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6 Best Surf Camps in Costa Rica

‍At Barefoot Surf Travel, we believe the best surf trip for beginners and intermediates is a combination of a high-quality surf coaching program, mixed with an authentic travel experience. Since our Surf Trip Calendar has specific dates based on the best seasons for waves and weather, some people’s schedules lack flexibility and are unable to attend. Often these people contact us to know if we could recommend another surf travel company or surf camp when they can’t match their vacations with any of our trips.

Here are some of our recommendations for a surf camp experience in Costa Rica.

1. Surf Simply

Surf Simply Costa Rica

“Teach a man to fish, rather than give him a fish.”

This is the simple approach to Surf Simply’s surf program. The expert coaches share an obvious goal: for you to take the skills you gain to progress your surfing beyond the program. Theory lessons, video analysis and surf photos aid in this process, giving you the highest quality curriculum.

  • Type: All-inclusive
  • Program Length: 1 or 2 weeks
  • Program Size: 12 people
  • Where: Nosara
  • Price: $$$$
  • Meals Included: Yes, but Wednesday’s lunch & dinner is on you.
  • Girl’s Only: No
  • What’s Included: Accommodation, Airport Transfers, Surf Coaching, Stretch Classes, Meals, One Massage, Surf Videos & Photos of your progress, Bicycles, all Surf Equipment, & One “Off-day” Activity of your choice: Ziplining, Stand Up Paddleboarding, Horseback riding, and more!
  • What’s Not Included: Airfare & Wednesday’s lunch & dinner.
  • Pros: Pretty much everything is curated to keep you at maximum comfort throughout the week(s).
  • Cons: Plan ahead – this popular program fills up to 10 months in advance!
  • More on TripAdvisor!
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2. Lucero Surf Retreat

lucero surf retreat costa rica

Lucero Surf Retreat is a camp created by a family of four – two of which are only the ages of 4 and 7. They’re the type of camp you know comes from direct passion. The couple met while backpacking in Costa Rica and later made the lifestyle their reality. The program has 3 separate options: Surf Package, Surf & Yoga Package or a Family Package.

  • Type: Partly-inclusive
  • Program Length: 1 Week – 7 Days, 6 Nights
  • Program Size: 8-10 People
  • Where: Santa Teresa
  • Price: $$
  • Meals Included: Breakfasts & Lunches (except Sunday), Friday Night Dinner
  • Girl’s Only: No
  • What’s Included: Accommodation, Breakfasts & Lunches, 6 Surf Lessons, Surf Theory Classes, All Surf Equipment, Surf Photos, 4 Yoga Sessions* ATV to a waterfall adventure!*Surf & Yoga Package only
  • What’s Not included: Airfare, Dinners, Airport transfers, Extra Activities, Gratuity
  • Pros: Relaxed in all the right ways – no pressure to do anything you don’t want to. Family options & freedom to explore independently.
  • Cons: A bit complicated to get to – after landing in San Jose, you have the option of bus, daily shuttle or private shuttle to a ferry (4 hours total travel time); or a charter flight from San Jose to Tambor and then a taxi to your location.
  • More on TripAdvisor!

3. Blue Surf Sanctuary

blue surf sanctuary costa rica

Blue Surf Sanctuary has beautiful bungalows for the ultimate tropical experience. This is a great package for someone who wants to learn to surf as well as experience other activities and cultures during their stay.

  • Type: Partly-inclusive
  • Program Length: 1 Week – 7 Days, 7 Nights
  • Program Size: 3:1 Surf Coach Ratio
  • Where: Santa Teresa
  • Price: $$
  • Meals Included: Breakfasts
  • Girl’s Only: Option for a Girl’s Only Camp
  • What’s Included: Accommodation, Breakfasts, Airport Transfer, 1 Daily Surf Lesson, Use of Surf Equipment, Billabong rashguard, t-shirt & goody bag, 1 (to 2*) Daily Surf Lesson, 1 Full Body Massage**, Yoga Sessions**, Quad to Montezuma Waterfalls & Canopy Zip-line Tour****Intense Surf Package Only** Full Experience and Surf & Yoga Retreat Packages Only*** Full Experience Package Only
  • What’s Not included: Airfare, Lunches & Dinners
  • Pros: Package options, AC, hot water, daily housekeeping, WiFi
  • Cons: The location is next to what can be a noisy road – if you’re looking for a tranquil experience, there might be a better option for you.
  • More on TripAdvisor!

4. Shaka Costa Rica

shaka costa rica

Shaka Beach Retreat Costa Rica is a clean & modern camp and is the definition of simplicity. With personally tailored surf lessons, you’ll find yourself progressing rapidly. Shaka believes in quality – not quantity. This means you’ll be in groups based on your level and a 3:1 student to coach ratio for maximum progression.

  • Type: Partly-inclusive
  • Program Length: 5 or 7 Night Packages
  • Program Size: Average of 6-8 guests
  • Where: Santa Teresa
  • Price: $$
  • Meals Included: Sunrise snack, brunch, and dinner (except Saturday dinner) – unlimited water & fruit
  • Girl’s Only: No
  • What’s Included: Accommodation with Private Bath, Snacks, Brunches, Dinners, Daily Surf Lessons, Daily Yoga, Surf Equipment Use, Snorkel Use, Beach Towels, A/C, Wifi, How water, Laundry Service
  • What’s Not Included: Airfare, airport transfers, Saturday dinner
  • Pros: Surf Coach Awards, privacy, provided filtered water
  • Cons: Some reviews on TripAdvisor said the rooms were very basic – from the photos, they seem clean, modern & basic in what we think is appealing – it’s all up to your personal preference! Not beachfront views, but includes the ocean sounds.
  • More on TripAdvisor!

5. Safari Surf School

safarisurf school costa rica

Safari Surf School has an abundance of package options. This surf school is bound to leave you satisfied. Choose from one of the curated packages or design your own. This program is unique because a percentage of all their proceeds go to a local non-profit – Refuge for Wildlife. Enjoy your vacation, learn to surf all while helping the local community!

  • Type: All-Inclusive
  • Program Length: 7 Nights
  • Program Size: Varies
  • Where: Nosara
  • Price: $$$$
  • Meals Included: Morning snack, breakfasts, 3 dinners
  • Girl’s Only: No
  • What’s Included: Accommodation, Airport Transfer, Daily Bike Rental, Morning Snack, Breakfasts, 3 Dinners, 2 Daily Surf Lessons, Surf Equipment Use, Surf Theory/Video Review Session, Surf Photos, Refuge for Wildlife tour, Choice of 2 Activities: Daily Yoga, Massage, Ziplining, Horseback tour, Kayak tour, Stand Up Paddleboard tour, Snorkeling tour, Waterfall hike. A/C, Wifi, How water, Laundry Service
  • What’s Not included: Airfare, 4 dinners
  • Pros: Surf Video Analysis, ISA Level 1 or 2 Surf Coaches & all certified lifeguards, part of the proceeds go to local non-profit (Refuge for Wildlife), ability to customize your own travel package
  • Cons: Overwhelming amount of options to some.
  • More on TripAdvisor

6. Corky Carroll’s Surf School

corky carrolls costa rica

If you’re looking to feel apart of a family, Corky Carroll’s is the place for you. This family-run business eliminates any possibilities of stress and includes quality everything – 2 daily surf lessons (1 private (rare!) and one with a group) to 3 meals a day, it will be difficult to find the tiniest thing wrong with your stay!

  • Type: All-Inclusive
  • Program Length: 7 Nights
  • Program Size: Varies
  • Where: Nosara
  • Price: $$$
  • Meals Included: 3 Meals/Day
  • Girl’s Only: No
  • What’s Included: Accommodation, Airport Transfers, Private Bath, Hot Water, US Standard outlets, Lagoon-style pool, Airport Transfer, Daily Bike Rental, Morning Snack, Breakfasts, 3 Dinners, Cold Beer, WiFi, Poolside Palapa, 1 Private Daily Surf Lesson, 1 Daily Group Lesson, Surf Equipment Use, Video Analysis Review Sessions,  Weekly Laundry Service
  • What’s Not Included: Airfare
  • Pros: Family-run business giving you an “apart of the family” vibe, relaxing atmosphere.
  • Cons: No A/C.
  • More on TripAdvisor!

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