The Best of Santa Teresa

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Santa Teresa, Costa Rica, sunset at the 'rock'.
When is the best time to visit, where to eat, what are the best places to stay, or, best things to do while visiting Santa Teresa?

Sarah Treadaway, Travel Consultant, answers your burning questions on everything Santa Teresa

Why Visit Santa Teresa?

Santa Teresa offers a laid back atmosphere with some of the most beautiful beaches in Costa Rica. It’s the perfect place for anyone looking to take full advantage of the beach, surfing, sunsets, yoga, and amazing restaurants.

From exceptional, not-to-be missed properties and bucket-list experiences, here are our favorite reasons to explore Santa Teresa:

Click on the link below to scroll you to the topic:

Best Time to Travel

Santa Teresa Weather

Is Santa Teresa Safe?

Top Restaurants in Santa Teresa

Things to Do

Where to Stay?

Best Time to Travel to Santa Teresa

Surfing, ATV tours, and horseback riding are year-round activities in Santa Teresa.

One of my favorite things about Santa Teresa is the sunsets. Whether it is summer or low season, you can be guaranteed beautiful sunsets. The sky lights up in bright colors and I try to never miss a sunset when I’m in Santa Teresa.
Psetel colors sunset on Santa Teresa beach in Costa Rica

From mid-December through April, Santa Teresa is very popular and crowded. Book early because of limited availability. Surfing is good year round but there are smaller waves in December-April being perfect for all types of surfers. Pricing is less expensive during the rainy season, from May through November.

Santa Teresa Weather


The temperature is stable year-round, in the high 80s to low 90s.

Favorite times to visit include Christmas and New Year’s weeks, and in January through March. The weather is sunniest in February.

From May through August, expect an afternoon thunderstorm for an hour or so. These are fun to watch from the comfort of your rental.

From September to November it gets much more rainy, but you can catch some of the most spectacular sunsets at this time of year.

Safety: Is Santa Teresa Safe?

Santa Teresa beach, Costa Rica

While Santa Teresa is generally safe, you should, as in all areas, take the normal precautionary measures against pick-pocketing, such as avoiding isolated areas and not wearing expensive jewelry. If you rent a car, keep it locked with the windows up anytime you leave it and park in well-lit areas.

Guide to Top Restaurants in Santa Teresa

Fine Dining & International Cuisine

Nami, Japanese, Seafood and Sushi

Sushi is my favorite food so I go to Nami every time I’m in Santa Teresa! Click here to view Nami.

Zula Restaurant, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern

Zula restaurant with cozy atmosphere, Santa Teresa, Costa Rica.

Mediterranean food with massive plates and good prices. This is also a nice option for vegans/vegetarians.

Katana Asian Cuisine, Bar, Sushi

Sushi at Katana, fine dining estaurant in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica

Another seafood restaurant with fresh fish and seafood. My favorite dish here is their poke bowl.

Casa del Mar, Steakhouse

Barbecued meats, barbecued pizzas, hamburgers, salads and special drinks

Koji’s, Japanese

Japanese restaurant that prides itself on its use of local fish and vegetables

Local Flavors: Diners (Called “Sodas”)

Soda Tiquicia

Gallo Pinto breakfast at Soda Tiquicia, Santa Teresa, Costa Rica

My favorite soda I have ever been to! My favorite place to go for breakfast in Santa Teresa. Very affordable Costa Rican food

Breakfast & Coffee

The Bakery, French, American

Breakfast at The Bakery in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica

One of the most popular restaurants in Santa Teresa. Open for breakfast lunch and dinner and serves a large variety of food options. Also a bakery with delicious baked goods

Earth Cafe, International, Healthy

Earth Cafe breakfast, Santa Teresa, Costa Rica

Healthy, fresh food with awesome options for breakfast. Also a nice place to hangout and drink coffee.

Quick Lunch

Pronto Italian Street Food, Tuscan, Romana

Italian food that is to-go friendly. I love picking up lunch here and taking it to the beach.

Taco Corner, Mexican, Street Food

One of my personal favorites. Tacos, burritos, poke bowls, fries, and delicious house-made sauces to go on it.

Burger Rancho, American

Awesome burgers, lots of variety and burger options.

Chop It, Healthy, Contemporary

Salads and burgers. I love going here for salads for lunch. So refreshing on a hot day at the beach.

Chicken Joe’s, Latin, Central American

Peruvian food really popular for Peruvian chicken, ceviche, and plates.

Happy Hour

Banana Beach Restaurant, Bar, Seafood

Awesome spot on the beach to hangout, have drinks, and snack on food. Chairs on beach for lounging

Tipsy, Wine Bar, French

Offering specially selected wines, cheese plates, spirits, and craft beers

Drift Bar, Vegetarian Vegan

Very cool concept, highly recommend. They make homemade cocktails that you can take to-go to the beach. Love going here for cocktails before sunset

Nativo Sports Bar, Pub

Fun place for beers, sports, and bar food.

Vegan, Vegetarian & Plant-based

Earth Cafe, Quick Bites, Healthy

Healthy, vegan, and vegetarian options.

Olam Pure Food, International, Healthy

Another health foods restaurant with vegan/vegetarian options

Experiences / Things to Do in Santa Teresa

Go Surfing!

I learned how to surf in Santa Teresa! There are tons of places where you can rent a board. I recommend renting a board for your entire stay in Santa Teresa and going for a surf at least once per day 🙂 If you are just starting, stay in the white water and enjoy consistent, fun, and playful white water that is perfect for people just starting out.

Sunset at Snata Teresa

Already know how to surf?

The beaches in Santa Teresa have beach breaks that provide consistent waves and world-class surfing. The most popular beaches in Santa Teresa for surfing include Playa Carmen, Playa Santa Teresa, La Lora Surf Spot, and Playa Hermosa.

Relax at the Beach!

Surfers beach - Santa Teresa, Costa Rica

I have been to a lot of beaches in Costa Rica, and Santa Teresa remains my favorite beach. The beautiful white sand beaches and warm pacific water, the mountain views, the unbeatable sunsets, and the bright blue water makes this my favorite beach. With multiple beaches to choose from, I never feel like the beaches are too crowded.

Take Day Trips

There is so much to explore in and around Santa Teresa. One of my favorite things to do while I’m in Santa Teresa is to rent an ATV and drive them to the Montezuma waterfall.

Traffic jam with cows on the countryside roads of Costa Rica

After a short hike, you can see one of the most impressive waterfalls in Costa Rica. After relaxing at the waterfall, stop for lunch in Montezuma and explore the nearby beaches and shops.

Montezuma Waterfal, Costa Rica

This is guaranteed to be quite the adventure. Other day trips I enjoy are to Mal Pais to snorkel at Playa Los Suecos, Hermosa beach to explore tide pools, and Cabo Blanco Natural Reserve.

Best Places to Stay

Nantipa–Tico Beach Experience

santa teresa hotel costa rica

Beachfront access, private bungalows, and modern comfort. What’s not to love? Inspired by Costa Rica’s native and traditional culture, the place is a haven of comfort for beach lovers.

Florblanca Beach Resort

santa teresa hotel costa rica

Nestled in the remote jungle of Santa Teresa—and just steps away from the beach—Florblanca Beach Resort is a luxury, boutique eco-hotel. Florblanca is a great option for couples, families with older children, retreat groups, and anyone searching for a tranquil escape from the everyday hustle.

Get a (Beachfront) Rental

santa teresa rental costa rica

If you want more privacy, a rental is always a great option. At Costa Rican vacations, we have several villas available for rent in Santa Teresa.

Sarah Treadaway Sarah Threadaway is our Santa Ana-based Travel Consultant.