The Best Beaches in Costa Rica, The Southern Zone

We’ve compiled a list of some of the best beaches in Costa Rica to make it easy for you to plan your next visit, happy planning!

We’ve compiled a list of some of the best beaches in Costa Rica to make it easy for you to plan your next visit. There is no shortage of beautiful landscapes and scenery and the further south you go the land becomes more rugged, untouched, and dramatic.

Playa Biesanz– Playa Biesanz is one of the best beaches in Costa Rica. You can access the beach by hiking down a jungle path close to Hotel Parador in Manuel Antonio. This beach is a bit more quiet and less traveled than others and it is surrounded by lush jungle. It also happens to be a great snorkeling beach. The waters here are typically more calm and good for swimming.

Manuel Antonio National Park– The beach within Manuel Antonio National Park is one of the most beautiful beaches in all of Costa Rica. It is a biodiverse and white sandy cove that is protected from the open ocean. After a hike through the jungle it feels like you somehow arrived on a Caribbean island when you arrive at this beach. The waves are also very calm here making it a great swimming and hang out spot for families and all ages.

Playa Linda or Playa Matapalo– Playa Linda is a much more remote beach with dark sand. This beach is about 25 minutes from Quepos and Manuel Antonio and it is lined with palm trees. While it is not the best swimming beach there are at times there some surfable waves. The beauty about this beach is that it is less traveled and seems to go on as far as the eye can see!

Dominical Beach– Dominical beach is one of the best surfing beaches in the area. The beach starts out rocky on the north end where the mouth of the Baru river empties into the ocean. Then the beach gets sandier and more walkable as you head toward the south end. It is one of the few beaches in the area with a full time lifeguard program. The south end of Dominical beach is much more walkable especially at low tide. It is very private and away from the town of Dominical so if you are looking for a quieter and more scenic stretch of beach away from any noise, this is the spot.

Dominicalito– Dominicalito is very scenic and beautiful protected bay. It is just south of Dominical by about a mile. This beach also has some surfable waves for intermediate surfers, the waves here form off of the rocky shelf and sand bottom. It is also a phenomenal sunset spot.

Ventanas Beach– Ventanas Beach is near Ojochol Costa Rica, it is a beautiful stretch of beach that has large rocky outcroppings. It is named for the caves that have been carved out of the rock for years by the ocean forming two “ventanas” or “windows”. At low tide you can walk almost all the way through the tunnels.

Playa Tortuga– Playa Tortuga is also in Ojochal and it is a very rugged and ever changing dynamic beachfront. As you walk toward the entrance to this beach you’ll pass a turtle reserve. Playa Tortuga is famously known for all the sea turtles that lay their eggs here during certain parts of the year.

The beach is dynamic because it is located near the mouth of the Terraba River. The water is always changing the landscape depending on the rains from further up the mountain and also depending on the tides. It is scenic and beautiful and on the north end of this beach you can also find some caves to explore.

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