The Choice: Tamarindo vs Playa Grande?

People ask us often, to explain the difference between Tamarindo vs Playa Grande? Why should they choose one over the other? The choice and final decision is ultimately yours, and as individual as you are. Here is a little summary of Tamarindo and Playa Grande: Tamarindo: Tamarindo is much more touristy- busier, more shops, more people, more stuff… If you are looking for nightlife- clubs and bars are open late and there is a lot of choice in Tamarindo. Tamarindo has a lot of restaurants. I am told, however, by some who frequent there, that it is hard to find a great one. Always a good idea to ask locals. At the moment, Nordico, Seasons by Shlomy and Pangas are topping the charts, along with Pura Vegan, Noguis and La Bodega. Activities are more readily accessible in Tamarindo. Like Playa Grande, it also has good surfing. Down-side is that the learning to surf area is small and crowded with surf schools. Playa Grande:  Playa Grande is more peaceful. Uncrowded is the key word for Playa Grande- there aresurf  a couple commercial stores (our surf shop and another), a collection of small boutique hotels, and a lovely, uncrowded 4km stretch of beach which is separated from Tamarindo by an estuary… the only place you will find a crowd is at main peak surf break, when the waves are good!! Playa Grande doesn’t have a real ‘town center’… in fact, it doesn’t have a church, soccer field, bakery, bank or any other key installations one would think was crucial in a ‘town’! Small boutique hotels, not resorts, are the rule in...
Surf Etiquette and Safety

Surf Etiquette and Safety

Surf safety and surf etiquette are paramount to an enjoyable surf session for everyone involved. Surfing is fun, it’s adrenaline-pumping and life-changing. Surfing can also be dangerous to you, and those around you- like any sport, or activity, there are guidelines for best practices. Keep reading, to discover how you can minimize the chance of accidents, conflicts with other surfers and maintain good vibes and good karma! Select the most appropriate location for your skill level. If in doubt, ask your local surf shop. Surfer closest to where the wave broke has priority, or in some places, it’s the person first on their feet. Stay out of the way of other surfers- when paddling out, paddle towards the broken part of the wave so you avoid interfering with surfers on the green face. Don’t be a wave hog- take turns, encourage others. Be observant, pay attention at all times. Assist a fellow surfer in trouble or distress. Spend a little time speaking to locals before surfing- figure out the local vibe, how best to fit in. Your board is a missile and has the potential to harm another person. Never ditch your board when a surfer is behind you- hold onto it like a life depends on it. Remember a 9ft board with a 9ft leash has a reach of close to 20 feet…. and your fellow surfer on a similar board has the same… try and keep a good 40ft from other beginners. Relax, have fun, don’t be a jerk. Smile, share and lift the spirits of those around...
In- house Chef and Catering in Playa Grande.

In- house Chef and Catering in Playa Grande.

Over the years, many visitors have really appreciated the local knowledge and seamless service we offer in our role as Concierge Services Provider. As a result, we receive countless requests for assistance in securing activities, tours and also, services of an in-house chef, or catering, from prospective visitors to Playa Grande, Costa Rica. Frijoles Locos Concierge Service can recommend and reserve, on your behalf, someone to take the chore of cooking off your hands while on vacation, allowing you to simply relax, enjoy the sunsets, savor a cerveza and sit down to a culinary delight. From high-end, gourmet chef services, to middle of the road yet quality cuisine and down the budget scale to a simple delivery service of catered meals, we have what you need. Does a home-delivered meal of chicken lasagne or Spanish Seafood Paella sound appealing? How about fish crepes or beef tenderloin with creamy mushroom sauce. Food allergies, or particular dietary requests? No problem! Also available, an in- house cooking class where you can learn to cook typical Costa Rican food and extend the vacation mode when you repeat the experience back home. There are many wonderful restaurant options here in Playa Grande too- so make sure you leave time to explore some of our favorites such as the RipJack Inn, Hotel Bula Bula, Cafe del Pueblo, El Huerto Pizzeria or La Marejada. The Taco Star has delicious and great value tacos for lunch, and there are always new restaurants opening up each season. Email us for the most updated list. Contact our concierge team at [email protected] to find the best chef or cook options for...
What to take on your trip to Costa Rica?

What to take on your trip to Costa Rica?

One of the most frequently asked questions we receive, is what to take on your trip to Costa Rica? While we aren’t experts in all areas of Costa Rica, we sure can suggest some must-haves for your trip to Playa Grande and other beachy towns. If you have ideas you think we should add to the list, feel free to email us, we would love to hear from you! Below is your packing list: Sunscreen- a water-resistant type- we stock SunBum and HeadHunter which are great! Beach pants (for sunset watching, mosquito-free) Long sleeved lightweight shirt (as above) Insect repellant (especially May through to end November) US dollars in smaller denominations of up to $50’s (don’t exchange your cash back home, the exchange rate will be awful!) Sarong which can double as a beach blanket Flip-flops A pair of Tevas/ Keens/ sneakers you can get wet or dirty (for the adventure day, horseback riding, white water tubing and other super fun adventurous activities!) If you plan on scuba-diving, bring your PADI card. Items you no longer need at home and wish to donate to a good cause- used sneakers, clothing, always are appreciated at CEPIA, a fantastic local charity. Also, any spare space you might have for Pack for a Purpose items would be greatly appreciated and can be left at Frijoles Locos to be taken to La Paz Community School. Toiletries (Toothpaste is more pricey here, razors for shaving too. Tampons aren’t all that easy to get here and variety is limited… plus the price is super high. Check out the Diva Cup for a very travel-friendly alternative...
4 Key Tips for Beginner Surfers

4 Key Tips for Beginner Surfers

How Beginner Surfers can Stand Up on a Wave their First Time Surfing No doubt about it, learning to surf is hard! Here are 4 tips for beginner surfers, to ensure you stand up on a wave the first time you surf. 1/ Determine if you are goofy or regular foot. Goofy foot surfers have their right foot forward and regular foot surfers have their left foot forward. If you snowboard or skateboard, you should already know which of these you are. If not, have a friend push you from behind and whichever foot you step forward with first, becomes your front foot. 2/ Practice pop-ups on the beach. Draw a cross in the sand and lay down on it so your chest rests on the center of the cross. With hands in a wide push-up position, at chest level, draw your tummy in, to create space for your front leg to come through and plant your front foot at the center of the cross. Your back foot remains behind. Both your feet should be perpendicular to the vertical center line, not parallel as if you were skiing. Repeat, as many times as needed, until you nail the pop-up. 3/ Keep your hands flat. Think stable table. Hands flat on the surfboard will keep the surfboard steady. A common beginner surfer mistake is to grab the edges of the surfboard like reading a book- it will rock and roll and you will fall off. 4/ White-water first. Stay in the area of the beach where the waves have already broken. This area is referred to as the white-water. Allow the white-water waves to push you toward the beach, and stand...

The Loco Annual SALE Event Details

Save the date and clear your calendar! Date: August 29th and 30th, 2015 Time: 10am to 5pm Where: Frijoles Locos Surf Shop, PLAYA GRANDE 10% off any SURFBOARD, boogie board, skimboard or UKULELE. 20% off Nixon watches, VZ Sunglasses, and any item not specified in this list. 30% off all brand name CLOTHING including Volcom, Billabong, Hurley, Body Glove, RipCurl and more.. 30% off accessories such as leashes, fins, traction pads. 50% off all FRIJOLES LOCOS items including beach bags, footballs, frisbees, towels, hats, tees, tanks and more… PLUS random boxes of ultra-discounted items to clear out no matter what!! EVENTS and EXTRAS: Skittles guessing competition with proceeds going to CEPIA Giveaways and Prizes donated by Hurley. JUMPING CASTLE for the kids on Sunday only....
Surfing Costa Rica- Playa Grande and nearby surf breaks

Surfing Costa Rica- Playa Grande and nearby surf breaks

    PLAYA GRANDE: Surfing Costa Rica- Playa Grande’s best spots and nearby surf breaks…To surf Playa Grande, Costa Rica you will need to access the beach at one of a few options. The main public beach access is at the end of the road straight down from Frijoles Locos Surf Shop, where Hotel Las Tortugas is, and 200 meters north of here known as ‘the palm trees’. Palm trees are great for families, offering good shade. Both places have guarded parking for $2 per vehicle. Don’t leave anything in the car anywhere, ever! Palm Trees surf spot is closest to Casa Costa Palmera, Casa Sylmar, Casa Blanca, Villa Siempre, Villa Olivia and Casa Mirage. Nearby the rock there is a wedgy beach break but not good for beginners. Beginner surfers should stick to Palm Trees or between Casa Mirage and around 100m north of Hotel Las Tortugas. There is parking in front of RipJack Inn also, but not guarded. No matter what, never leave anything in your car. Ever. It takes a good 25-30 minutes to walk to or from the Tamarindo estuary to the main peak in front of Hotel Las Tortugas. Main peak has plenty of crowd, plenty of vibe, and should only be surfed by competent strong intermediates and up. Palm Beach Estates to the south end of Playa Grande has a long stretch of beach with breaks all along. Sandy bottom… tends to have more walled up waves but can be fun on the right day. Casitas is at the very south of the beach before the river-mouth. Other nearby breaks include Playa Avellanas (all...
Concierge, Tour and Activity Planning for Costa Rica

Concierge, Tour and Activity Planning for Costa Rica

One of the best ways to maximize your vacation and minimize stress while on vacation is to plan before you arrive. At Frijoles Locos Surf Shop we are so much more than your simple retail store. Utilize our experience and years of providing quality concierge assistance, tour planning and activities guidance- contact us well ahead of your Costa Rica vacation and you won’t be disappointed. Visiting Costa Rica for your vacation will be one of the most memorable vacations of your lifetime. Whether you are a surf enthusiast, adrenalin junkie, family with kids or couple planning a romantic vacation, Costa Rica has something for everyone. Starting with surf lessons in Costa Rica- you have many options for places to visit. We are most experienced and knowledgable on Playa Grande for surf lessons. Surf lessons in Playa Grande mean little to no crowds, plenty of space to find a patch of sandy beach to practice catching waves without the danger of running into someone else who is learning. Our Playa Grande surf lessons are conducted on the south end of Playa Grande where there is less people and smaller waves. Sunset sailing and snorkeling on a catamaran or private sailboat is probably one of the most relaxing ways to experience a Costa Rican sunset. Years of working with different providers and listening to comments of our valued customers on what works and what doesn’t, means that we are confident in the providers we recommend. We trust them to do the very best by our customer. Whether you are staying in Playa Grande, Tamarindo, Flamingo, Playa Danta, Potrero, or Reserva Conchal we have...
Driving Directions From Playa Grande to Marbella (Playa Frijolar)

Driving Directions From Playa Grande to Marbella (Playa Frijolar)

Driving Directions from Playa Grande to Marbella (Playa Frijolar) Driving time 1 hour 1. From Frijoles Locos Surf Shop, head towards Tamarindo: take a right at the school to leave Playa Grande. 2. After 7-8 minutes you will arrive in Matapalo. There is a soccer field here. Take a right at the stop sign when you see the soccer field. 3. In Huacas, just after SuperCompro, take your next RIGHT, towards Tamarindo. Don’t take the next right turn in Villa Real towards Tamarindo. Instead go straight ahead, following signs to the JW Marriott/ Hacienda Pinilla. You will continue straight onto a dirt road, passing by el Gollo store on your right. 4. Stay on this dirt road, don’t take the right hand turn to Hacienda Pinilla. Where the road forks right and left, the right has a paved stretch, don’t go on this road, stay on the dirt road. 5. From here, stay on the dirt road for around 15 minutes until you hit a paved road… then there is a right hand turn. Take this right hand turn. 6. 100 yards after this right hand turn, there is another right hand turn towards Junquillal and Paraiso. Turn right here. 7. Stay on this paved road around 10-15 minutes until you will see signs for Marbella Real Estate, a little dirt road on the left hand side. Stay on this dirt road for around 15-20 minutes until you get to Marbella… the beach is called Playa Frijolar. There is a soccer field on the left… 8. Take your first right after that soccer field. Dirt road all the way...
Driving Directions From Playa Grande to Playa Avellanas & Hacienda Pinilla

Driving Directions From Playa Grande to Playa Avellanas & Hacienda Pinilla

Driving directions from Playa Grande to Playa Avellanas & Hacienda Pinilla Beach Club 1. From Frijoles Locos Surf Shop, head towards Tamarindo: take a right at the school to leave Playa Grande. 2. After 7-8 minutes you will arrive in Matapalo. There is a soccer field here. Take a right at the stop sign when you see the soccer field. 3. In Huacas, just after SuperCompro, take your next RIGHT, towards Tamarindo. Don’t take the next right turn in Villa Real towards Tamarindo. Instead go straight ahead, following signs to the JW Marriott/ Hacienda Pinilla. You will continue straight onto a dirt road, passing by el Gollo store on your right. 4. Stay on this dirt road, until you reach the right hand turn to Hacienda Pinilla. Where the road forks right and left, the right has a paved stretch, go on this road, it will stay paved (with lots of pot holes until the entrance to Hacienda Pinilla. Drive up to the entrance of Hacienda Pinilla and say that you would like to go to the beach club. You can call ahead on 26803000 to see about availability. The guard will give you directions to the Beach Club. Surf your brains out at Little Hawaii while your non-surfing family members drink mojitos and eat good food! Everyone is...