Surfing the Matapalo // Osa Peninsula //- A Guide

Surfing the Osa Costa Rica

The Osa peninsula is known for many things, and among them, some world class waves. Whether you’re an experienced surfer or a beginner wanting to learn, you will find just what you need in the Osa.

Note that all the surf spots in Matapalo are point breaks.

Aaron surfing pan dulce Blue Osa Costa Rica

 Surfing the Osa

Pandulce 1

Location: Cabo Mata Palo. Drive past the little jungle bar of Martinas, cross the river and take the first left into the road that takes to Cabo Matapalo. Pass casa Bambu, Casa Pina and Casa Dulce on your left and then turn left on a little road that will take you to a tiny parking lot.

Difficulty level: easy. This is a forgiving wave, a long one and the best one to learn surfing on.

Wave direction: Right

Barrels?  Yes, usually smaller ones.

Best part about it: this spot has a fun right wave with a good speed which can make for fun sessions.

Good to surf during: low tide

Watch out for:  When you go in at low tide you will need to walk on some flat rock as you enter the water, which can be a bit slippery.

Pandulce 2 (Manzanillo or Pan Dulce Arriba)

Location: Cabo Mata Palo. This spot is still Pan Dulce, but a bit further down on the Matapalo road. You can enter from a few different points. You can get to it by walking on a little trail from PanDulce 1 at low tide on your right. You can also go from the Encanta la Vida yoga deck and then take a right on the trail. You’ll see a few benches.

Difficulty level: intermediate

Wave direction: Right

Barrels? yes

Best part about it: all the waves here are great

Good to surf during: When there’s a big swell you can surf both tides, the high and low, but when the waves are small you want to surf at high

Watch out for: rocks

Surfing the Osa Costa Rica

Backwash

Location: Cabo Mata Palo. Once again take the main Matapalo road and continue until you get to the Backwash parking lot right before a little river. If you passed a steep hill you’ve gone too far.

Difficulty Level: intermediate. For people who have already surfed.

Wave direction: Both rights and lefts

Barrels? yes

Best part about it: All the waves there are good, there’s a good drop and good sections for its airs and maneuvers!

Good to surf during: low tide

Watch out for: Water currents and rocks. The rocks that divide Backwash from PanDulce 2 are surrounded by strong currents, so make sure you don’t go in/get out from there.

Matapalo

Location: Cabo Mata Palo. Drive all the way to end of the Matapalo road. The beach will be right in front of you.

Difficulty Level: difficult. Experienced surfers only.

Wave direction: right

Barrels? yes. Good barrels

Best part about it: the drop

Good to surf during: low/medium tide

Watch out for: rocks underwater and currents during big swells that push towards the rocks. Go in front the right side, not from dead center.

Sunset Watch Matapalo Costa Rica
Photo Credit: Jonathan Hokklo

This beach below is NOT located in Cabo Matapalo, but rather in the surrounding area and off the main road that leads from Puerto Jimenez to Matapalo.

 Germany Beach

Location: playa sombrero, right in front of Boca Sombrero. It’s a beach break.

Difficulty level: easy wave

Wave direction: both lefts and rights

Barrels? yes, small ones

Best part about it: it’s a short break, close to the beach. good sessions for barrels

Good to surf during: high tide

Watch out for: rocks

2 thoughts on “Surfing the Matapalo // Osa Peninsula //- A Guide

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