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Costa Rica watersports

Costa Rica Watersports To Try On Your Vacation

Costa Rica is a central American country that is covered in dense rainforest and flanked on either side by the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean. If you’re heading there, you’re probably looking for Costa Rica watersports to enjoy on your adventure.


As one of the world’s most stunningly beautiful countries, Costa Rica has an incredible amount of watersports to offer for visitors of all ages. 


If you are heading to Costa Rica, the likelihood is that you will definitely be partaking in some watersports, that’s the reason a lot of people go there.  There are so many beautiful sandy beaches, and deep blue seas that you can enjoy. 


There are some fantastic facilitators too such as Volcano Watersports Costa Rica who will make the experience special.  They will know exactly where to go and have the best equipment.


Costa Rica also has the best conditions for all kinds of water activities with consistent waves. We have listed some of the most popular Costa Rica watersports here.

Costa Rica watersports

Costa Rica Watersports To Try 


Surfing is the quintessential Costa Rica watersport, it is what everyone thinks of when they picture an action-packed holiday by the sea. Thought to have originated in Peru around 5,000 years ago, surfing was later modernized and popularised in California, from where it spread and grew into the phenomenon it is today. 

Surfing involves using a board to ride on the surface of a moving ocean wave. It can be tricky to master at first but persevere and you will find the sport to be incredibly thrilling and rewarding.


Surfing can be relatively leisurely, with beginners often encouraged to focus on small, gentle waves. As you get more experienced, you can tackle larger waves, with some professional and highly experienced surfers able to ride the crests of truly mountainous columns of water.


Surfing is one of the most popular Costa Rica watersports, and it’s easy to understand why. The country is home to some fantastic beaches with conditions that are perfect for the sport. You will find that the ocean isn’t as crowded as it is in other places, and there are lots of swells, white sand beaches, and surf shops with top-of-the-line equipment and any accessories that you might need.  

One of the biggest factors that attract so many surfers to the beaches of Costa Rica is the remarkable consistency of the waves. This makes it a perfect destination for beginners and experienced swimmers alike and means that no matter where you are in your surfing journey, you can enjoy yourself.

Costa Rica watersports

Whitewater Rafting

Next on our list of Costa Rica watersports is whitewater rafting. Whitewater rafting involves riding in a small inflatable dinghy and navigating turbulent and often treacherous river waters.


The term whitewater comes from the appearance of the water itself, which is churning so rapidly that air gets trapped under the surface and makes the water look white and opaque. 


Costa Rica’s hilly and mountainous terrain is home to an intricate, interconnected network of rivers. These range from tranquil, expansive waterways to narrow, snaking rapids with sharp turns, steep drops, and undulating layouts.


This incredible topography is the reason why whitewater rafting is so popular in Costa Rica, with both visitors and locals regularly donning their wetsuits to pit themselves against the rapids. 


If you’re a thrill seeker who simply can’t get enough action, you’d be hard pushed to find something more perfect than a Costa Rican whitewater rafting expedition. You’ll get the chance to test your strength and endurance against the forces of nature all in some of the world’s most breathtaking surroundings.


The River Toro and the River Balsa are two of Costa Rica’s most popular whitewater rafting locations. There, you’ll get to see the incredible countryside while navigating these fantastic waterways. 

Costa Rica watersports

Scuba Diving and Snorkelling

While the sports and activities we’ve covered so far involve keeping yourself above the water, there’s a magical world to explore if you decide to take the plunge and dive beneath the surface. 


Snorkeling is another popular Costa Rica watersport and it doesn’t require you to fully immerse yourself in the water. Instead, you can swim along the surface with your head facing down and enjoy all the sights there are to see.


By using a diving mask and breathing apparatus, you can enjoy an unfettered view of the ocean floor without having to turn back to the surface and catch your breath. 


If you fancy diving a little deeper and truly exploring the underwater world, perhaps scuba diving would be more up your street. Scuba divers make use of tanks of oxygen and special breathing apparatus, this allows them to spend long periods of time, often up to an hour, completely submerged and with nothing tying or securing them to the surface.


If you’re eager to discover what secrets are lurking below the waves, maybe it’s time to get your flippers on and go for a scuba diving session. 


Costa Rica’s waters are home to some incredible wildlife that you’ll be able to see up close and personal when scuba diving. Dolphins, turtles, sharks, and more tropical fish than you can count are all common sights below the surface.


Exploring the many reefs dotted along the coastlines can give you a unique view of the country’s remarkable underwater ecosystems. 


For the truly adventurous, why not check out some of Costa Rica’s submerged shipwrecks? The Cahuita region of Costa Rica is home to the wreck of a 1700s Spanish galleon.


Dive down and visit this wreck to take a trip back in time, you’ll be able to admire this ancient structure and spot things like the ship’s cannons and weapons. 


Scuba Diving and Snorkeling are a little underrated for Costa Rica watersports, but in actual fact – this beautiful country has a lot to offer when it comes to that. 


You will be able to get a glorious view of the tropical fishes minutes after you get suited up at the reefs that you will find just offshore.  There is definitely a good few hours that can be enjoyed whilst snorkeling, and it’s also great exercise so you can burn off that tasty Costa Rican food.  

Costa Rica watersports


It might be that you don’t want anything over-adventurous and are a little more low-key when it comes to your enjoyment of Costa Rica watersports, in which case kayaking will be right up your street. Kayaking can be an incredibly rewarding and fulfilling experience, you’ll be able to take in Costa Rica’s stunning scenery at your own pace as you drift leisurely through its many waterways.


You don’t need to own your own kayak, there are various rental options available at affordable prices, with optional tuition packages to help you learn how to properly operate your kayak. 


For a truly breathtaking experience, you can go out when the sun is setting and be at peace with the ocean. Choose an evening when the wind is calm and the waters are still, this will allow you to relax and take things at your own speed, without any fear of falling into the water.

Costa Rica watersports


Costa Rica has so much to offer visitors and travelers. Costa Rica watersports available are second to none. It is one of the hottest destinations for fans of action and adventure. If you’re a watersports fan, there are few places more perfect than Costa Rica, use this guide and plan an incredible watersports adventure.

Christa Thompson

Christa Thompson is the Founder and Chief Editor of The Fairytale Traveler. She started traveling the world in 2003 when she attended a summer abroad study at the University of Cambridge in England. Since then, her wanderlust has been fierce. Her three passions in life are her son, traveling, and being creative. The Fairytale Traveler brand gives Christa the opportunity to do all of these things and to live intentionally every day. "It's never too late to believe in what you love and to pursue your dreams." -Christa Thompson

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