Samara is a laid-back beach town perched on the Nicoya Peninsula that offers a taste of Costa Rica's rich biodiversity, along with trendy taquerias and alfresco restaurants. You can bask on sun-drenched beaches, watch breaching humpback whales and discover wildlife-rich nature reserves.
Things to do in Sámara
Playa Samara is laced by a crescent-shaped stretch of volcanic sand and hemmed in by rocky headlands. Sunbathe or cool off in the sparkling Pacific Ocean. Adventurous travellers can rent a 4WD and explore hidden beaches like Playas Barrigona and Buenavista.
Ocean safaris whisk you out to the Pacific Ocean and get you up close to bottlenose and spotted dolphins, as well as humpback whales. On ocean kayaking expeditions to Chora Island you can stroll along deserted beaches, snorkel with tropical fish and swim in the crystalline water.
Discover Costa Rica's incredible biodiversity at the Werner Sauter Biological Reserve. It's criss-crossed with self-guided trails through tropical forest and mango plantations. Other popular activities include stand-up paddleboarding tours through the mangrove forests and turtle encounters at nearby beaches like Camaronal, Corozalito and Ostional.
For the best tacos in town, head to Lo Que Hay, a beachside eatery serving tortillas filled with fish, chicken, chorizo, pork, beef and veggies. Vegetarians swoon over the pico de gallo-stuffed grilled avocados. Bite into gooey cinnamon buns at Roots Bakery or stock up on farm-fresh produce and artisan goods at Samara Organics.
Getting around Sámara
Samara is easily navigable on foot or by using a rental bicycle. The town is easy to access by public transportation, with local buses running to Nicoya in one-hour. Renting a 4WD offers the freedom to explore Samara's off-the-beaten-track beaches.