So, you’ve been invited to a destination wedding in Tamarindo – congratulations! We promise, it’s going to be a memorable trip. Tamarindo (and its surrounds) is one of Costa Rica’s most popular destinations, thanks in large part to our beautiful beaches, adventurous activities, and spectacular sunsets.
You’ve heard plenty about Costa Rica, you’ve probably dreamed of visiting (or already have), and now your invitation has finally arrived – you’re invited to a destination wedding in Tamarindo. Go ahead, you can squeal. This is something to get excited about! #TamarindoDestinationWedding #BestWeddingEver
After you get over your initial excitement, you probably start to wonder: Where is Tamarindo, exactly? What’s the weather going to be like? Where will you stay? How much should you budget?
One thing you already know, though: this wedding-vacation is going to be epic.
Destination Wedding in Tamarindo: The When, Where & What
Let’s start with the total basics, so we can get situated:
When: Obviously, the specific when is up to the nuptial couple, but we can help you understand what to expect from your when. To begin, Tamarindo averages 75-95º F (23-35º C) and gets a consistent 12-13 hours of sunlight, year-round; the sun’s up around 5:30 and sets just after 6, almost every day. And, there are two basic seasons: dry season (December-April) and wet season (a.k.a. green season, May-November). If you’d like to know more, check out our guide to Costa Rican weather.
Where: Tamarindo is located on Costa Rica’s north-Pacific coast, about 75 minutes southwest of the Liberia International Airport (LIR). If you want to get super technical about it, Tamarindo is located at coordinates 10.2993° N, 85.8371° W. That said, “Tamarindo” is often a catch-phrase for a much larger area, including Playa Langosta, Playa Grande, Hacienda Pinilla, and even, sometimes, Playa Flamingo.
What: Tamarindo curves from Playa Grande down to Playa Langosta, forming a compact little beach town that measures less than a mile from north to south – great for walking or banana biking! Nearby, you’ll also find dry forest, wet forest, and even desert-like savannah landscapes, making for a diverse ecosystem home to incredible plant and animal life.
There’s a reason the happy couple chose to hold their destination wedding in Tamarindo. Once a funky fishing town, today Tamarindo is a mini beach metropolis that lives by the de facto motto of “surf, eat, and have fun.” And we’re 100% committed to all three! Indeed, our surf is epic (and there are so very many surf spots, both popular and secluded – see below!), our bar and restaurant scene is one of the best in Costa Rica, and we’re basically professionals at having fun.
So, what kind of fun? Truly, there’s an amazing variety of things to see and do here: there’s a ton to do here: surfing, SUP, canopy zip-lining, yoga, catamaran sailing, turtle nesting, snorkeling & scuba diving, wildlife & nature tours, sports fishing, swimming, golf, and much more. (More on that, below.)
EASY BUTTON!! Don’t want to mess around with logistics (or group bookings)? We’ll do it for you! From activities and transportation, to spa treatments and chef services, we’ll take care of everything before you arrive, so you don’t spend your vacation… well, planning your vacation. If you’d like any help, our in-house concierge, Cristina (send her an email), can recommend perfect activities for you and your friends and family – and book them on your behalf, absolutely free!
Where to Stay: The Best Vacation Rentals for Destination Wedding Guests
One of the best aspects of attending a destination wedding in Tamarindo is vacationing with some of your nearest and dearest. And, what better way to do that than by going in on a luxury vacation rental together?
Tamarindo’s vacation rental market is robust, especially when it comes to large (6+ bedroom) homes to share with other wedding guests. Because we know you have priorities: You seek luxury. You’d like Pacific Ocean views. And you want upscale amenities – five-star extras like an infinity pool, private chef, daily housekeeping, ample entertainment spaces, and privacy for all your guests.
We’ve got you covered. In fact, we have an entire fleet of luxury vacation rentals that destination wedding guests love, time and time again.
Villa Tranquila, designed by one of Central America’s most noted architects, is lavishly furnishings, spans 13,000 square-feet, and overlooks the magnificent golf greens at Hacienda Pinilla. And, with eight deluxe suites (and 10 bathrooms), you can share the villa between up to 24 wedding guests.
Another favorite is Casa de Luz, an 8-bedroom, 7-bathroom beachfront home with room for 23+ guests – one of the largest beachfront homes in the Tamarindo area. And, did we mention? It has spectacular beachfront social spaces for spending your downtime together.
At El Chante, possibly the most eco-friendly and beautiful private home in Costa Rica, you’ll treat yourselves to nine individual bungalows (sleep 20) and a tropical haven of open-air architecture, sustainable luxuries, and sweeping ocean views.
Don’t see something that strikes your fancy (or is large enough for your group)? Search all our Tamarindo vacation rentals, where you’ll find everything from ocean-view 2-bedrooms to palatial properties that accommodate up to 64 guests!
(And remember, if you’d like any help with planning or booking tours, our in-house concierge, Cristina (send her an email) can recommend, arrange, and ensure all the details for you and your friends and family – and book them on your behalf, absolutely free!)
Things to Do in Tamarindo
Tamarindo is one of Costa Rica’s top destinations. Why? Because, in addition to our spectacular beaches and excellent surf, we’re also at the epicenter of many of the country’s most incredible (and iconic) activities. From chill nature-watching, to record-breaking sport fishing, to adrenaline-pumping zip lines, we’ll take you through all of Costa Rica’s bucket-list thrills.
Groups heading to a destination wedding in Tamarindo – especially groups comprised of friends and family traveling together – often book adventures and activities to enjoy together. Here are a few of the most popular:
Surfing: If we had to pick one activity to recommend, it would be surfing. That’s because Tamarindo’s surf is world-renowned and yet, many of the best spots are appropriate for beginner and intermediate surfers. (Advanced surfers, don’t worry – there are plenty of breaks, barrels, and other waves just for you.) We can point you in the right direction, arrange for board rentals, and even hook you up with the best surf lessons in the area.
Catamaran Sailing: If we got to pick one additional must-do activity, it would be this! Tamarindo sunsets are pretty special, and even more so when paired with an afternoon at sea, snorkeling hidden coves and sunbathing on quiet beaches. Add in a spread of food and tropical drinks, and you have a recipe for an unforgettable day in Costa Rica.
Sport Fishing: Avid anglers know that Costa Rica’s north Pacific is the place to go for great fishing, but what you may not know is that we can also hook you up with the BEST boat and the BEST crew ever! We also offer the typical Costa Rican panga fishing boat, for the authentic Costa Rican fishing experience.
Turtle Nesting: Talk about group bonding. If you’re in town for turtle nesting, do yourself a favor and book a night tour to Las Baulas National Park, an internationally renowned (and incredibly important) nesting site for leatherback sea turtles, a threatened species.
Canopy / Zipline: Okay, if you’re looking for a little heart-pumping in your vacation, this is it! You’ll jump off sky-high platforms, swing through the canopy, navigate a swimming bride, and even scale down a thrilling rappel. It’s high-octane and all fun!
Snorkeling or Scuba Diving: Whether you’re looking to spot manta rays, or reef sharks, or wily octopuses, great captains will know just where to take you, whether it’s to a tiny and secluded inlet or a major destination like the Cataline Islands.
Mangrove Tours: There are tons of nature tours available, but none quite so Tamarindo as a mangrove tour, which will take you through the canals in search of photo ops and nature sightings, including crocodiles, iguanas, monkeys, and dozens of bird species.
Of course, there are many, many more things to do in and around Tamarindo, including tubing/rafting, horseback riding, ATV tours, ocean kayaking, luxury spa days, and even day trips to Palo Verde National Park (wetlands and wildlife-watching) and Rincón de la Vieja National Park (hot springs, hiking, horseback riding and more!).
Things to See in Tamarindo
Think we’ve covered all there is to do in Costa Rica? We’ve barely scratched the surface. There’s a lot more to do (when you’re not attending a destination wedding in Tamarindo!) and, even more importantly, see! Here are a few of our must-dos-or-you’ll-regret-it-forever Tamarindo attractions:
Beaches: Tamarindo’s beaches are some of the best in the world, some of the most beautiful in Costa Rica, and some of the most varied, in terms of what you can see and do there. From killer surf to you-have-to-see-them-to-believe-them pink sands, our beaches could fill your every day and still leave you wanting more.
Las Baulas National Marine Park: Even if the leatherbacks aren’t nesting (or hatching), our neighboring Las Baulas Marine Park still offers miles of pristine beaches, great surf, and other must-see sights.
Tamarindo Wildlife Refuge: Animal lovers, this one’s for you! Set amidst the Tamarindo Estuary, this wildlife-rich saltwater jungle stretches from sea to mangroves, covering wetland habitats home to monkeys and coatis, herons and caimans.
Catalina Islands: Known for their scuba diving, these iconic islands also offer superb scenery – above and under the water. On your way there, keep your eyes open for manta rays, dolphins, sea turtles, and whales breaching near the boat!
Nightlife: You’re here to celebrate; we can’t fail to mention the Tamarindo nightlife! From dancing and dining, hosted events to live music, beachfront fire dancers and after-hours drinks, our sandy beach town sure knows how to have fun.
Getting to/from Tamarindo
Sometimes, the wedding couple arranges airport transportation for their guests. Other times, guests arrive on different flights and group transportation is too complicated to arrange. For those times, you’ll want to know how to get to Tamarindo (and back to the airport again).
Option 1: Private Airport Shuttle
Hands down, this is our favorite way to get to Tamarindo. After a long flight, there’s nothing better than finding your name on a sign, climbing into an air-conditioned vehicle, and letting your driver handle your bags, the driving, and all the other details.
Option 2: Drive
You’ll probably want a rental car while you’re in town – don’t worry, if you shuttle from the airport, we can have your rental car dropped off at the house! – so if you pick one up at the airport, be sure to use Waze, a free GPS app, to navigate to Tamarindo. Otherwise, from the airport, take Route 21 south to Route 155 southwest, and then follow signs on Avenida las Palmas west to Tamarindo downtown.
You have three additional options, as well – but we don’t recommend them. The first is flying into SJO (San José International Airport) and taking a puddle-jumper to Tamarindo; the second is taking a shared shuttle from Liberia, which can be scheduled at inconvenient-to-you times and has luggage limitations; and the third is to take the public bus, which we recommend only more the most adventurous travelers.
What else would you like to know?
And that, wedding guests, wraps up this our primer for destination wedding guests in Tamarindo. If there’s anything, in particular, you’d like to know, please post a comment or get in touch! We’re always happy to help.