Plan your culinary exploits as you explore the stunning area and experience the restaurants in Tamarindo, Costa Rica’s hub of beach-side active vacations
Costa Rica’s most revered beach destination is on most visitor’s tour itinerary and it’s not hard to see why that would be. Superbly located just an hour south of the Liberia International Airport, the town sits on some of the best surfing beaches in the country, with prominent turtle nesting sites nearby and the prized Las Baulas National Marine Park on its doorstep. With volcanoes-filled national parks just a stone-throw away – prime sites for hiking and zip lining – the town makes a fabulous base for all sorts of Costa Rica active vacation experiences. To complete the delectable picture, Tamarindo also offers a bevy of gastronomic experiences, thanks to its central location and popularity. From casual fare in chilled-out cafés to sumptuous sunset dinners in the town’s most revered high-end restaurants, Tamarindo offers a plentitude of delightful culinary delights.
Best Restaurants in Tamarindo for a Casual Meal
Whether you’re up for a leisurely breakfast or a short-and-sweet lunch-break between excursions, you’ll find a wide array of casual eateries in Tamarindo that offer great fare at reasonable prices with super-swift service.
Here are three of our favorites:
Genially found right on the main drag in between surf shops, Sprout offers exceptionally fresh fare and a chilled-out beach-vibe to match. Loads of fresh sandwiches and an array of salads will satisfy health-foodies whilst enough of the naughty stuff (fried calamari, pork sliders, jalapeno quesadillas and hand-cut chips) ought to convince those craving a splurge to stop in and have a feast. With a happy hour that lasts for 3 (3-6pm) and flowing cocktails, this place is a gem at any time of day.
Little Lucha Taqueria
Lucha’s been a Tamarindo favorite since, it would seem, time immemorial and we’re quite sure that just a bite of their revered tacos will also make it yours. Yes, tacos! Lots and lots of them of a thousand different kinds!
From seafood to meat and a host of vegetarian options, Little Lucha is the one Tex-Mex place that never disappoints. Head here for Taco Tuesday specials and gorge with abandon.
If you’re looking for a daily fave, a place you can just roll in to of an early morning for a wicked cup of organic coffee and a healthy, revitalizing breakfast, then La Bodega is the place for you.
Here, you can dunk your toasted banana bread in your coffee or start the day Tico-style, with a giant plate of gallo pinto. Fabulous breakfast sandwiches and fresh juices are just the thing for a light snack. Street-front tables are great for people watching and the friendliness of the staff is one of the most commendable bonuses and, in case you’re wondering, there are even healthy sweet-treats to boot.
Best Restaurants in Tamarindo for a Special Dinner
Sunsets in Tamarindo are spectacular and what better way to enjoy a special dinner than enjoying the view and a fabulous meal in a gorgeous place? For romantic nights and some up-market atmosphere, there are some truly special dinners to be had in Tamarindo.
Here are just three to try on your next visit:
Langosta Beach Club
Langosta is south of the main drag, which gives its seaside restaurant a much more intimate (and quieter) ambience. Perfect for a romantic sunset dinner.
Make a day of it by enjoying the beach club facilities and stay until the sun dips beyond the horizon to enjoy great sushi and fresh seafood fare that’s caught daily. The burgers are excellent too! The ever-changing menu makes the Langosta Beach Club a wonderful place to return to during your stay and you’ll find a bevy of cocktails and beers on ice just waiting for you to arrive.
The great all-rounder, this ocean-front delight is open from 7am to late evening, offering delicious seaside brekkies and stunning sunset dinners, with lots of delicious morsels and drinks in-between. At sunset, grab a front-row table and let your toes sink into the still-warm sand and see which freshly-caught fish is on the menu for the day. Yummy cocktails and excellent food make El Chiringuito a stellar choice.
Diria Hotel Restaurant
OK, we’re totally biased here – with Diria being one of our favored Tamarindo hotels – but there’s a reason we honed in on it in the first place. This glorious family-friendly luxury hotel is a corner of paradise in Tamarindo, framed by prime wilderness and offering a cozy and private escape in the country’s foremost beach destination.
Beautifully shaded by enormous palm and fruit trees, the ocean-front restaurant is just the thing on a hot Costa Rican day. The gastronomic delights at its FIVE restaurants is excellent, as are the refreshments offered in its four bars. For an exceptional dining experience, book a table at the Diria’s Matapalo Restaurant – the hotel’s ‘showpiece’ – and enjoy the priceless view with your exquisite meal. The home-made ceviche is heavenly and a must-try.
Tamarindo is a prime spot for active vacations in Costa Rica and makes for a wonderful base to explore the Guanacaste region. Check out our Tamarindo Guide to discover all the highlights on offer in this marvelous hub of fun, surf and magical sea. At Costa Rica Rios, we love showing off this unique corner of the country and organize active vacation itineraries for honeymooning couples, families or anyone who’s up for an exhilarating time. Visit our Costa Rica Adventure Vacations page and contact us for more info.