Things to do In Tamarindo – March/April 2019

Welcome to your Tamarindo spring break!  It’s hot, it’s sunny, and there are lots of exciting Things to Do in Tamarindo to make this the most fun vacation you’ve ever taken.   If you haven’t already done so, make your reservation right now for your Tamarindo Vacation Rental.  The town will fill to capacity in the coming weeks, so get your foot in the door now!

things to do in tamarindo
photo by Anders Wideskott


Tamarindo International Surf Film Festival

We’re kicking off the excitement on March 15 and 16 with the First Annual Tamarindo International Surf Film Festival.  The festival will be held on the at the Multicines movie theatre beside Automercado just before you hit the beach in Tamarindo.  This event is part of the Robert August Surf and Turf golf/surf tournament that takes place right here every year and benefits CEPIA.  CEPIA is a non-profit organization in Guanacaste that helps schools and organizes sports, educational activities, and counseling services for the local children and youth. There are going to be two evenings of surf films, food, music, and raffles. Advance purchase tickets are 15$ for one night or 25$ for both nights.  Tickets will be available at the door as well for 20$ each.

You can buy advance tickets for the International Surf Film Festival at the Tamarindo Multicines movie theater or at Bookstore of the Waves beside Cafe Tico.

Learn more about the festival, where to buy tickets, and about CEPIA here:

tamarindo surfing
photo by Cameron Kirby

Fiestas in Villareal

What do you know–the end of the Surf Film Festival is not the end of the fun, because, on March 17, you don’t want to miss the Tope that kicks off a week of fiestas in Villareal.  This is a real Costa Rican traditional cultural event!

A tope is kind of like a giant horse parade–with plenty of booze–that ends in a rodeo.  See, we told you that you don’t want to miss it!  The origin of this tradition hails from Guanacaste’s cattle ranching culture and simulates a massive cattle round-up, except that nowadays the bulls for the week’s rodeo will be transported to the arena in trucks.  The tope procession will leave Tamarindo and ride over the back road through the mountains to Villareal on Sunday afternoon.  If you’re not up for mid-day horseback ride in the blazing sun, don’t worry.  Get to Villareal where there will be food, music, and dancing as the riders arrive in the late afternoon.

Practice up on your Spanish by checking out the Facebook page :

costa rica rodeo
photo property of The Howler Magazine

La Senda Music Festival

Make sure you don’t miss the one-of-a-kind La Senda Music Festival on March 22 and 23.  La Senda is the world’s largest natural maze and it is located right here in Guanacaste about 20 minutes from Tamarindo.  On the weekend of March 22 and 23, La Senda will host a celebration of art and music dedicated to the purpose of elevating our senses and leading us to become more conscious of the immediacy of nature and of our presence in the here and now.  Tickets for these events are on sale right now at various area businesses and through Yapp app.

World Wine Festival

The following weekend on March 30, plan to attend The Wine World Festival at Reserva Conchal.  This festival will be a day to celebrate wonderful wines, live music, and the beach.  Tickets are $20 and include admission to the festival, a personal wine glass, and a welcome mimosa.

photo by Kelsey Knight

That will wrap it up for March, but April is busy too!  Semana Santa begins on April 14, but let’s save the best news for last.


One thing you can do every month in Tamarindo is join our community for a bingo game that benefits the Surfrider Foundations beach cleaning program.  This bingo game is a great way to make a donation and come away with a fantastic prize!  It’s held on the first Friday of every month at the Surf Club Sports Bar at 7 PM.

Clasica Reacreativa Mountain Bike Race

On April 18, right in the middle of Semana Santa, Hacienda Pinilla will host the 5th annual Recreativa mountain bike race.  Hacienda Pinilla is full of exciting mountain bike trails that range in difficulty from no-problem to are-you-kidding-me.  The race has a 40 kilometer and a 220-kilometerroute, so pick the one you’re most ready for and don’t forget that midday temperatures at this time of year are often in the upper 90’s.  The race costs $25 to join and includes hydration stations and free t-shirts for the first 200 takers.  Check out the link below that will give you more information on the race and get signed up in time for a shirt:


Tamarindo triathalon
photo property of 5ta Clasica Recreativa

Semana Santa

So now, on to Semana Santa.  Semana Santa is what we call Easter Week in Latin America.  Outside of Latin America, Easter is normally a day or at the most, a weekend.  Here, it’s a whole week.  If you haven’t ever experienced Semana Santa in Costa Rica–well, you’re in for a surprise.

Semana Santa starts off rather unobtrusively.  At first, you might not notice anything special about it, but hang tight.  Schools are closed during Semana Santa and by the end of the week, everything is closed.  Everything.  As a tourist visiting popular tourist destinations, you probably won’t directly experience the “everything is closed” factor, but if you were to roll through the capital city or small Costa Rican towns instead of hanging at the beach, you would.  Here comes an important piece of information:  as everything is closed during Semana Santa, it means pretty much all of Costa Rica is on vacation.  And what do Costa Ricans do when they’re on vacation?  The same thing you do!  They go to the beach!  The beaches, during the second half of Semana Santa, are jam-packed.  They just are.  You should know this.  If you love lots of activity and people-watching, this will be fun for you.  If you love solitude and quiet beach walks, Semana Santa may tax your patience.  Tamarindo is never boring, but during Semana Santa, just like the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day, it really does become a whole different place.

things to do in tamarindo
Tamarindo is a busy place during Semana Santa and year-end holidays!

If you thrive on the vibrancy of busy beaches and love the free concerts and family activities, please join right in!  If you are looking for a more restful atmosphere, you may want to go exploring.  Head south to Avellanas, Playa Negra, or venture as far as Nosara and Playa Guiones.  Trek north.  Brasilito and Flamingo will probably be busy, but swing by Playa Potrero, Playa Danta, or Sugar Beach.

Another thing you could do to beat the Semana Santa crowds is planning some Tamarindo tours to places like Rincon de La Vieja National Park, an Arenal Volcano Tour or do the Monteverde Canopy Tour at the Monteverde cloud forest.  These spots will be cooler than the sweltering coast, and whereas they are popular destinations, will not receive as much traffic as Tamarindo.

As you can see, this is going to be the best spring break of your life.  The temperatures are climbing and so is the excitement in Tamarindo!  Contact us and let us help you lay out a vacation plan for the coming weeks.