Mal Pais Costa Rica
The small beach community of Mal Pais sits next to the Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve on the Southern tip of the Nicoya Peninsula in Costa Rica. The beaches of Mal Pais are of great scenic beauty with small coves, tide pools and lonesome streches of coastline.
On its northern end, on Playa Carmen, Mal Pais joins the thriving surf town of Santa Teresa where you find some of the best surf beaches of Costa Rica, and the Mal Pais Surf Camp at only a 100 m from the surf!
Santa Teresa is just across the road intersection, around 200 m from the Mal Pais Surf Camp. In Santa Teresa you find banks, supermarkets, car and ATV rentals along with a multitude of bars, restaurants and surf shops. Santa Teresa has grown quickly in recent years and the buzzy lifestyle of the surf town is attractive for the ones, while the others prefer the more tranquil and undisturbed surroundings of Mal Pais.
Activities in Mal Pais
Besides surfing Mal Pais offers a choice of other activities and attractions.
From the fishing port of Mal Pais you can take boat tours and watch dolphins, sea turtles and whales. If you want you can also snorkel or dive from the boat. Tours also include the Tortuga Islands and other snorkeling spots.
On a fishing tour in Mal Pais you are almost guaranteed an excellent catch which can be red snapper, sea bass, grouper, snook and tuna. And in the evening you can have your fish prepared by our kitchen staff!
Across from the Mal Pais fishing port you can also go on a canopy tour to zip through the tree tops at the side of Cabo Blanco, or see the nature reserve and aquatic life from the water side paddling on a SUP board.
Relaxing and always beautiful is also a hike along the scenic coast to find tide pools and small coves where you can swim. Or amble along the beaches and into the countryside on a horseback.
To explore the area on your own you can also rent an ATV to visit the waterfalls of Montezuma and other surf beaches in Santa Teresa and Playa Hermosa.
Nature lovers should not miss a visit to Cabo Blanco, which was the first national park created in Costa Rica.
Our hotel will gladly arrange any of these tours and activities for you! » Request information
Activities Map of Mal Pais
Travel Information – How to get to Mal Pais
Drive from the San Jose Airport to Puntarenas (approx. 2 hrs.) then board the car ferry to Paquera (approx. 70 mins.).
» Ferry Schedules
Once in Paquera approx. 1-1/2 hrs. to Mal Pais on a good to fair road with signs. In Playa Carmen /Santa Teresa turn left and continue for 200 m until the Surf Camp entrance.
Make reservations on SANSA or NatuarAir prior to arrival in Costa Rica.
Adventurous & budget traveler can take the direct bus from San Jose to Mal Pais. Very reasonable but a bit of a hassle. The buses need 5.5 hours to Mal Pais and leave San Jose at 6 am and 2 pm.
Board the ferry with your valuables and leave your luggage on the bus.
Leave the driving to us
We will pick you up at your hotel in San José or Airport Juan Santamaria. The price for transportation is $50 per person, or $95 for transportation and 1 night in a hotel near the airport. » Contact us