The Surfer's Guide to Costa Rica - Playa Langosta
Playa Langosta de Tamarindo, Costa Rica

There are two sides to Playa Langosta rivermouth,
literally and figuratively. On the north side you have the
lava rock reef breaks in the ocean and overbuilt Costa
Rica tourism bad dream on the land. On the south side
there are the sandy beach breaks with good old rural
Costa Rica on land. Both sides have good surf.

On the north side of the Playa Langosta rivermouth are
rights and lefts breaking inside and outside. When it gets
big it breaks way outside and gets scary for beginners or
weak swimmers, but the outside reef is the gem the
regulars seek. With the lava reef Langosta gets sketchy
on lower tides. Mid-tide is best, depending on the swell. It’
s a personal thing, because my brother Roger loves the
place, as do others. It’s been getting more crowded
lately, but not as crowded as Tamarindo. Maybe the
occasional crocodile spotted in the line-up helps.
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Across the river are the Langosta beach breaks, including the right called La Piedra del Zapo. Really fun on
upcoming tide, and better with swells coming more out of the west. While these are beach breaks you still
need to watch out for rocks and reef. The Langosta beach breaks can be hollow, fast and grinding with
stand-up tubes, so it’s not for beginners.

Alas, Langosta ain’t what it used to be. There are now hotels, bed and breakfasts and condos right there—
including the disgusting Barceló, a monstrosity built by a Spanish hotel corporation that, if left to its own will
destroy every beach in the world. What was once one of the greatest rivermouth beaches anywhere is now
just a big, sandy playground for pasty tourists. It sucks.

Getting There: 2-3km south of Tamarindo. It’s a long walk around the point at the south end of Tamarindo
Bay, or a short drive out of town, although “town” is closer than ever to Langosta. By car, head toward then
past the Cala Luna and Villa Allegre until you see the public beach sign (Sol y Playa) which is now the
official Langosta parking lot. If you keep going, please just plow your car into the Barceló Hotel lobby.

Excerpted from The Surfer's Guide to Costa Rica & SW Nicaragua, available at
©1996-2012 SurfPress Publishing. All rights reserved.