santa teresa sunset

Costa Rica Sunset – Best Places to Enjoy the View

Sitting on a white sand beach while listening to the waves crash to shore as the sky turns fiery orange is something that never gets old…at least in my opinion. 

Costa Rica’s Pacific coast has about 630 miles (1,290 kilometers) of coastline. That means there are tons of places for you to enjoy the sunset every day during your Costa Rica travels.

We compiled this guide to Costa Rica’s sunsets to give you some tips on the best ways to maximize your sunset viewing enjoyment.

Time of Day to Catch the Sunset

costa rica sunset

Costa Rica isn’t too far from the equator. That means that every day, there is about 12 hours of sunlight and there isn’t much variation in sunrise and sunset times throughout the year. 

The sun rises every day between 5:15am and 6am. The sun sets every evening between 5:15pm and 6pm.

Costa Rica is north of the equator, which means that December 21st is the shortest day of the year with a sunset of around 5:20pm. 

On June 21st, the longest day or the year, the sun sets right at 6pm.

If you would like to see the exact sunset time during your Costa Rica vacation you can easily check it out here

Keep in mind that the dry season on the Pacific coast runs from December until late April. This is the best time to watch the sunset without worrying about the chance of rain.

However, even during the rainy season it usually only rains for a few hours in the afternoon and it is still possible to enjoy rewarding sunset views.

Best Places to Watch the Sunset

costa rica sunset

The best place to catch the sunset is on the beaches along the Pacific coast. To have a really fun experience we have a few suggestions.

Take a Sunset Catamaran Tour

In most beach towns it is possible to take a sunset catamaran tour. Sometimes these tours combine snorkeling, diving, or dinner with enjoyable sun setting views. 

Our favorite places for this are in Manuel Antonio, Tamarindo, and the beach towns around Playas del Coco.

Make a Dinner Reservation with a View

In some towns in Costa Rica, there are restaurants located directly on the beach. The best places for this are Tamarindo, Playa Flamingo, and on Playa Hermosa just above Playas del Coco.  

We especially love Langosta Beach Club and El Be Club in Tamarindo, CoCo Loco in Playa Flamingo, and Aqua Sport on Playa Hermosa.

Another great way to enjoy the sunset view while eating is from a cliff-front restaurant. Manuel Antonio is an especially good spot for this. 

Our favorite cliff view dinner spots in Manuel Antonio are Ronny’s Place and Agua Azul Cafe.

Just note, enjoying dinner with a view is a popular Costa Rica activity. You may want to call and try to make reservations if you would like to eat at one of these spots. 

Also note that some of these places have indoor and outdoor seating. Make sure to say you would like to sit outside with a sunset view when you make a reservation. 

Take a Sunset Paddle

Pick your paddle option of choice, whether it’s kayaking, SUP, or a sunset surf; there is something so enjoyable about being out on the water while watching the sun go down.

In most beachfront towns on the Pacific coast it is possible to rent a surfboard, sea kayak, or SUP board if the water is calm enough.   

Bring a Picnic or Drinks to the Beach

Thomas and I are big fans of bringing a light dinner and some drinks to the beach with us and watching the sun go down. 

Keep in mind that all the beaches in Costa Rica need to have public access by law. That means that the entire Pacific coast is there for your sunset viewing pleasure.

For an easy dinner, if we are staying in an Airbnb with our own kitchen, we like to get some fresh fish and make ceviche. We then just bring it in a container with two forks. We also make a lot of sandwiches.

You can also just pick up something from a nearby restaurant and take it to-go. 

For drinks, we like to grab a bottle of wine or try some local beers.

Sunset Photo Break

And now, here is a photo break of some of our favorite sunset views that we have experienced throughout the years of living in Costa Rica.

costa rica sunset view coco
One of my favorite pictures of Thomas and I taken on Plays Hermosa in the Guanacaste region of the country.
costa rica sunset view
The night after our wedding we experienced an amazing sunset with friends on Playa Langosta near Tamarindo.
costa rica sunset view
If possible, Thomas is always enjoying his sunset view with a fishing rod in hand. This is Playa Penca near Playa Flamingo.
costa rica sunset view
I feel like this looks like a painting. We happened to catch this amazing backdrop and huge boat on Playa Plantaneras near the town of Puerto Jimenez.
costa rica sunset Santa teresa
This was our last sunset we enjoyed together in March 2020 before life changed completely. This is Playa Mal Pais near Santa Teresa.
costa rica sunset view
This was taken while enjoying sunset cocktails at a restaurant in resort above Playa Hermosa in Guanacaste.

Costa Rica Sunset Watching Tips

costa rica sunset view nosara

– Make sure your phone is charged for the walk home. Thomas and I have a bad habit of sitting out on the beach too long until is pitch black. It is then always a challenge to make our way back off of the beach. This is when the flashlight feature on your phone comes in handy.

– Pack all the bug spray. The second the sun goes down here the mosquitos come out in full force. Bring a bottle of bug spray with you and don’t forget to use it in abundance. 

– Don’t forget to take tons of sunset pictures! They are nice to look at when you back home and missing the tropical Costa Rica vibes.

– Although we love watching the sunset along the Pacific coast, that doesn’t mean you can’t also get great views from more central regions of the country. Head to the mountains and hills for amazing views.

– If you are more interested in sunrises, Costa Rica is a great place for that as well. Just head to the Caribbean coast! 

If you have any questions about viewing the sunset in Costa Rica, don’t hesitate to ask in the comment section below. We are happy to help you out!

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We’re Thomas (the German) and Sarah (the US-er).

We met in Virginia, moved to Germany, and now live in sunny Costa Rica. It was a spontaneous decision to move here, but it was the best decision!

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One Response

  1. We still remember the beautiful sunsets at Ronnys Place in Manuel Antonio.
    And we will never forget the awesome sunset on your Wedding Day. Love you.

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