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Playa Biesanz in Manuel Antonio: Secluded Swimming Beach

Playa Biesanz, located in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, is a secluded beach that is great for a variety of water-related activities. 

We created this guide to give you all the details about planning your visit here.

In the past, I would have probably described Playa Biesanz as a hidden gem, but it doesn’t feel so hidden anymore. 

Part of the reason is that there are a lot of resorts located nearby which don’t have beach access. These resorts tend to suggest their guests go to Biesanz Beach to access the white sand and turquoise waters.

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However, it is still a fun place to visit!


In your GPS you should be able to enter “Playa Biesanz” or “Biesanz Beach” and it should show you exactly where to go. If it is not showing up for you, try entering “Parador Resort” for your search. The beach is located just before the resort on your right-hand side.

There is no parking lot here. Instead, people pull their cars off on the side of the road and walk to the beach.

Usually, there is a person watching the cars to make sure they are safe. This person will typically charge a few dollars (so have a bit of money in colones or US dollars) to keep an eye on your car.

Even though we have never had anything bad happen, it is best not to leave any valuables in your vehicle even if it is being watched by a guard. 

From the road, the person watching cars can direct you to the path to the beach. It is a bit steep in spots and goes through the woods, so be careful walking. It will take less than 10 minutes to get to the beach.

playa biesanz sloth

As you are walking, look up in the trees. We have often spotted sloths or monkeys hanging out here. This guy ↑ was high up, but we were still able to get an OK view.

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Playa Biesanz in Manuel Antonio: Secluded Swimming Beach

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Activities at the Beach 

playa biesanz

The water is typically very calm here if you would like to go swimming. But, keep an eye out, we have also experienced some more choppy waves as well. 

It is possible to rent kayaks or snorkel gear on the beach from local vendors. The prices are OK, but not necessarily an amazing rate. This tends to vary by time of year and how much they think they can charge you. 

If a rate seems high to you, it’s ok to haggle somewhat. Costa Ricans don’t like confrontation so they may immediately back off. But what we usually do is say, “Hmm that is a bit high for us. We will think about it.” And see if they then offer a lower price. 

It is also possible to rent beach chairs with umbrellas if you want to spend the day lounging comfortably.

Food & Drinks

copa churchill

There are also a few venders selling food and drinks at the beach. They offer bottled sodas & water, cocktails, snack food (like bags of chips), and some cooked food (usually some kind of meat). 

There is also sometimes a vendor selling a sweet traditional Costa Rican treat which is referred to as either a “Churchill” or “copo”. This is made by scooping shaved ice into a cup and adding condensed milk, powdered milk, and a sweet-flavored syrup of your choice. 

Personally, I find it wayyyyy too sweet for my liking, but it is a good traditional food to try for the experience. 

If you don’t want to buy food at the beach, we highly suggest grabbing food at the Falafel Bar. It’s about a five-minute drive away from the beach. They serve amazing pita sandwiches and platters with your choice of falafel, shawarma, kebab, or schnitzel. It’s reasonably priced and always delicious. 

You can either eat there or they can also put your food in a to-go container if you would like to bring it to the beach. 

What to Bring

playa biesanz

A beach towel, sunscreen (at least SPF 50), bug spray (if you will be there in the evening), water to drink, snacks, cash in colones (if you would like to buy anything), snorkel gear (if you don’t want to rent it).

What To Wear

Your bathing suit, lightweight shirt and shorts, stable flip flops, a sun-blocking hat, flip flops, sunglasses, glasses strap 


playa biesanz

We have a few safety tips to ensure your day is enjoyable and stress-free.

Be careful when swimming. This area is a cove and usually, the water is calm, but we have also experienced some rougher water. If in doubt, ask one of the many locals renting gear on the beach. They should be able to direct you to the best swimming spots.

Don’t leave your things unattended. Petty crime can sometimes be an issue in Costa Rica.

Be careful when walking to the beach. The path down to the beach is a bit steep in some spots. 

And, as I mentioned earlier in this post, don’t leave valuables in your car. 

Things to Do After

Manuel Antonio is filled with fun things to do. Check out our guide to The 30 Best Things to Do in Manuel Antonio for tons of ideas.

A few of our favorite things are:

🏄‍♂️ Take a surf lesson with an experienced surfer (good for all levels)

Go on a sailing adventure on a historic wooden ship

🐎 Go on a jungle horseback riding tour with epic views

🍫 Take a cocoa bean to chocolate tour (with plenty of tasting opportunities)

If you plan to visit the Manuel Antonio National Park, we suggest doing that in the morning and coming to Playa Biesanz in the afternoon, because the park gets really full as the day goes on so it is best to get there early. 

Other Tips

Manuel Antonio is one of the most popular destinations in the country. So, book early if you will be traveling during the high season.

Don’t forget to check out our complete guide to Quepos and our complete guide to Manuel Antonio. Both destination guides are filled with tons of fun activities, safety tips, transportation info, and so much more!

Wrap Up

And, that is all for the Biesanz Beach guide! As you can tell, it is a great secluded spot to visit in the Manuel Antonio area and is the perfect spot for a family-friendly beach day.

If you have any questions feel free to ask in the comment section below. We are always happy to help you out!

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Costa Rica Travel Details: What You Need to Know

🚗 Should I rent a car in Costa Rica?

Having a rental car will give you the most flexibility when traveling in Costa Rica. This will also allow you to take fun day trips on your own.

🏄🏽 How can I book things to do?

We find that Viator tends to have the most comprehensive selection of activities with secure booking and good cancellation policies.

🍍 I’m overwhelmed with planning. Can you help?

Of course! I suggest joining our Facebook group for specific questions and head to our Start Here Page to get started planning.

✈️ What is the best way to book a flight?

Usually, we have the best luck finding great prices with Skyscanner. Check for flights to both San Jose Airport (SJO) and Liberia Airport (LIR).

🛏️ What is the best way to book my Costa Rica hotels?

We highly suggest Booking.com for hotel bookings and typically use VRBO for Costa Rica vacation rentals.

🗣️What is the main language in Costa Rica?

The main language in Costa Rica is Spanish. Most people working in tourism speak at least some English.

💰 What is the currency in Costa Rica?

The currency used in Costa Rica is the Costa Rican colón (CRC). However, the US dollar is widely accepted in most tourist areas

📞 What is the best way to stay connected?

An eSIM from Airalo is the easiest way to get 4G data while traveling in Costa Rica.

🌴 Is Costa Rica safe?

Generally, Costa Rica is considered safe for tourists. However, like any travel destination, it’s best to use caution and be aware of your surroundings.

🛂 Do you need a passport to go to Costa Rica?

Yes, Costa Rica is its own country. You will need a passport to visit.

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