Let Playa Hermosa welcome you with her sparkling, calm waters and memorable sunsets. This jewel of Costa Rica offers plenty of choice in hotels and options and will relax you with its incredible ocean views.

With Daniel Oduber International Airport a mere 20 minutes away down a paved road, this beach is home to a thriving expat community. Although Hermosa has been somewhat built up to meet the needs of its residents and a steady stream of visitors, you will find only a handful of hotels here, a small movie theater, a few shops and several options for fine dining.

Planning a vacation to Playa Hermosa

When considering Playa Hermosa as a destination for your vacation, we recommend a stay of 3 – 5 days.  Any more than that will be taking too much time from other destinations, which you would undoubtedly regret. 

There are several hotels in Playa Hermosa.  The Hotel Playa Hermosa Bosque del Mar is a true beach front option that borders between boutique mid-range and lower end luxury.  Hotel La Finisterra is nice mid-range option with great ocean views and a nice restaurant.  The Hotel Mangaby is a good budget priced hotel that is located within walking distance to the beach.

There are plenty of activities available from Playa Hermosa.  The gentle waters make it the perfect spot to bring the kids and to practice a range of activities that include snorkeling, scuba diving, stand up paddle boarding, kayaking, swimming, and sport fishing. Canopy ziplining or horseback riding tours can be arranged here, as well as visits to Rincon de la Vieja, a must-see volcano located nearby.

Getting around Playa Hermosa is easy enough.  There are plenty of cabs and no matter where you are, you are usually within walking distance to a restaurant or the beach.

Reasons to go

  • It is conveniently located near Liberia Airport
  • It is a beautiful beach
  • Great fishing just in front of the bay
  • Calm waters for swimming
  • There is good shopping in nearby Playas del Coco
  • There is a great selection of restaurants

Reasons NOT to go

  • It is a dark sand beach (this actually does make a difference to some visitors)
  • No surfing nearby
  • No nightlife in town (though there is in neighboring Playa del Coco)

How to get there

From San Jose: Take the Autopista del Sol or the Interamerican Highway to Caldera and turn left after Puntarenas, following the signs to the Friendship Bridge (Puente de la Amistad in Spanish). Cross the bridge and follow the road signs to Liberia. Take a left at the main intersection there, turning towards Santa Cruz and driving south past the Liberia airport. You will arrive at an enormous hardware store called Do-It-Center and turn right, pass a medical center and then turn left. Follow the road signs to Playa Panama and once you arrive, turn left to Hermosa. Driving time from San Jose is around four hours.

Weather and packing list

Even during the worst of the rainy season in the months of September and October, you will most likely get a good dose of sunshine at this paradisiacal beach. Temperatures are fairly steady year round, hovering between the upper 80s and lower 90s during the day, and dropping to the upper 70s at night. It’s unlikely to get much rain here during the dry season, which runs from November to August

When working on your packing list, don’t forget to include a swimsuit, flip flops, a towel or sarong for the beach, a hat, shorts, t-shirts, some rain gear and plenty of sunblock and aloe vera gel to soothe any stinging sunburns. 

Fun Fact: There are several Playa Hermosas in Costa Rica. If you were looking for a popular surfing destination by the name of Playa Hermosa check out Playa Hermosa de Jaco.


Latitude: N 10° 34' 17.78"
Longitude: W 85° 40' 51.29"

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