For the last two weeks of our stay in Costa Rica we are living in a house up on a hill. For the first time since we have been here, we have to drive (vs walk) to the beach. As a result, we kept our rental car, and we have a couple of different options when we go to the beach. Here is a quick overview of the beaches we have explored so far:
- Playa Domincalito: This lovely beach is just south of Playa Dominical, but it feels much less touristy and more natural. The waves are also a bit smaller, as it is a somewhat protected cove. We went there one morning last week before school/work, and I really liked it. That said, even though the waves are not huge, they can pack a punch, so the girls didn’t love it as a swimming beach.
2. Playa Linda On Friday morning we made our first family trip to the beach named for me, which is actually the closest beach to our house. The waves are similar to Dominical — meaning rather strong, and what Noah calls “close-out”, which makes them not so great for surfing. Sierra and I started off by taking a long walk along the beach — which was longer than intended, as we got to chatting (about equity vs. equality), then totally overshot our car and walked pretty far in the wrong direction before realizing we needed to turn around. When we finally made it back to Noah and Cassidy we were SO happy to get in the water and cool off. We had fun playing a family game of freeze tag in the shallow water — boy is it tiring to sprint on water and sand!!
Playa Linda is gorgeous, and totally undeveloped. It goes on for at least 2 miles in each direction I think, so is much longer and less rocky than either Dominical or Dominicalito. There was almost no one there on Friday morning, although Noah did say it was much more crowded when he went on Saturday afternoon. We have noted that Costa Ricans do head to the beach in droves on the weekends, and they tend to start early!
3. Playa Dominical: Dominical is a total surf beach/town, although Noah’s take (confirmed by some other surfers we met in Uvita), is that it really isn’t a great wave for surfing. I feel bad that he rented a board here but really hasn’t been able to use it much. Anyway, we went to Dominical for sunset on Friday and were really surprised at how crowed it was. Dominical definitely attracts a much more gringo crowd than Playa Linda, and I guess for this reason there are tons of vendors with stalls set up right by the beach — mostly selling sarongs, hats, and other cheap-o beachy stuff. It’s definitely not my favorite beach vibe, but the sunset was – as usual – spectacular!
4. Playa Uvita: Yes, if you’ve been paying attention to this blog, we actually spent the previous two weeks in Uvita, before we came here. But when we ‘lived’ there we would walk to Playa Colonia, a bit further south from Playa Uvita. We decided to drive back to Uvita yesterday (about a 30-minute drive), as Noah and Cassidy had not had a chance to walk out on the Whale Tail — a cool sand bar that is only accessible at low tide, and that (duh!) is in the shape of a whale’s tail.
We started with having breakfast at Vista Ballena – high up on the hill overlooking the Whale’s Tail.
Then we went down to the National Park to walk on the sand bar. It is absolutely gorgeous, though once again, we were surprised at how many Costa Rican tourists arrived – like us – just after 8am!
After walking the Whale’s Tail and a refreshing swim, we found a lovely spot of shade under the palm trees to play Hearts. We are so psyched that Cassidy has returned to the fold; after playing TONS of hearts on our last big family trip, she has been boycotting the game for some time now. But the last few weeks she’s back at it, and she really holds her own (though she still objects to keeping score)!