20 Best Restaurants In Tamarindo

If you want fine dining options in Tamarindo, then HiR Fine Dining should be your go-to. If you want more mid-range price options with various cuisines, you should explore L’Estanco, El Jardin Escondido, Cala Luna Origen, and Antichi Sapori Sicilian Cuisine. If you are on a budget, then Little Lucha, Cactus Restaurant, and Surf Shack Burgers & Wings are the right choices. 

I love good food. Whenever my family and I travel together, I always make it a point to experience as many restaurants in the area as possible and indulge in their unique culinary offerings. Our recent vacation to Costa Rica, specifically Tamarindo, was no exception. Tamarindo has various options, from fine dining to more budget-friendly eateries and authentic local spots. If you want to learn about the culinary scene in Tamarindo, Costa Rica, I’ve put together this guide to highlight some of the best restaurants in Tamarindo.

Key Takeaways 

  • Best fine dining restaurants overall: HiR Fine Dining
  • Best fine dining for vegans: Mother Earth Vegan Restaurant 
  • Best budget-friendly restaurant for pastries: Breaking Bread
  • Best mid-range restaurant for couples: Cala Luna Origen 
  • Best restaurants for families: Surf Shack Burgers & Wings and Cala Luna Origen 

In the rest of this article, we will delve into the best dining experiences in Tamarindo, covering everything from fine dining establishments to mid-range and budget-friendly options. I will describe the cuisines offered and provide contact information for each. Let’s get started!

Fine-dining restaurants 

HiR Fine Dining

Location: 20 min south of Tamarindo, 10 min east of Playa Avellanas, Pinilla, Tamarindo 50309 Costa Rica

Cuisines: Fusion, Central American, Costa Rican Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten-Free, Vegan Options

Price range: $220-$340

Contact 

Website

Google map

Think of luxurious fine dining in Tamarindo, and you’ll envision HiR Fine Dining. This restaurant offers a fusion of Central American and Costa Rican cuisines, catering to vegetarian, gluten-free, and vegan diets. 

You’ll find it 20 minutes south of Tamarindo and 10 minutes east of Playa Avellanas in Pinilla, Tamarindo. HiR Fine Dining provides a relaxed, welcoming, and aesthetically pleasing atmosphere. The ambience is laid-back and communal, with a menu that showcases intelligent yet playful culinary creations. 

During our reservation, we shared the table with another couple, and from the moment we arrived, we felt at ease. The dining experience featured a delightful seven-course tasting menu, with highlights including pumpkin soup, bread duo, octopus, chipotle shrimp, and chimmi shrimp. 

HiR Fine Dining is a must-visit if you are a chef or an adventurous eater. You’ll find that the restaurant caters to those without dietary restrictions and offers a culinary journey rich in flavor and artistry. While the experience comes with a luxury price tag, it’s undoubtedly worth it if you appreciate exceptional dining experiences. Additionally, I advise you to book a ride to bring you here because it’s a little hard to get to. 

What I liked: 

  • I loved the relaxed and welcoming atmosphere of the restaurant.
  • The food was incredibly clever and tasty. 
  • The surprise seven-course meal was a delightful experience, with each dish beautifully presented and offering unique flavors.

What I didn’t like:

  • The location is a little hard to get to.

Mother Earth Vegan Restaurant 

Location: 100 meters west of AYA Part of Mother Earth Vegan Hotel, Tamarindo 50309 Costa Rica

Price range: $25–$60

Cuisines: Latin, International, Contemporary, Healthy, Fusion, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten-Free Options, Vegan Options

Contact

Website

Google map

This restaurant offers diverse cuisines, including Latin, international, contemporary, and fusion, with options for vegetarians, gluten-free diets, and vegans.

My husband and I visited the food truck and decided to stop by the restaurant. The restaurant serves delicious vegan dishes that showcase locally sourced seasonal produce, all beautifully presented. 

You’ll find it in a charming saltwater pool with a wall fountain. The setting adds to the overall dining experience. The hotel owner is committed to providing a variety of food options and environmentally friendly practices, including the use of citronella to repel mosquitoes.

You’ll enjoy a variety of offerings, including burgers, hotdogs, and chips, all made with Beyond Meat as the main protein source and freshly prepared right in front of you. The bar by the pool offers a selection of creative cocktails, mocktails, and an extensive wine list.

Although Off the Grid is a bit of a trek uphill from downtown Tamarindo, the upscale vegan dining experience and picturesque poolside setting make it well worth the journey. 

Although the prices may appear steep, the restaurant is a part of a newly constructed all-vegan hotel that significantly enhances the area’s value. The slightly higher prices are reasonable considering the quality of the building and the unique dining experience offered.

What I liked: 

  • The vegan dishes were delicious, beautifully presented, and made with locally sourced ingredients.
  • The staff were attentive.
  • The poolside setting and creative cocktails were great for the setting.

What I didn’t like:

  • Getting to this restaurant is a little bit of an uphill hike. 

El Terreno: Urban Food and Bouldering

Location: Playa Tamarindo, a la par del banco nacional, Tamarindo 50309 Costa Rica

Cuisines: Mexican, Peruvian, Bar, Grill, Israeli, Pub, South American

Contact

Website

Google map

This restaurant offers a diverse range of cuisines, including Mexican, Peruvian, Israeli, and South American, and options for breakfast, lunch, dinner, brunch, late-night snacks, and drinks.

Here you’ll find a fantastic place to dine and enjoy drinks, with a variety of food options to choose from. The atmosphere is pleasant.

Overall, the restaurant is amazing, the food is delicious, and the staff are incredibly friendly. We had a great time dining here.

What I liked:

  • The atmosphere was great, and I had much fun trying the wall climb.
  • The staff were super friendly and made our dining experience enjoyable.

What I didn’t like:

  • I didn’t have any specific complaints or dislikes about the restaurant.

Budget-friendly Restaurants 

Little Lucha

Location: 100 meters east of Banco National The location is opposite the Night Market, next to Chocolat, in Tamarindo 50309, Costa Rica.

Price range: $3–$12.

Cuisines: Mexican, Street Food, Latin, Central American Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan, Gluten Free Options

Contact

Website

Google map

The Little Lucha serves Mexican, street food, Latin, and Central American cuisine, with options for vegetarians, vegans, and gluten-free diets. It is located 100 meters east of Banco National, across from the Night Market, and next to Chocolat in Tamarindo.

Here, you’ll find delicious burritos and tacos. After reading some great reviews, I went with my husband to Taco Tuesday. The tacos were flavorful and came with plenty of chips and salsa. I added beans and rice because I love them. They had three hot sauces, and the green one was my favorite.

The servers were friendly and accommodating, and the prices were good, especially because of the Taco Tuesday deal. The place was clean with cool decor.

The only downside was the wait. We had to wait about half an hour at the door and then another hour at our table. However, the wait was worth it for the delicious food and the $5 margarita special. The restaurant offers indoor and covered outdoor seating, and the staff was friendly.

What I liked:

  • I enjoyed the delicious tacos and burritos at The Little Lucha, especially on Taco Tuesday.
  • The variety of hot sauces, especially the tasty green, was a hit for me.
  • The servers were all friendly and accommodating, and the prices were great.
  • The restaurant had a clean environment with cool decor, which added to the experience.

What I didn’t like:

  • We had to wait about half an hour at the door and then another hour at our table.

Cactus Restaurant

Location: Carretera Playa Avellanas, Pinilla, Tamarindo 50309 Costa Rica

Price range: $5-$15

Cuisines: Central American, Costa Rican, International, Fusion, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options

Contact

Website

Google map

This restaurant offers a diverse menu featuring Central American, Costa Rican, international, and fusion cuisines, with options suitable for vegetarians, vegans, and gluten-free diets. You’ll find it on Al Carretera Playa Avellanas in Pinilla, Tamarindo. Here, you’ll enjoy a wide selection of breakfast options in a relaxing atmosphere.

This restaurant also offers delightful local dishes for lunch or dinner. The staff are friendly and welcoming, and the prices are surprisingly affordable considering the quality and quantity of food offered.

My husband ordered the shrimp and rice dish during our visit, which was incredibly fresh and tasty, especially with the homemade mayonnaise. I chose a unique pita-like sandwich filled with bananas, cheese custard, and honey, offering a delightful blend of flavors. We indulged in a pineapple flambé dessert, a favorite of my husband’s, and enjoyed refreshing smoothies made with fresh fruit. To our surprise, the bill totaled only $27, offering excellent value for money.

The only drawback is the lengthy drive on rugged dirt roads to reach the restaurant. Additionally, since the seating is outdoors, passing cars may kick up dust that can enter the dining area, detracting slightly from the experience.

What I liked:

  • I absolutely loved the diverse menu options, especially the delicious breakfast choices, at the restaurant.
  • The food was incredibly fresh, healthy, and delicious.
  • The staff were wonderful and friendly, contributing to the welcoming atmosphere.
  • The prices were surprisingly low considering the quantity and quality of food served, making it excellent value for money.

What I didn’t like:

  • The only downside was the long drive on rugged dirt roads required to reach the restaurant.
  • The outdoor seating allowed passing cars to kick up dust, which landed on us.

Tico Tamarindo

Location: 25 Metros Sur del Supermercado 2001, Tamarindo, Costa Rica

Cuisines: Costa Rican, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan, Gluten Free Options

Contact

Website

Google map

Tico Tamarindo offers breakfast, lunch, brunch, and drinks. The food is delicious, and the coffee is fresh and tasty. The location is conveniently walkable from most hotels. They accept credit cards, which is convenient for customers.

The atmosphere at Tico Tamarindo is quaint and charming, and the service is exceptional. 

We dined here twice during our trip to Tamarindo and were impressed with the food and service. They served some of the best Costa Rican coffee I’ve ever had, and the huevos turcos dish was a standout.

The only downside was that we encountered a lot of flies during our meal, which detracted from the dining experience. 

Despite this drawback, the restaurant has a quaint and rustic ambience. The service was excellent, although there were language barriers with some of the staff. The menu offers a good selection of food, although the vegetarian options are limited. 

What I liked:

  • The waitress was very friendly, and the service overall was excellent. 
  • It was convenient that they accepted credit cards.
  • The quaint atmosphere of the restaurant added to the dining experience, and it was easily accessible from most hotels.

What I didn’t like:

  • We had to deal with flies during our meal, which was quite bothersome.

Surf Shack Burgers and Wings

Location: The Tamarindo Circle, La Rotunda, Tamarindo, Costa Rica

Price range: $5-$12.

Cuisines: American, vegetarian-friendly, gluten-free options

Contact

Website

Google map

Located at The Tamarindo Circle La Rotunda, this restaurant boasts a basic shack with a concrete floor, a laid-back vibe, and surfboards as decorations. Here, you’ll find amazing burgers made with fresh ingredients and served in generous portions, all at great prices. Along with the inviting decor and excellent service, the food is plentiful and delicious. 

At the roundabout in Tamarindo, you’ll find this restaurant right by the beach. It’s a fantastic spot to have lunch or dinner on a beach day. 

You’ll appreciate the kids’ corner and playground if you are dining here with your kids. 

During our early casual dinner before a tour, we tried their basic burgers with lots of toppings and shared a side of onion rings, which were delicious and satisfying. While burgers and wings are popular, they also offer other menu items, like fish tacos. It’s a cool, family-friendly spot with reasonably priced, tasty food, but it may not offer anything extraordinary. Overall, it’s a simple and convenient option for a snack and drink by the beach.

What I liked: 

  • Great family-friendly location.
  • They offer affordable prices and delicious food. 
  • The restaurant is easy to get to. 

What I didn’t like:

  • I had no negative experience during my visit to this restaurant.

La Bodega

Location: In the Hotel Nahua Diagonal from Banco Nacional, Tamarindo 50309 Costa Rica

Price range: $6-$10

Cuisines: Costa Rican, International, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options

Contact

Website

Google map

You will find La Bodega restaurant in the Hotel Nahua Diagonal, Banco Nacional, Tamarindo. 

It’s a delicious lunch spot. My husband and I both had the loaded salad with chicken. The greens, carrots, avocado, eggplant, radish, tons of other fresh veggies, and the chicken were flavorful and perfectly cooked. 

We enjoyed a sandwich with a beverage and a side of homemade plantain chips. Everything was excellent. The chips were delicious, and the flavor was fresh lime juice. The bread was homemade and truly superb. The beverage we chose was passion fruit juice. The sandwich had fresh lettuce, tomato, and grilled shrimp. 

The only downside is that the food service took slightly longer than normal to arrive. When it did, the portion sizes were small, and the options on the menu were somewhat limited.

What I liked:

  • We made the food fresh and flavorful.

What I didn’t like:

  • The service was slow.
  • The menu was limited.

Anthony’s Asian cuisine

Location: Frente Antigo BAC San Jose Alapar Wild Panda The location is either the old BAC San Jose or the Alapar de Wild Panda Restaurante, located in Tamarindo, 50309 Costa Rica.

Price range: $2-$1

Cuisines: Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, Sushi, Asian, Thai, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options

Contact

Website

Google map

If you’re craving Asian cuisine in Tamarindo, this is the place to go. This restaurant offers diverse Asian cuisines, including Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, sushi, and Thai, with options for vegetarians, vegans, and gluten-free diets.

You’ll find it. Located inside the small food court in Tamarindo, Anthony’s might be easy to miss if you don’t venture inside. Anthony’s is conveniently located next to the Wild Panda Bar.

While the appearance may not be impressive, Anthony’s is truly phenomenal. The sushi was fresh and beautifully presented, and the pad Thai was delicious. 

The staff are very friendly, and the service is great, all at an affordable price. They offer a combination of Filipino, Thai, and Japanese cuisine. The pad Thai noodles are popular, and the sushi rolls are also quite good. We dined here two days in a row and left satisfied each time.

The menu offers various options, and the portions are generous. The food is incredibly fresh and tasty, and the prices are reasonable. The staff are also excellent, making for a pleasant dining experience overall.

What I liked:

  • I liked the diverse Asian cuisines offered at Anthony’s, including Filipino, Thai, and Japanese options.
  • The sushi was fresh and beautifully presented, and the pad Thai was delicious.
  • The staff were very friendly, and the service was great.
  • The portions were generous, and the food was incredibly fresh and tasty at affordable prices.

What I didn’t like:

  • The appearance of the restaurant wasn’t very impressive.

Falafel Bar Tamarindo

Location: Avenida Central 250, next to La Oveja Surf Restaurant, Tamarindo 50309 Costa Rica

Price range: $11-$40

Cuisines: vegetarian-friendly, vegan options, gluten-free options

Contact

Website

Google map

This restaurant is situated on Avenida Central 250, next to La Oveja Surf Restaurant in Tamarindo. They offer a large menu with a wide variety of Arabic-based dishes, including brilliant falafel and chicken shawarma plates and very substantial wraps.

The atmosphere at the restaurant is great, and the food is even better. The server was amazing and attentive. If you are a vegetarian, you’ll find many options here. You’ll also find that they offer good wines and music, and they’re conveniently close to the nightlife scene.

Despite their busy schedules, they seated us easily and served us reasonably quickly during our dinner around 7 p.m. The fish falafel plate was fresh, delicious, and served in a huge portion, accompanied by a flavorful, chopped Mediterranean salad. The ginger-cinnamon iced tea was also very flavorful and refreshing.

The food was really good, with excellent hummus and pita. The people were nice, the atmosphere was pleasant, and the price was good.

While the decor is lovely, the restaurant is on a busy, dusty street, which can be a downside. 

What I liked:

  • I loved the variety of Arabic-based dishes, especially the falafel and chicken shawarma.
  • The server was attentive and made the dining experience memorable.
  • It’s a great choice for vegetarians, with plenty of options available.
  • The portions were generous, and the ginger-cinnamon iced tea was refreshing.

What I didn’t like:

  • The restaurant’s location is on a busy, dusty street.

Breaking Bread

Location: Centro Comercial el Punto, local 10 a 40m Oeste Del Supercompro, Tamarindo, Costa Rica

Cuisines: Pastries

Contact

Website

Google map

If you’re searching for Tamarindo’s finest coffee and bread, look no further than this spot. You’ll love their coffee and banana bread. You’ll also find a variety of excellent bread types. Their cinnamon twists are particularly delectable, and they simply melt in your mouth. 

The croissants and cinnamon rolls are also exceptional. This is the place to get a healthy breakfast in Tamarindo. They offer various savory options, freshly baked bread, and excellent coffee. The service is exceptional, and the establishment is very clean. The prices for tamarindo are average, leaning towards the lower side.

While this place is simple and nice, seating outside might not be comfortable for young children or older individuals. However, this is a great choice if you’re looking for quick and tasty options.

What I liked:

  • I absolutely love the coffee and bread at this spot, especially the banana bread and cinnamon twists.
  • The food and drinks are delicious, and the prices are reasonable.

What I didn’t like:

  • I found the outdoor seating less comfortable, especially for young kids or older individuals.

Pasta Casera Tamarindo

Location: Plaza Conchal, Junto a la Farmacia, Tamarindo 50309, Costa Rica

Cuisines: Argentinean, Latin, Fast Food, Italian, Vegetarian Friendly

Contact

Website

Google map

You’ll find a variety of cuisines at this restaurant, including Argentinean, Latin, fast food, and Italian, and they also cater to vegetarians.

Despite being named Pasta Casera, this is not just about pasta. You’ll love options like beef and cheese, spinach and cheese, ham and cheese, and chicken empanadas. They even offer a delicious Nutella pie.

While it’s primarily a takeout spot for pasta and empanadas, you can also dine in at a few tables, although it’s nothing fancy. If you decide to eat in, you might want to try their delicious ravioli.

Expect a short wait of about 10 minutes for your order, but once it arrives, you’ll realize it was worth it. Overall, you’ll find the prices fair and the service good at Pasta Casera.

What I liked:

  • The convenience of being able to dine in, despite it being mainly for takeout, was great.
  • The food, like the ravioli and grilled chicken, was tasty, and the fresh bread was delicious.

What I didn’t like:

  • The wait for the orders, about 10 minutes, was a bit long for me. 

mid-range-priced restaurants

Antichi, Sapori, Sicilian Cuisine

Location: Avenida Central Plaza Tamarindo, local number 10, in front of Pacific Park, Tamarindo, 85666596, Costa Rica

Cuisines: Italian, Pizza, Mediterranean, Sicilian, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options

Contact

Website

Google map

Antichi Sapori Sicilian Cuisine is your go-to spot. They offer a variety of Italian, pizza, Mediterranean, and Sicilian dishes; they also cater to vegetarians and provide vegan and gluten-free options.

While it’s a small establishment, it’s advisable to reserve in advance, especially if you want to indulge in their amazing seafood and shrimp linguini.

The prices are reasonable for the exceptional food and welcoming atmosphere. The in-house preparation of all food items ensures perfectly cooked al dente pasta and flavorful sauces. The staff, including the owner, provide attentive and friendly service.

Although the outdoor seating lacks ambience, it’s conveniently located in downtown Tamarindo. We highly recommend the gnocchi with pistachio sauce, spaghetti and meatballs, seafood linguine, and spaghetti alla bolognese as main dishes.

However, finding the restaurant can be difficult due to its location behind a commercial building that emits an unpleasant aroma. Additionally, the loud music from the nightclub next door may disturb outdoor diners.

What I liked:

  • I loved the personalized attention from the owner at Antichi Sapori Sicilian Cuisine.
  • The food, especially the seafood and shrimp linguini, was delicious and represented authentic Italian cuisine.

What I didn’t like:

  • I found it a bit challenging to locate the restaurant.
  • The loud music from the nightclub next door disrupted the dining experience, especially when dining outdoors.

Green Papaya Taco Bar

Location: Playa Tamarindo, behind the Ovega Negra hostel, Tamarindo, Costa Rica

Price range: $5-$12.

Cuisines: Mexican, Fusion, Healthy, Central American, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options

Contact

Website

Google map

If you want a diverse culinary experience, head to this restaurant behind the Ovega Negra hostel in Playa Tamarindo. Here, you’ll discover a charming taco bar offering a fusion of Mexican, Central American, and other cuisines, with options catering to various dietary preferences, including vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free.

Friendly servers greet you as you enter and guide you through the menu, which offers generous portions at reasonable prices. The vibrant atmosphere with indoor swings and wooden furnishings adds to the dining experience.

You’ll find a variety of vegetarian and vegan options to choose from, along with healthy fare. There’s something for everyone, whether it’s burritos, chips, salsa, or refreshing drinks. Be sure to try their standout dishes, such as the Greek roll-up, mahi, and tuna tacos, and finish off with an indulgent espresso dessert paired with vanilla ice cream.

The staff here are attentive to dietary restrictions, ensuring a worry-free dining experience. However, if you’re a senior over 50, you might find the seating a bit uncomfortable due to its firmness. It’s a fantastic spot for young diners and families to enjoy, but perhaps not the best choice for seniors.

What I liked:

  • I loved the diverse menu options, especially the vegetarian and vegan choices.
  • The portions were generous, and the prices were reasonable.
  • The atmosphere, with indoor swings and wooden furniture, created a lively dining experience.
  • The service was friendly and attentive.

What I didn’t like:

  • I found the seating to be a little uncomfortable.

Cala Luna Origen

Location: Playa Tamarindo Cala Luna Hotel, Tamarindo 50309, Costa Rica

Price range: $8-$55

Cuisines: Seafood, International, Fusion, Healthy, Costa Rican, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options

Contact

Website

Google map

You’ll find Origens to be a fantastic spot for a family outing. Here, the chef personally engages with guests, explaining the intricacies of each thoughtfully crafted dish. You’ll appreciate the freshness of the locally sourced ingredients, which truly enhance the flavors of the cuisine. The menu offers various options, including several vegetarian options, and the attentive wait staff ensures a pleasant dining experience.

Origens accommodates vegans and understands dietary allergies, offering a fusion of global flavors with Costa Rican techniques. For a romantic evening, the dim lighting and live music create a charming ambience, complemented by attentive service from the staff. This is a great restaurant for couples.

The only downside may be that the restaurant can get busy and occasionally seems understaffed.

What I liked:

  • We had an engaging interaction with the chef, who thoughtfully explained each dish.
  • The food’s freshness, sourced locally, is evident in its flavorful taste.
  • The menu offers a diverse selection, including several vegetarian options.
  • The ambience, with dim lighting and live music, creates a romantic atmosphere.

What I didn’t like:

  • The restaurant can get quite busy, and at times, it feels understaffed.

L’Estanco, El Jardin Escondido

Location: East intersection of Corona Street and Central Avenue, Tamarindo, Costa Rica, Tamarindo 50309, Costa Rica

Price range: $20-$50

Cuisines: Mediterranean, Healthy, Fusion

There are options that are vegetarian friendly, vegan, and gluten free.

Contact

Website

Google map

This restaurant offers Mediterranean and fusion cuisines, with options suitable for vegetarians, vegans, and those with gluten sensitivities.

Our dining experience began with an informative presentation of their signature cocktails, which exceeded our expectations. The wait staff was knowledgeable and provided helpful recommendations.

Once seated, we received a detailed menu overview, leaving us eagerly anticipating each dish described. The food itself was flavorful, complex, and absolutely delicious. The staff’s exceptional service, care, and expertise truly elevated our dining experience.

The atmosphere was incredible, complemented by an attentive and capable staff. With great ambience, service, and live music, this restaurant offers everything for a perfect night out in Tamarindo. 

What I liked:

  • I love the exceptional quality of the food.
  • The staff’s professionalism and dedication impress me; they’re knowledgeable and attentive.
  • The signature cocktails are innovative and well-crafted.
  • The atmosphere is welcoming, with live music and a beautiful garden setting.

What I didn’t like:

  • There’s nothing specific that I disliked about the experience.

Tamaki

Location: Centro Commercial Plaza, Tamarindo 50309, Costa Rica, next to the Oneida Skate Park.

Cuisines: Sushi, Japanese, Seafood, Asian, Healthy, Peruvian, Fusion, Japanese Fusion, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options

Contact

Website

Google map

You’ll find a variety of sushi rolls to choose from, including a vegan option. The restaurant offers a diverse selection of sauces, allowing you to sample more than one. 

Despite its unassuming appearance and location in a shopping center corner, the sushi is fresh and tasty. You’ll get to enjoy outdoor sitting with top-notch service. 

The prices are also rather affordable. The staff members are friendly, and the ambience upstairs, surrounded by trees and soft lighting, is delightful. They stay open late, making it a great option after drinks.

What I liked:

  • The delicious selection of sushi rolls includes a vegan option.
  • The friendly and kind staff members provide pleasant service.
  • The restaurant exudes a cozy atmosphere, particularly when you sit upstairs beneath the trees and enjoy the dim lighting.
  • The convenient location and fair prices

What I didn’t like:

  • I had no specific dislikes from my experience here.

Tropic Tamarindo

Location: A 50 Metros De La Terminal De Buses Alfaro Calle Santa Cruz Cabina 31,frente Al Jardin De Tamarindo, Tamarindo 50309 Costa Rica

Cuisines: Latin, Costa Rican, Healthy, Central American, Vegan Options

Contact

Website

Google map

This restaurant uses Costa Rican Caribbean ingredients and recipes, offering a charming atmosphere. My husband and I had the opportunity to participate in one of Tropic’s mixology classes, where we learned about Costa Rican fruits and the intricacies of crafting each drink. We also learned how to prepare fresh ceviche, the best I’ve ever tasted.

Their drink selection includes unique options like a Negroni variation with rum and coconut served in a smoke-filled bowl of seashells, a passionfruit elixir with subtle Frangelico undertones, and Cacique with smoked watermelon served in a pink flamingo cozy. These beverages complemented perfectly their corn and potato empanadas, which were outstanding, along with the deliciously refreshing ceviche. 

The garden setting creates an incredible ambience, with only 6 or 7 tables available, so you should arrive early if you want to dine here. Their empanadas, ceviche, skirt steak, and pork ribs were exceptional, and the presentation of each dish was entertaining and personal. It’s a place to take your time and truly enjoy the experience. It’s across the alley from the food trucks; just look for the wooden gates.

The food is delicious, creative, and locally sourced, making it a unique dining spot with great vibes. However, it’s important to note that the prices of their dishes surpass those of most restaurants in the same category.

What I liked:

  • The mixology class was a fantastic experience.
  • The ambience in the garden setting was incredible, and the food presentation was entertaining and personal.
  • The food was delicious, creative, and locally sourced.

What I didn’t like:

  • The dishes were more expensive than at most restaurants in the same category.

Wabi Sabi Sushi 

Location: Centro Commercial Esmeralda, Frente a Hotel Tamrindo Diriá, Tamarindo, 19000 Costa Rica

Price range: $4-$12

Cuisines: Japanese, Seafood, Sushi, Asian, Healthy, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options

Contact

Website

Google map

You’ll find a variety of Japanese cuisine at this restaurant, including seafood, sushi, and healthy options.

You’ll enjoy freshly made sushi with a wide selection of rolls and superb gyoza, all served in a nice, casual atmosphere.

The fish is extremely fresh and delicious. Although the flavors of mint and ginger are subtle, we highly recommend the spicy tuna roll and chicken teriyaki bowl. The food has a unique taste. Additionally, the owner is very friendly, despite the small and simple ambience.

Wabi Sabi Sushi offers beautiful surroundings and excellent staff. The food is also very affordable. 

The staff is helpful with recommendations, and the restaurant is clean and well-organized. They even offer pick-up and delivery services.

You’ll love the real, fresh, and tasty sushi options, including fantastic salmon and tuna sashimi, all at reasonable prices. Plus, the staff is friendly and accommodating to special requests.

What I liked:

  • Freshly made sushi with a variety of rolls
  • Beautiful restaurant surroundings and attentive staff
  • Reasonable prices for the quality of food.
  • Friendly and accommodating staff, willing to address special requests

What I didn’t like:

  • I had no particular negative experience here. 

La Oveja Surf House

Location: 100 m from Oeste Del Banco Nacional. The address is Diagonal Al Supermercado Vindi, Tamarindo 50309 Costa Rica.

Cuisines: Contemporary, Fusion, Vegetarian Friendly

Contact

Website

Google map

This spot offers contemporary and fusion cuisines, focusing on vegetarian-friendly meals.

You’ll find it. Situated just a short stroll from Tamarindo’s main street, it’s perfect for unwinding with drinks, shooting pool, or enjoying live music while savoring a meal. Although it’s not beachfront, the atmosphere and service are exceptional. The prices are reasonable given the quality of the food.

They serve burgers and beer in a picturesque setting with excellent products. However, it’s important to note that the menu pricing does not explicitly include taxes and service/tips.

I particularly enjoyed the diverse and healthy options available on their menu. It’s a great place, offering delicious cocktails at reasonable prices. The food and mezcal drinks were delightful, especially the surprisingly fantastic cheeseburger and burrito.

While the establishment has a pleasant ambience and friendly staff, the food comes from two different kitchens, which can be a bit complicated. During our visit, orders from one kitchen arrived before those from the other. Additionally, the constant sound checks by the live band, coupled with loud music from the speakers, detracted from the overall experience.

What I liked:

  • The diverse and healthy menu options were impressive.
  • The atmosphere was inviting and perfect for enjoying drinks or live music.
  • The cocktails were delicious and reasonably priced.

What I didn’t like:

  • The food from two different kitchens caused some confusion and inconsistency.
  • The constant sound checks by the live band and loud music from the speakers were disruptive.

Wrapping Up

Tamarindo offers a vibrant culinary scene with diverse dining options to suit every palate. When choosing restaurants to dine at, choose locations that prioritize fresh, locally sourced ingredients and offer diverse menus to accommodate various dietary preferences. Consider the restaurant’s atmosphere, whether you prefer a luxurious fine dining atmosphere, a casual beachfront setting or a cozy, intimate ambience.

Whether you’re craving sushi, Italian cuisine, or fusion dishes, you’ll find exceptional dining experiences that cater to various dietary preferences in Tamarindo. 

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About 

Born in California, Michelle traveled extensively through the USA and Europe before moving to South Florida during the pandemic. Her career in Marketing has taken her all across the world. Her favorite country is France but she'll never turn down a beach vacation!

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