Surfing in Nosara is exciting and varied. Most surfers visiting Nosara head straight for Playa Guiones, which is, hands down, one of the most consistent breaks in Costa Rica. Playa Guiones is a swell magnet and Punta Guiones (at the South end of the beach) juts farther out into the Pacific than many other points in Costa Rica. This is also why fishing is so good, because we are so close to the continental shelf. As a result of this, Playa Guiones picks up both North and South facing swells brining surfable waves here over 300 days a year.
Though the days of completely empty line-ups are gone, we still have plenty of waves for surfers of all skill levels–from beginner to expert. Playa Guiones is a beach break with peaks up and down the bay. So it is easy to find a spot without too many people surfing. Beginners are urged to go toward the South end of the beach (near the cemetery). The busiest months in the water correspond with the busiest times of our high season (November-April).
Offshore winds blow most every morning during dry season, from mid-November until the end of April, making for great surf conditions. During December and January, there are some days where the offshores blow almost all day long, otherwise the wind usually switches onshore by 10am. Most surfers are in the water between 7am – 10am and return for a sunset session around 4pm if the ocean cleans up. In the rainy season the waves are often bigger, but expect less consistent wind and slightly choppier and disorganized conditions.
The break at Guiones is sometimes called a “beginner” or “longboard” wave, but don’t let that description fool you. True, it is a sandy bottom beach break, and when the waves are small it can be the perfect spot to learn. Typically, when the waves are smaller or the tide is high, longboards and fishes dominate the line-up. However, when larger swells come in, waves here can be quite big and powerful. When it is big, the surf here in the Nosara area should be taken with extreme caution and only experienced surfers should paddle out. There can be many rip currents and lots of water moving around, making for potentially dangerous conditions for those that are unprepared and/or out of their comfort zone.
There are a handful of other good surf breaks and beaches within an hour or so drive North and South of Playa Guiones, but you’ll have to ask the locals how to find those…