You're Going to Love Nosara
Like a little slice of Southern California transplanted to Costa Rica, Nosara is one of the world's greatest surfing destinations. But it has attractions Malibu could never match, including verdant rainforests that teem with colorful creatures.
Top 5 Reasons to Visit Nosara
Life in Nosara revolves around beaches and boards. Rent a board for virtually nothing at Playa Guiones and dive straight into six-feet-high breakers or take some lessons to master the art of riding the waves.
2. Stunning Beaches
If you don't fancy humiliating yourself in front of the surfers, Nosara's beaches are a great place to relax - particularly Playa Guiones, which stretches for three blissful miles.
3. The Chance to Explore the Rainforest
The hills around Nosara are covered in rainforest, where you can hike and birdwatch, but it's worthwhile venturing further afield to tropical reserves like the Werner Sauter Biological Reserve, where you'll see dazzling birds and plenty of curious primates.
4. It's a Vibrant Yoga Center
Nosara is studded with yoga clinics, where visitors can purify their minds and work their muscles, easing the stresses of home and achieving total relaxation.
5. It's Got a Great Laid-Back Vibe
Above all else, people head to Nosara to get away from it all. Soak up the sunshine at beach bars like Bar Olgas, sip organic smoothies next to the sea, and enjoy the slow pace of life in a beautiful resort.
When to Visit Nosara
High season is dry season in Nosara - which runs from around November through March and April.
How to Get to Nosara
Liberia Airport (LIR) is the closest point of entry. You'll need to take a taxi or rent a car from there. Taxis should cost around ₡80,000.
If you are driving from Liberia, take Highway 21 to Nicoya, then switch to Highway 150 to Samara, before taking Highway 160 north along the coast to Nosara.
Buses run from San Jose to Nosara via Nicoya every morning at 5:30 am. It takes about 4 hours 30 minutes and costs ₡150,000.
Airlines serving Nosara
Where to Stay in Nosara
Great beachfront hotels in Nosara include the popular Harmony Hotel, which offers massage and yoga on-site, while the Sunset Shack Hotel is also a good option.
Popular Neighborhoods in Nosara
Playa Guiones - Nosara's premier beach, Playa Guiones stretches for three miles along the Pacific. It's a magnet for surfers and sunbathers alike.
Playa Pelada - much smaller than Playa Guiones, Pelada is arguably more picturesque. A working fishing community, it's also home to Bar Olgas, an atmospheric seafront nightspot.
Playa Garza - thought of as more upscale than the other two beaches, Playa Garza is an idyllic spot for snorkeling, with reefs very close to the water's edge.
Where to stay in popular areas of Nosara
How to Get Around Nosara
There's no local bus network along the seafront, although buses run between nearby Nicoya and Nosara. Electric carts can be rented to zip from beach to beach.
Companies like Nosara Taxi Cab provide a reliable service, offering set fares of between ₡9,000 and ₡30,000.
Places to rent a car of your own include Alamo and National, where daily rates can be as low as ₡7,500.
The Cost of Living in Nosara
If you want to shop for beachwear or souvenirs, head to downtown Guiones, where you'll find a range of tourist stores. However, Nosara isn't really a shopping destination.
Groceries and Other
Local supermarkets include Super Nosara and Super La Paloma, where 12 eggs shouldn't cost more than ₡1,600.
Where to Eat in Nosara
Most of the best places to eat in Nosara are right next to the ocean. Head to La Luna for Asian-European fusion meals, sip healthy smoothies and nibble on sandwiches at El Manglar, and lunch at local favorite the Beach Dog Cafe. Meals should be cheap, at around ₡7,000 per head.