Costa Rica, Part 1: Tamarindo

Costa Rica isn’t too far from America, but despite this it still required me two 3hour flights to get there which almost caused a disaster. Having an hour and a half to change flights is never good, especially when you have to fill out customs forms (despite the fact I was intending on spending less than 2 hours in the country) and collect your baggage to put on a transfer carousel. The queues were huge and I was sure I was going to miss my connection, fortunately one of the stewards let me through and I made the flight with about 10mins to spare.

I landed in San Jose at 1am so headed straight to the hostel. The next day I explored a bit of San Jose and wasn’t too impressed so I was looking to get to the coast as soon as possible. I’d already booked a hostel in Tamarindo and was trying to figure out the best way to get there when I got talking to a couple of Aussie’s who were also heading up that way so we all headed for the bus together the next morning.

My original plan had been to stay in Tamarindo for 3 days but that didn’t happen, the town was awesome so I pretty much just got stuck there for a few extra days. The hostel was almost directly opposite to the beach, within staggering distance from all the bars, had A/C (a big bonus in Costa Rica) and had a load of cool people staying there.

A couple of American surfers were staying at the hostel and they’d rented a big 4×4 and offered to take me and the Aussies to different beach with them to surf so of course we went. The beach was called Playa Grande and the surf was probably shoulder high with the odd bigger one pushing through. Oh and there was no-one else out!

Been the only bodyboarder there I was trying to take off on anything that came through (not wise on the first wave of a set, makes it a pain in the arse to get back out) and the fact that I’d given my camera to one of the guys girlfriends meant I was trying for any wave as I wanted some good shots of me.

Bruce bottom turning at Playe Grande.


I had a couple of decent surfs at Playa Tamarindo, though the waves weren’t as good as at Playa Grande. The next good day for surfing was at Playa Negra, a beach a bit of a drive out of town so we all piled into the 4×4 and hit the road.

The waves were good but there was a bit of a disaster before any of us got wet, one of the guys girlfriends, Katie, got bit by a pig. No really. A big pig wanders round the beach bar and it took a little chunk out of her knee. Rob had to drive her back leaving myself, Bruce and Ross to surf and Shaina to chill on the beach and take photo’s.

I hate people who drop in.


Ross at Playa Negra.


Aside from all the surfing the main activity in Tamarindo was getting drunk. It was always ladies night somewhere so as long as you knew some girls or were friendly you could get free drinks for a couple of hours.

I had some pretty crazy nights there, with many photographs attesting to this and also showing me things I couldn’t even remember happening… got to love Guaro.

The Tamarindo Crew: (L to R) Matt, Me, Ross, Bruce, Harry, Katie, Rob and Shaina.



5 Responses

  1. That looks like fun! Great post 🙂

  2. Thanks, was awesome fun over there, one of the best countries I’ve visited!

  3. If you make it down further south you should check out surfing and fishing in Cabuya. Solo Bueno Tours ( offers great tours in the area. It’s right near Montezuma.

  4. God I miss Tamarindo & the nice beaches in & around the town. I’m glad to have met a cool twat like you John, mwahaha. – Harrison

  5. Good web site you have got here.. It’s hard to find good quality writing like yours these days. I seriously appreciate people like you! Take care!!

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