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Costa Rica Surf Travel News – December 2008

Travel – Flight specials - Orlando to SJO <$343.00 any date between 12/1 and 12/11 on American Airlines. Thanks to our travel partners at Tico Travel, ONE BOARD FLIES FOR FREE on American Airlines flights from Miami or Orlando to San Jose! Also TACA is offering flights for $319 from 12/1 to 12/13 from Miami to San Jose. ($50 each way for surfboards) Remember to sign the petition against fees for carrying surfboards here -

Heavy rains on the Caribbean are causing a few mudslides outside of the major beach towns, so be careful when driving along the coast. Waves have been great for the last two weeks.

The CRSurf Shop is having a Pre-Holiday sale. Free shipping in the continental U.S., and everything has been discounted from 5-15%. Find boardbags, books, backpacks, maps, and straps - all you need for your next trip.

TIP – Boat Trips surfing at Witchs Rock and Ollies Point. The park only allows 35 surfers in the park each day. Only certain boats have permits to enter the park, and every surfer must have a pass to be in the park which costs $15 per day. If someone from the park service checks the boat, and you have no permit, they kick you out – with no refunds. So make sure your boat captain has a permit and shows you the passes they bought for your trip.

Environment –  On November 5th, the Technical Secretariat of the Environment of Costa Rica (Setena) issued a resolution calling for the operation of Tuna Farms of Golfito to continue with its execution.  The project, which consists of the installation of 10 cages that will fatten up to 120 tons of tuna per cycle, was suspended by order of the Constitutional Court on May 9th, 2007, due to the serious inconsistencies found regarding the threat of polluting the delicate ecosystem of the Golfo Dulce, and the impact on sea turtles.  Setena had declared that the project was environmentally viable since August 19, 2005. There had been no study to determine the direction of the wastes from the tuna farms, nor data about how it would affect migrating whales and turtles.

Contests – The C.R. Federation of Surf announced their 2008-2009 surf contest calendar. Here are the dates and locations that have been chosen:

November 28, 29, 30 - Playa Hermosa
December 12, 13, 14 - Tamarindo
January 9, 10, 11 - Jaco
February 6, 7, 8 - Nosara (Playa Guiones)
March 6, 7, 8 – Santa Teresa
May 1, 2, 3 - Playa Hermosa (Finals)

Don’t forget that the Billabong ISA World Surfing Games will be taking place in Playa Hermosa, Costa Rica from July 29th to August 8th. The best surfers from over 50 countries will arrive to compete for medals and national pride. Rooms and transportation options are expected to be in high demand, so make your reservation early with us – check the site at  - or email

E-mail Inquiry – Q:  I’ve seen on many sites that December is a good month to surf, but a couple of guys have told me that it isn’t. What do you think?

A: It depends on what size waves you want. The chances are it will be smaller than in the summer since the Southern Pacific swells are less powerful. That is why certain surf breaks are better to stay at, in case you are there when the surf is smaller. Dominical, for example, I've only seen less than chest high a few days a year. But in Pavones, it can be knee to waist high for weeks. It's more consistent in places like Tulin and Playa Negra. Tides are also a factor, it can be knee high at low tide and head high with the tide pushing in. And not to forget, the Caribbean side is a LOT more consistent during December. Salsa Brava in Puerto Viejo is just one of a few reef breaks on the East side of the country, plus there are beach breaks, too. That's why I do the forecast for surf travelers, to better help you plan your trip. The next report will be number 460.






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