Playa Tamarindo

Globe trotters discovered Playa Tamarindo some time ago, and since then the beach and its fishing village have become increasingly popular and crowded, especially during the peak season. Accommodations are available in all price ranges, but it is best to reserve ahead if planning a trip during the dry season. Playa Tamarindo is known for its gray sand and gravel beach. It has deep water and magnificent tamarind trees that grow along the shore.

The pulpy fruit of the tamarind is found in its long pods and is somewhat of an acquired taste. Ticos call the fruit pulpa and love its sweet-sour taste. They eat the fruit’s pulp sprinkled with a bit of sugar. They also make drinks, fruit syrup, candy and even spicy sauces (Worcestershire Sauce contains tamarind) from pulpa. The tamarind is also known for its laxative properties and is often eaten or avoided for this reason. Its young leaves and green pods can also be cooked and served as vegetables. Even the seeds are edible, and they are also used in the textile industry.

The Playa Tamarindo is also known, but less loved, for its stinging sandflies. In the evening, when the sun goes down, they can be especially nasty. Swimmers should be warned there are dangerous currents, undertows and barely visible rocks just below the surface. Windsurfers and surfers farad the Playa Tamarindo a paradise. There are three perfect “breaks,” in surfers’ language these are locations that guarantee the thrill that surfers travel half way around the world to experience. These are at Henry’s Point, Pico Pequeno and at the mouth of the river. Other good spots for surfing are the beaches to the south, reachable by boat, Playa Negra, Playa Avella and Playa Langosta. But environmentalists ask surfers to be careful not to collide with the protected species of turtle found at these beaches.

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