North Pacific Coast: Places to Explore


Bahía Salinas

The large windswept bay at the very top of Costa Rica's Pacific coast is the second-windiest area in the country, after Lake Arenal, making it a mecca for windsurfers and kitesurfers, as well as beachgoers looking for breezy, uncrowded, pristine beaches. Strong breezes blow from November to May, when only experienced surfers are out on the water and the water grows steadily cooler. The south (bay) side has the strongest winds, and choppy, colder water from January to May.

In July and August the wind is more appropriate for beginners, whereas any time of year you can enjoy the area's diving and beaches. On the sheltered Golfo de Santa Elena, to the west, are two beaches that rank among the most beautiful in all of Costa Rica: Playa Rajada and Playa Jobo, a far cry from the overdeveloped beaches of Guanacaste's gold coast farther to the south.

Bahía Salinas at a Glance

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