Nosara Day Trips
What to Do and See When You're Here
For a town that is about as laid back as they come, Nosara
’s slogan is all but too fitting: “No shirt, no shoes, Nosara.” One of the first expat surf towns established in Costa Rica, avid boarders from far and wide make the pilgrimage to the area’s three long beaches – Playas Guiones, Pelada and Nosara – for their seemingly endless stretches of sand and consistently killer waves. Otherworldly sunsets occur nightly at the Nosara Biological Reserve, where a hillside restaurant boasts birds’ eye views of the convergence of the Montana and Nosara rivers – along with a magnificent estuary where the duo meets the Pacific Ocean. Active travelers will want to spend a few days honing their surfing and yoga skills at the Del Mar Surf Camp, or kayaking hidden mangroves with a dynamic (and hilarious) guide named “Jungle Joe.”
Ostional National Wildlife Refuge
Tired of surfing? Try your luck wildlife watching for Olive Ridley sea turtles at Nosara
’s northern neighbor, Playa Ostional. This protected zone is famous for its ethereal arribadas – when droves of female Olive Ridleys flock to the same shores upon which they were born to lay eggs, thereby continuing the life cycle. The magical phenomenon occurs year-round, and each exodus lasts for three to seven days and nights. Arribadas usually coincide with the last quarter of the moon cycle, when there is very little ambient light. During the months of June to December, numbers of migrating reptiles skyrocket from tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands.
Located roughly 45 minutes south of Nosara
, Playa Samara is a popular beach destination for both Ticos and foreigners alike. Families, couples and solo-travelers all love this sunny town for its array of adrenaline pumping activities like canopy and ATV tours – but also for its playful tides and a tranquil ambiance that is nothing short of contagious. Party lovers treasure Samara’s lively weekend nightlife, while advanced surfers take advantage of its proximity to the intense waves at Playa Camaronal. Art aficionados are sure to find unique organic pieces at the Dragonfly gallery, where local artisan Leo Palacios showcases his colorful jewelry and artwork. Try not to miss out on a relaxing kayak trip to the pink-sanded Isla Choro, just offshore.
There is only one word to describe this unbelievable seaboard: lush. Fringed with neatly spaced tropical palm trees, the pristine white-sand beach creates an effect that is prettier than a postcard. Carrillo’s clear waters are ideal for swimming, snorkeling and wind surfing. Consistently calm waves lap lazily against an elongated shore, boasting ocean temperatures reminiscent of a warm bath. While creatures like coatimundis, howler monkeys and sand dollars are frequently spotted here in paradise, even more animals can be observed at La Selva Wildlife Refuge – situated uphill just a short walk away. Conveniently located just ten minutes south of Playa Samara, Playa Carrillo undoubtedly boasts one of the most immaculate and undeveloped coastlines in the country, and is truly one of Costa Rica’s best-kept secrets.