Tired of the cold and masses of people back home? Then get ready for a trip of a lifetime and spend you holidays in Costa Rica! There is so much to do in this beautiful country over the holidays and into the new year! With endless coasts of beautiful beaches, dense jungles full of wildlife and uncharted areas worthy of a road trip what are you waiting for!?
Tamarindo is an all-time favorite for most people visiting the Pura Vida country. Located about an hour from the Liberia international airport and situated on the Pacific coast this small surf town packs a punch for all ages. Better yet during the holidays, there is even more to experience in Tamarindo and the surrounding areas!
Find the perfect vacation rental or hotel for you and the family and don’t worry you can feel the holiday spirit down here (even Santa Claus comes down here to say hi to the kids at our local events). Local houses line up Christmas lights on their homes or in their palm trees, the town offers holiday events, and enjoy a Christmas dinner in town or with a private chef at your rental.
Once you are here and ready to spend your holidays in Tamarindo be prepared as there is a lot to do during your vacation! You will need to plan accordingly to make sure you have time for everything. Here are a few of our favorite things that you must add to your list!
What to Do in Tamarindo –
Christmas in Costa Rica is full of palm trees covered in lights, beaches full of activities and traditions that are highlighted during this time of the year. If you decided to spend your holidays in Tamarindo get ready for a variety of things to experience from the land to the sea.
Traditional Fiestas –
The beginning of December sets the time for the local town next door (Villareal) to begin to set up the rodeo for the fiestas! The fiestas happen twice a year here and you can expect to see a lot of traditions. Everyone comes out for 5 days to watch bull riders in the ring, eat local food, enjoy rides and even kick up the dirt with some local salsa dancing! They usually begin mid-December around the 13th/14th and is definitely something you do not want to miss!
Beach Time –
While Tamarindo beaches are famous for surfing and relaxing they can often get a bit crowded during the holidays. If you are visiting over the holidays in Tamarindo you definitely have to check out the beaches here before exploring other beaches. They often hold events around New Years with concerts on the beach, volleyball tournaments, local promotions and events for the kids.
However, this can become crowded for those looking for some R&R on their vacation. So, hop in your rental car and get ready as there are beautiful beaches to the North and South of Tamarindo!
A few of our favorites to explore to are –
Playa Avellanas – Located about 30 minutes South of Tamarindo and is a great spot to surf, beach comb or sit back and relax and eat at the Famous Lola’s restaurant. The restaurant is home to a large pig named Lola that comes down and sunbathes and plays in the water on the beach. This is also a great spot to go for a surf as well!
Playa Negra – Looking for a local beach that is gorgeous and offers excellent waves? Keep on driving South of Avellanas for about 10 minutes and you will hit this surf town! The quiet town of Negra offers waves for the more advanced surfer and beautiful beaches that are quiet and untouched for those looking for peace in quiet.
Brasilito/Playa Conchal – Heading about 20 to 30 minutes North of Tamarindo you will reach a local town of Brasilito. This town offers pretty beaches and awesome local food! With local sodas or restaurants lining the beach, you can enjoy some fresh ceviche while playing on the beach. If you walk around the town heading south you will hit Playa Conchal. This is called shell beach and is GORGEOUS! You can only reach it by foot but it is well worth it to head there for the day and relax in calm waters and a white coastline.
Playa Dantita – Heading about 45 mins North of Tamarindo you will hit the town of Las Catalinas. This gorgeous development looks a lot like Tuscany and is still under construction. Once you drive through here you will hit a local beach road and park here. Signs will say Playa Danta. Once you park you will grab your things and hike up over a small hill for about 15 minutes until you hit this secluded cove with turquoise water, white sand beaches, and lush foliage. This is an excellent spot to take a book or some friends and just sit back and take in your surroundings.
Explore the Ocean –
Back in Tamarindo, you may want to see what else you can do and what the town has to offer. Well if you love the ocean and sea life then one of the top things to do in Tamarindo is head out on a boat for the day! Head out on the water for an amazing day of snorkeling, lunch, open bar and more with Dream Chaser! Or wake up early in the morning and head out on one of the top Tamarindo sportfishing boats – Capullo – reel in your catch of the day with the crew & enjoy adventures on the water!
You can’t go wrong here as anything out on the ocean is well worth it! One of the favorites is heading out on a Tamarindo sunset cruise to explore the coastline and maybe see some dolphins, whales, and/or turtles. The tours include open bar, light lunch, swimming, beachcombing in a secluded cove and more. This is a perfect tour for families, couples or solo travelers!
Wander the Town –
When thinking of what to do in Tamarindo you have to get out their wander through the small beach town. While there are only a few roads there is a lot to do here! With ex-pats moving here from around the world there are a variety of amazing shops to buy souvenirs, clothes, bikinis and more! Then, of course, you have an eclectic mix of amazing restaurants as well.
For those with families, you can enjoy the new park that includes an amazing skateboarding area, basketball, and toys to play on! There is also putt golf, several soccer fields and if you are looking to escape the heat you can head to the local movie theatres.
Every week in town there are also several markets you have to try out! Every Thursday in the evening there is an outdoor market near the Tamarindo Gym that has 40+ vendors with jewelry, clothes, food, and drinks. While wandering around you can enjoy local music and even take a short walk up the street to a local brewery that has a half-pipe, corn hole, hammocks and more!
Then every Saturday starting at 8 am there is a local market located by the kids’ part that has an abundance of local pastries, fruits, food, jewelry and more. This goes on all day so you can’t miss it!
While there is plenty to do during the day in Tamarindo this surf town does not sleep! After sunset and moving into the night you can experience a variety of hotels with live music, sports bars, outdoor clubs and more. You can dance salsa under the stars every Friday at Monkey Bar or enjoy the beats of international DJs at Rumors or sit back and have a few while playing pool at Oveja Negra. There is always something going on in the town and you will not be bored!
The last and the best thing to do in Tamarindo enjoys the end of the day with a magnificent sunset. This hour of the day is special to not only tourists but to all the locals. This is the time of the day to sit back with friends on the beach or at a local restaurant and enjoy the beautiful show of nature. Every sunset in Tamarindo is absolutely beautiful and different. While sitting on the beach and taking in the beautiful beach and ocean you will see how the sun slowly moves down and melts into the ocean. This is the ultimate relaxation and makes you realize how lucky we all are!
During the sunsets here you will see parrots and white spoonbills fly over the jungle while Pelicans wrap up their fishing time and head on out for the day. The Moon and stars slowly emerge once the sun has descended and you have even more time to just sit back and enjoy life! This is the land of Pura Vida and we wouldn’t have it anywhere!
So, while you are sitting in the cold, planning all your holiday parties or daydreaming about enjoying the holidays in Tamarindo we are here for you! Start planning your trip and if you need to find out what else there is to do in Tamarindo don’t hesitate to reach out! We want to share our holidays with you and have you experience the beautiful country of Costa Rica!