Costa Rica Surf Seasons: Explained

Costa Rica directly translates into “rich coast”, and if there is one thing the coast of this beautiful country is rich in, it’s surfing. Located in Central America, Costa Rica has coastlines in both the Pacific and the Caribbean. And with the country being well-known for its beautiful beaches and coast, it has become an incredibly popular destination not only for general tourists but especially for surfers.

But here’s the thing with surfing, you’ve got to not only pick the right place but also the right time. Every place has its surfing seasons, and knowing them well can help you decide when to take the trip. So when are the Costa Rica surf seasons?

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with a full explanation of surfing in Costa Rica and its seasons. Let’s get right into it!

Surfing in Costa Rica:

With a rainforest climate and beautiful beaches, Costa Rica has warm water and amazing waves all year round, which is why it has become such a popular surfing destination.

If you do go to Costa Rica for some surfing, you need to be aware that there are four different regions amongst which surfing locations are divided. Each region has its own surfing spots and appeals.

Let’s take a look at all four surfing regions in Costa Rica:

Northern Costa Rica:

The Northern region of Costa Rica is often known as the Guanacaste coast. There are plenty of amazing surf breaks to be found in this area, and if you’re lucky with your timing, it shouldn’t be too crowded.

Some of the best places to go are Playa Naranjo, which is known as the Witch’s Rock, and Ollie’s Point where there is a world-class point break that runs for around 300 yards.

There are also plenty of other beaches and surfing locations, with lively and colorful towns along the way to keep you well-entertained.

Central Costa Rica:

Central Costa Rica has some amazing surfing spots, with the most popular and well-known one being Boca Barranca. This river mouth is amazing for surfers, as it can point-break for an insane length longer than eight football fields.

Other popular areas in the Central region are Playa Hermosa and PLaya Esterillos. But by far, the most common surfing spot is Jaco, which also has the busiest surfing town.

In this region, you just have to be careful of any river pollution, and of any crocodiles that might be lying about!

Southern Costa Rica:

The Southern region of Costa Rica is often known for having some of the best surfing spots in the entire country. The waves are big and long, allowing you to ride them for a good amount of time.

The only problem is that this region is less consistent with optimal weather, as it tends to be quite rainy, and it’s also a very rugged and rural area of Costa Rica. But if you get a good surfing day, some of the locations in this region will be a total game-changer for you!

If you do go surfing in this region, we recommend you do some research first, as it is not as accessible to tourists, and it isn’t as easy to get by around the area.

Caribbean Costa Rica:

Costa Rica has two sides of the coast, with the Pacific Ocean to the West, and the Caribbean in the East. When surfing on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica, you will find fewer breaks, and you will quickly notice that surfing isn’t as consistently good.

Plus, you will have to watch out for crocs at river mouths, and for sharks in the sea, as they’re pretty common around that area!

Nevertheless, if you take all of the necessary precautions, and you manage to time your surfing right for optimal conditions, this region can be extremely fun to surf in, and it’s popular amongst the surfing community.

The Surfing Seasons in Costa Rica:

Although every place has its surfing seasons, with best and worst times for surfing, Costa Rica is lucky enough to claim that surfing is possible all year round.

In fact, Costa Rica has nice warm weather with lovely warm water and amazing waves, all year round, regardless of the season! So as a general rule, you should be good at surfing no matter when you’re going to be in the country.

However, there are still the seasons to consider. In particular, Costa Rica has two different surfing seasons:

The wet season:

Also known as the rainy season, it takes place between May and mid-November. This is the period of time in which it rains the most in Costa Rica, meaning there will be less of a chance for surfing. (Although there will still be plenty of perfect surfing days during this season).

If you want to make the most of surfing during the wet season, you should go up to the Northern region, as that is where it rains the least, and it will mostly stay dry.

The Southern region, on the other hand, will be the rainiest, and the most inconsistent when it comes to surfing days.

The dry season:

The dry season takes place between mid-November and May, and it is usually the best season for surfing as the weather will be the most consistent all throughout the country, regardless of region.

Other things to note are when to surf in the pacific side of Costa Rica, and when to choose the Caribbean side. Truth is, that regardless of season, the Pacific side is a lot more consistent and overall better for surfing, while the Caribbean will tend to be more inconsistent.

However, between October and April, storms begin to brew in the Caribbean side, and the sea comes alive with extra amazing waves.

As for the rest, the water stays at the same temperature of around 80 degrees Fahrenheit all year round, so as we said, surfing is good no matter the date in Costa Rica!