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Costa Rica Surf Report and Forecast

By: Greg Gordon –


Caribbean Coast – November is a great month to visit since there are not a lot of tourists nor surfers that will be on the beaches while the waves will start to get better toward the end of the month. Just check for swell the week after a Northeaster goes off the coast of North Carolina. Be sure to stay a week just in case you need to wait for waves, and meanwhile enjoy the beautiful scenery and delicious food this side of Costa Rica has to offer.

Pacific Coast – High season doesn’t officially start until November 15th, so you can still catch some deals at the beginning of the month. And the crowds are not a factor until Thanksgiving weekend. As for surf, there are still a few South swells pushing up from Australia, it’s a very active tropical season in the Pacific due to El Niño, and the Aleutians start firing off some north swell, too. So expect consistent chest to head high plus conditions almost every day.  

Full moon – November 2nd   New Moon – November 16th

(email if you are interested in any of these surf trips to Costa Rica)

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CR Surf Spring Break Package trip ~ only $550 pp + tax*

 Includes: 4x4 SUV (Bego) or Roundtrip shuttle to and from San Jose
6 nights in beachside hotel (Playa Hermosa or Esterillos) with Free breakfasts
Board rental for one week OR (1 extra photo session)
One 2-hr. photo session w/CD
*Flight is extra: AA has flights for $299, TACA for $290 from Orlando to SJO (3/29 to 4/4 ~ subject to change) based on a group of 4


The Costa Rican Surf Team returned victorious from the Central American Surfing Games, held at Sunzal, La Libertad, in El Salvador. Not only did the team win first, but all surfers on the team placed as finalists and ALL five categories were won by Ticos. The team’s next contest will be at the Pan American Surfing Games to be held in Olivenca, Bahia in Brazil on November 7-15. (Most of them still are looking for sponsors, so if you know anyone contact us.)

The 2009 Pura Vida No Pro will be held Nov. 21 at the Pelican Hotel in Esterillos Este. This event began in 2002 when a group of surfers came together to introduce the sport of surfing to kids from the orphanage in San José. For more information, visit

The Jaco Surfing Association is putting together a contest to promote student/surfers and education. It will have all age groups from grade school thru University competing in their prospective age groups, and will take place on November 28th-29th. Contact Chuck at W.O.W. Surf Shop in Jaco for details and signup forms.

The Reef Classic Surf contest organized by ALAS (Latin American Surf Tour) will be held December 4-6 in Jaco with $20,000 in prizes! And the first date of the Circuito Nacional de Surf is planned for December 12-13 in Playa Hermosa. Visit the site for more details.


From the 10th of September until October 4th, the group Terra Nostra CR organized the largest nature cleanup in Costa Rican history. There were 46 sites cleaned with the help of 2413 volunteers. In total they collected 24,078 kilograms, of which 27% were recyclables. Local businesses, MINAE, municipal governments, environmental groups, and schools all pitched in for this tremendous effort.  Visit for more details.

The hotel Tortilla Flats in Dominical is only one of the many places selling calendars filled with photos of local Ticas in order to raise funds for the lifeguards’ salary and equipment. If you are in the area, buy one to keep the program alive. Or if you can’t come visit but still want to help, donate at:

The community of Pavones has been given permission by the government to organize a referendum on whether to deny the construction of experimental yellow fin tuna cages off the coast of Punta Banco. An association has been formed to start the process, but it will take a lot of planning and resources to fulfill the legal requirements. The objective is that if the referendum passes and they are denied, then it would be very difficult for any other company to try to build them in the future. To help stop the offshore tuna cages and keep Pavones clean, you can donate at

You can support environmental initiatives in Costa Rica by buying a CRSURF eco-T-shirt. Not only are they made from recycled materials, but $3 from every sale goes to help PRETOMA (helping sea turtles and sharks), the Surfrider Foundation Tamarindo Chapter, and the Dominical Lifeguards.






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