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  1. #11
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Lewes, DE
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    If you don't know Spanish, I honestly wouldn't recommend you go to Central America by yourself as a 18/19 year old. I do also agree Costa Rica is a great first surf trip, but find someone else to go with. If you know spanish, you are a little better off, but lots of stuff can go wrong when you travel and there are plenty of idiots looking to take advantage of people. Just a bit of caution.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Long Island, NY
    Posts
    16
    If you head to Jaco and Hermosa, almost everyone speaks English. Yeah, there's a lot of closeout barrels when it gets big, but for a first time trip, it's warm water, waves, and lots of American help.

  3. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by havanasand View Post
    Ollie's Point ... I can only imagine what it would look like now. Have fun.
    I took a boat out of tamarindo to ollie's once and it was a total sh*t show. 2009. I could count 7 boats, 3 jet skis, and at least 40 surfers. Two guys on our boat started to get all stoked and get their stuff together but the captain said "No, I have better spot" and he took us to a nearby cove where we got barreled out of our brains all day. Our captain earned his $ that day too... I forget his name but he runs a 25' blue center console right out of the tamarindo rivermouth where they also launch the tour boats into the river. Just ask for the surf tours. That guy knows his sh*t. He says the cove we surfed only breaks about once a month.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    VB via PR and HI
    Posts
    231
    Quote Originally Posted by leethestud View Post
    I took a boat out of tamarindo to ollie's once and it was a total sh*t show. 2009. I could count 7 boats, 3 jet skis, and at least 40 surfers. Two guys on our boat started to get all stoked and get their stuff together but the captain said "No, I have better spot" and he took us to a nearby cove where we got barreled out of our brains all day. Our captain earned his $ that day too... I forget his name but he runs a 25' blue center console right out of the tamarindo rivermouth where they also launch the tour boats into the river. Just ask for the surf tours. That guy knows his sh*t. He says the cove we surfed only breaks about once a month.
    Pretty confident I know the wave you speak of (L's?) We surfed it about HH maybe bigger on the sets right in front of a cliff. Super sketchy if you ask me because I was on it backside. Half the people who surfed Ollies stayed on the boat to watch. I think I caught 3 waves and ended up closer to one of the rocks inside than I wanted to be. If you were getting barreled at that wave it must have been all time and a trip to remember.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Virginia Beach
    Posts
    855
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    Puerto Rico is always a good pick for price and waves this time of year, CR is definitely great, Nicaragua, El Salvador, and whoever said boat trip is right on the money

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Monmouth Beach, NJ
    Posts
    2,310
    Boat trip...

    No haggling, no worries... you don't even have to think. You're just along for the ride. And you'll surf your brains out.

  7. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by leethestud View Post
    I took a boat out of tamarindo to ollie's once and it was a total sh*t show. 2009. I could count 7 boats, 3 jet skis, and at least 40 surfers. Two guys on our boat started to get all stoked and get their stuff together but the captain said "No, I have better spot" and he took us to a nearby cove where we got barreled out of our brains all day. Our captain earned his $ that day too... I forget his name but he runs a 25' blue center console right out of the tamarindo rivermouth where they also launch the tour boats into the river. Just ask for the surf tours. That guy knows his sh*t. He says the cove we surfed only breaks about once a month.
    Yo, had the exact same experience fairly recently (and a tad smaller so no barrels). I literally surfed until I couldn't walk up a set of stairs when we got home, either from dehydration, exhaustion or from losing blood through the gash in my toe (or all of the above).

    Anyway, back to the OP's question. I definitely say Costa Rica, but I second the warning that you want to learn some Spanish. Here's what I would do: find a Spanish school near a good break. I remember seeing a tiny little place that gives lessons in Dominical. Spend a month or so taking a lesson or two a day and surfing. Gives you a good home base to work with, a chance to meet locals and feel comfortable.


    I think this is the place. They even offer homestays, which is THE way to learn a language.

    http://www.adventurespanishschool.co...icalcampus.php


    I did a similar trip to this when I was younger, taking 2 months of one-on-one lessons in Ecuador ($15 a day - amazing) and then taking to the road when I felt more comfortable. The plan worked well. Good luck.

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Kenai Peninsula, Alaska
    Posts
    469
    Quote Originally Posted by ragdolling View Post
    Anyway, back to the OP's question. I definitely say Costa Rica, but I second the warning that you want to learn some Spanish. Here's what I would do: find a Spanish school near a good break. I remember seeing a tiny little place that gives lessons in Dominical. Spend a month or so taking a lesson or two a day and surfing. Gives you a good home base to work with, a chance to meet locals and feel comfortable.
    I agree with the learning Spanish angle but if you want to avoid the CR crowds, try Guatemala. I found a cool language school in Quetzaltenango (aka Xela) and decent surf in Champerico, among other spots...

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    New York
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    I kindly disagree with the mates above. I would say go to Mexico, Puerto Vallarta. Everybody speaks english out there. Its very safe, for $1100.00 you can get a flight and all inclusive hotel. Rent a car for about $60 bucks a day. There are point breaks up and down the coast. I got it wired down there. You can PM me and I will hook you up with my Homiez down there. You wont have to worry about a thing. Just be ready to pay $150. for your board bag.

  10. #20
    I`ll say Costa Rica, buses are cheap and you can get anywhere in the country... There are some great hostels in many different beaches and you´ll make friend in NO TIME!!! Santa Teresa is a great option, fantastic beach break, nice girls, good party, lots of restaurants, the Pura Vida way of life... A hostel will charge between 10 to 20 US dollars a day and you will find girls and friends quick... We maybe a third world country, but we have everything you have in the states, one of the best medical services in Latin Amarica, aaaa and it´s free for all who need it. Warm water all year round, solid waves all year round, cold beer all year round... What more can you ask for??? Enjoy Santa Teresa :-)

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