Surfing at Manuel Antonio & Quepos, Costa Rica
Midway down the Pacific coast, Manuel Antonio is a popular surfing area that features several Spanish language schools. The waves are mellow, with one nice point break at the rock off Manuel Antonio beach.
Featuring foam boards, the Manuel Antonio Surf School is one of several such schools in Costa Rica; You can buy, rent or bring your own surfboard.
This town is a regular stop for backpacker’s trail traveling in southern Costa Rica. Backpacks and surfboards are a common sight in downtown Quepos.
The waves here are well suited for learning to surf. But not a lot of serious surfers visit Manuel Antonio to go surfing. Some do stop off on the way to Dominical, a few hours south along a bad road.
One popular area is the public beach, just north of Manuel Antonio National Park. This is a fine place for an afternoon of fun in the surf, but be sure to avoid leaving anything of value on the beach while you are in the water.
At the north end of this beach, one big wave breaks about 50 yards offshore.(High tide is best, but mid-tide going out is also good.)
Rip tides are also a problem in this area, but not as tricky as off the beaches north and south of Manuel Antonio
Where to Sleep and Party
Downtown Quepos is the place to look for budget and cheap rooms and cabinas. It is also home to the top places to party, such as Sargento Garcia and Banco Bar.
Manuel Antonio can be very expensive, especially during high season. Rates drop about 50% during low season (May through mid-December).
Food is cheap and plentiful in the Costa Rican places, such as Almendro. There are a few overpriced places to eat, but it won’t take long to spot them.