Nosara Beaches in Costa Rica (Complete Guide)

Nosara is home to several beaches, not just the name sake Playa Nosara.  Today I’ll share with you an overview of all of the beaches of Nosara and talk about what makes each of them unique.

For example, Playa Garza provides gentle waters for swimmers, and Playa Ostional is a sanctuary for sea turtles. So let’s dive head first into the Nosara beaches, which were made highly popular by being highlighted in as one of the world’s blue zones.

nosara beaches

Beaches in Nosara Overview

  • Nosara’s beaches offer pristine, unspoiled beauty catering to surfers, swimmers, and nature enthusiasts alike, with a special emphasis on eco-friendly practices.
  • From surfing world-class waves to enjoying tranquil kayak rides on the Nosara River, the region provides a diversity of water activities for all ages and skill levels.
  • Visitors to Nosara can indulge in fresh, local cuisine at beachfront restaurants like La Luna and Pacifico Azul, and find accommodations such as Olas Verdes Hotel that cater to both luxury and adventure seekers.

Exploring the Unspoiled Beaches of Nosara

Situated on the breathtaking Nicoya Peninsula, Nosara Costa Rica boasts a collection of pristine and tranquil beaches that remain relatively undisturbed compared to the extensively developed shores of Guanacaste. With 15 kilometers of coastline designated as protected areas, Nosara stands as a symbol of Costa Rica’s dedication to safeguarding its exquisite natural scenery.

Nosara enchants all who visit, from experienced surfers seeking out exhilarating rides on the Pacific swell to wildlife lovers enraptured by observing sea turtles nesting. The allure of Nosara’s sandy stretches is guaranteed to capture your affection.

Playa Guiones: The Surfer’s Haven

Guiones Beach, also known as Playa Guiones, is a haven for surf enthusiasts. It’s notable for offering over 300 days of suitable surfing conditions each year, making it an outstanding location for those looking to catch waves. The expansive 7 km beach provides varying breaks that accommodate every level of surfer.

  • Novices relishing in the calm waves
  • Intermediate wave riders seeking skill enhancement
  • Expert surfers challenging the intense swells near Guiones Point

Beyond just riding the waves, Playa Guiones encompasses numerous facilities tailored to support a surfer’s needs. Surf schools abound alongside equipment rental outlets and upmarket accommodations like Olas Verdes Hotel—all aimed at enriching your time spent on the surfboard. If solitude while you surf appeals to you more than bustling beaches, plan your visit from January through March when tranquility prevails allowing a peaceful engagement with the sport.

Playa Garza: A Swimmer’s Retreat

Even if surfing doesn’t appeal to you, don’t worry. Playa Garza is welcoming with its:

  • Pristine golden sands
  • Gentle and tranquil sea conditions
  • Appealing location for swimmers
  • Protected natural harbor setting
  • Ideal environment for a relaxed swim or an idyllic picnic by the water’s brink
  • An atmosphere of peace and privacy

-A haven of serenity away from the commotion

-An opportunity to fully relax

The enchantment of Playa Garza extends beyond just swimming. This quaint fishing village also draws in those who love fishing.


-scuba diving



All these activities are facilitated by the placid, crystal-clear waters shielded by rocky promontories. Consequently, whether your preference lies in unwinding on shore or embarking on aquatic adventures, there’s something at Playa Garza that caters to every inclination.

Playa Ostional: Witnessing Nature’s Marvels

Ostional Beach in Nosara is a wonder of nature, widely celebrated for being a critical nesting site for Olive Ridley sea turtles. During the peak months from July to December, it transforms into an epicenter of natural wonder as myriad turtles make their way onto the beach to deposit their eggs – an event that’s nothing short of spectacular.

Ostional Beach is not solely dedicated to its turtle visitors. It also serves up formidable waves sought after by adept surfers looking for a thrill beyond easy swells. Although these powerful waves might be too demanding for novices, they offer just the right level of excitement and challenge that experienced wave riders crave. So whether one has an affinity for wildlife or seeks surging adrenaline rushes, Ostional Beach caters to all passions.

Delightful Water Activities Beyond Playa Nosara Surfing

Nosara’s allure isn’t limited to surfing. Its beaches present a rich array of aquatic pursuits. Among the alternatives available are:

  • Engaging in boogie boarding atop mellow waves
  • Enjoying serene swims in crystal-clear waters
  • Embarking on kayaking journeys along the Nosara River
  • Angling for catches at Playa Garza

There’s an activity suited for each visitor, offering ample opportunities to embark on thrilling adventures.

The diversity of water-based sports ensures that visitors can partake in a unique experience with every passing day, never running out of ways to enjoy the vibrant offerings of Nosara’s coastal playground.

Boogie Boarding and Swimming

Playa Pelada is an ideal location for those looking to enjoy boogie boarding, a sport that both families and novices find exhilarating. The beaches of Nosara provide varying conditions well-suited to this adventure-filled activity, where the gentle waves create an optimal setting for spending a day mastering the art of wave riding amidst calm surroundings.

Nosara’s beaches also cater extensively to swimming enthusiasts. They feature zones with tranquil and clear waters, providing safe havens that welcome swimmers from any experience level. As the water temperature remains balmy throughout the year, visitors can relish in revitalizing swims during any season during their stay.

Kayaking on the Nosara River

If you’re in search of a peaceful adventure, consider the allure of paddling through the Nosara River. While meandering along these calm waters, you have the unique opportunity to witness an array of birds and wildlife within their natural surroundings.

When embarking on a kayaking journey, you’ll be treated to:

  • Informative exploration into the indigenous mangroves and multitude of species thriving within this riverine ecosystem.
  • The chance to come face-to-face with juvenile crocodiles and herons amongst other inhabitants of the riverside.
  • An experience that marries the excitement of discovery with nature’s tranquil beauty.

Nosara’s Hidden Gems: Secluded Beach Escapes

Nosara is home to not only well-known beaches, but also hidden coastal havens that present a unique seaside adventure. The scenic shorelines of San Juanillo, along with the entrancing rocky coves of Pelada Beach, rank among the finest beaches and are poised to captivate you with their tranquil elegance and distinctive allure. Discover the magnetic appeal of these beach enclaves as you venture through Nosara’s more obscure stretches of sand.

San Juanillo: The Undiscovered Cove

San Juanillo, a serene and somewhat undiscovered treasure, provides an exceptional coastal encounter with its distinctive twin crescent-shaped shores. This peaceful location is perfect for anyone seeking to spend a restful day at the beach thanks to its gentle waters and numerous leisure options.

Seeking solitude away from Nosara’s more populated beaches? San Juanillo invites you to relax beneath palm trees, explore marine life while snorkeling in crystal clear water or engage in the simple pleasure of building sandcastles along its shoreline.

Pelada Beach: Tidal Pools and Local Charm

Pelada Beach, less popular but equally stunning compared to Guiones Beach, is another hidden treasure in Nosara. Known for its captivating rocky outlets and serene tidal pools, Pelada Beach offers an unmatched coastal experience.

At low tide, the beach offers several activities for visitors to enjoy, including:

  • Exploring the enticing caves and tidal pools
  • Hiking up to the clifftops for a scenic vista of the surroundings
  • Engaging in activities beyond beach lounging, such as exploring the connecting jungle path to Playa Guiones.

The unique combination of Pelada Beach’s rocky topography, serene tidal pools, and local atmosphere offers an unmatched coastal experience.

Essential Tips for Your Nosara Beach Experience

To guarantee a pleasant and secure visit to Nosara’s beach, it is essential to consider several safety measures. This includes shielding oneself from the sun and maintaining proper hydration levels, along with engaging in environmentally conscious behaviors. Remembering these tips is key.

Eco-Friendly Practices

In the spirit of preserving the pristine beauty of Nosara, those who visit are tasked with maintaining it. One effective method is ensuring you take your trash with you, as there are no garbage bins on Nosara’s beaches. By not leaving waste behind, we avoid polluting this beautiful area.

To Safeguard its natural charm by lessening our environmental impact here’s what one can do:

  • Favor walking or bicycling over motor vehicles to navigate local paths.
  • Whenever feasible, use shared transportation methods or carpool.
  • Conserve electricity by turning off lights and disconnecting gadgets when they’re not in use.
  • Choose appliances and lighting solutions that are energy efficient.
  • Implement recycling and composting practices to minimize refuse.

While picking up shells, stones or vegetation could seem like a harmless activity for keepsakes from these stunning shores might be appealing, collecting them should be avoided in order to protect the integrity of Nosara’s coastline ecosystem and ensure that its allure remains for others who follow.

The Best Beachfront Dining in Nosara

Indulging in a sumptuous meal while enjoying breathtaking views of the ocean is unparalleled, and Nosara serves this experience perfectly. With numerous dining establishments right on the shoreline, one can enjoy fresh seafood blended with genuine local tastes against the scenic backdrop of the beach.

La Luna: Al Fresco Elegance

La Luna is a sophisticated establishment situated right by the beach, where open-air dining presents breathtaking views of the ocean. Nestled in Playa Pelada, this restaurant delights both visitors and local patrons with its menu that captures the essence of regional cuisine.

Patrons can indulge in an unhurried brunch or enjoy an intimate dinner beneath the starlit sky at La Luna, where each meal is enhanced by both exquisite flavors and a welcoming ambiance sure to leave lasting impressions.

For those seeking a refined culinary adventure paired with spectacular scenery, La Luna stands out as the premier destination.

Pacifico Azul: Coastal Culinary Delights

Pacifico Azul, a renowned dining destination in Nosara, sits at the core of the fishing village San Juanillo. This charming seafront eatery presents an exceptional dining ambiance with stunning panoramic views of the ocean that flank it on either side.

At Pacifico Azul, patrons can indulge in seaside gastronomic pleasures featuring fresh seafood and indigenous recipes guaranteed to excite your palate. No matter if you have an appetite for a substantial seafood dish or prefer something like a refreshing salad, Pacifico Azul is equipped to satisfy all culinary desires.

While this is a shortlist, I have a full list of top Nosara restaurants on this page.

Accommodations with Easy Access to Nosara’s Coastline

After a day packed with thrilling experiences, it’s unparalleled to come back to cozy lodgings that offer convenient entry to the shores of Nosara. Whether you prefer upscale holiday homes in Playa Guiones and Playa Pelada or establishments such as Olas Verdes Hotel, Nosara presents diverse lodging options designed to satisfy the preferences of all visitors.

Olas Verdes Hotel: The Surfer’s Dream Stay

The Olas Verdes Hotel is the quintessential destination for surf enthusiasts. With Playa Guiones just a stone’s throw away, this hotel provides unparalleled convenience for those eager to take advantage of Nosara’s renowned waves.

At the same time, novices need not feel intimidated—the Olas Verdes Hotel caters to newcomers by providing surf lessons designed for beginners. This ensures that all guests, regardless of their surfing prowess, can have an exceptional and memorable experience while lodging in comfort at Olas Verdes. Whether you’re a veteran wave-rider or taking your first plunge into the world of surfing, this hotel offers something special for everyone.

Navigating Nosara: Travel Tips for the Perfect Beach Day

The journey to Nosara can be quite an adventure. The road from Nicoya to Nosara is particularly notorious, featuring a rugged and dusty terrain with numerous sharp bends and concealed potholes. It’s recommended that travelers opt for vehicles equipped with 4-wheel drive, especially during the rainy season, which spans September through December.

When it comes to selecting your transportation method for reaching Nosara, several options are available.

  • Public buses
  • Private shuttle services
  • Commercial direct flights
  • Personal vehicle usage
  • Rental offerings such as all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and bicycles

Each mode of travel presents its own unique experiences along with varying levels of convenience and comfort. It’s important not just to focus on arriving at your destination, but also to enjoy the trip itself—exercise care when navigating these scenic yet demanding roads in Nosara while absorbing the captivating surroundings.


To sum up, Nosara stands as an idyllic haven for those enthralled by the lure of the beach. Its unspoiled beaches offer both thrilling aquatic sports and a serene atmosphere perfect for relaxation, while its array of delectable eateries and cozy lodgings cater to every preference. With offerings that appeal to avid surfers, wildlife aficionados, or culinary adventurers alike, Nosara is poised to provide a memorable coastal journey. Prepare your luggage and heed this advice for an extraordinary escapade in Nosara!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you swim at Nosara beach?

Certainly, swimming is an activity you can enjoy at the beaches in Nosara, encompassing Playa Guiones, Playa Pelada and Playa Ostional.

Go ahead and immerse yourself in the waters as you bask under the sunshine!

What is the most swimmable beach in Costa Rica?

Manuel Antonio Beach, celebrated for its exceptional allure and situated in a national park that harmoniously marries the jungle with the ocean, stands as Costa Rica’s premier beach ideal for swimming.

Is Nosara Costa Rica worth it?

Absolutely, opting for Nosara in Costa Rica as your surf holiday destination is a stellar choice. It offers excellent surfing lessons, stunning beaches, and a taste of delightful local foods – you’ll be sure to cherish the experience!

What is the main attraction of Nosara, Costa Rica?

In Nosara, Costa Rica, the tranquil beaches stand out as a premier destination for surfing enthusiasts and wildlife watchers alike, with sea turtles being among the notable species observed.

How much of Nosara’s coastline is protected?

About 15 kilometers of Nosara’s coastline is protected under the Ostional Wildlife Reserve.

Rate this post


Peter is a digital nomad who largely writes from Asia, Europe, and South America. Always following the "vibe," he sets up shop in hostels and AirBNB's and continues to entertain us with wild stories from life abroad. Ask him anything in our community forum.

Leave a Comment