruit) smoothie, personally my favorite during this trip to Costa-Rica ​​​, and then you'll be all set to get back to the waves in the afternoon.​
Playa Grande beach
Justine et Clément Seasoned Traveller
10 written opinions

Playa Grande is well named - it is an immense stretch of fine sand on the Pacific coast of the Nicoya peninsula.

My suggestion:
The beach is famous for observing Leatherback turtles. The egg laying season is between November and March. Take binoculars and plan on spending several evenings there because the turtles aren't always easy to see.
My review

If you are going to Playa Grande, like everywhere in Costa Rica, remember to reserve your hotels in advance, especially during the local holiday periods (mainly December and April). Accommodation is quickly booked, the prices are higher and as Playa Grande is in a national park you can't camp.

However, the visit is worth the effort. The beach is magnificent and has the kind of sunsets you dream about. Because it is a national park the area is relatively well preserved compared to Tamarindo: the mangroves give it a certain style and provide some rare and welcome shade.

Because the beach is immense and bare its visitors are exposed to a lot of sun. So use total sun cream, take water and wear a hat!

The ocean has lots of waves but there are times when you can bathe without getting too far from shore.

Playa Grande at sunset
Playa Grande
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