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The 12 Best Restaurants in Samara, Costa Rica: Foodie Guide

Are you looking for the best restaurants in Samara, Costa Rica?

Samara is a relaxed beach town that is perfect for families looking for calm beach waters and beautiful views. This town is also home to several amazing restaurants at all price points and for several different food interests.

We created this guide to the 12 best restaurants in Samara to give you info on great places to eat, info about tipping, security warnings, must try food items, and more.

Let’s get to it!

Map of Samara Restaurants

We created this map of all the best places to eat so you can easily plan which place works for your meal.

Almost every place on this list is located directly in downtown Samara off of the main streets and can easily be walked to from the beach or downtown hotels.

You can also open this in Google Maps here.

1. Sweeties By Celia

Sweeties by Celia is a food truck run by the lovely Celia.

She serves up a limited menu (usually she has 3 options) as well as several great cakes. Typically she serves some type of curry and there is always a vegetarian or vegan option.

It’s always delicious and always a great experience.

There are outdoor tables for you to enjoy your meal.

  • Price Point: $
  • Vegetarian Options? Yes
  • Takes Reservations? No. Just stop on by!
  • Opening Hours: 11:30 AM – 8:30 PM daily
  • Rating: 5/5 stars on TripAdvisor

Get More Info on Sweeties By Celia

2. Bohemia Café

This cafe is a great place to go for breakfast for lunch. Their menu consists of a variety of omelets, toasts, crepes, cereals, paninis, and salads. They also have a decent coffee and juice menu.

I also really like the atmosphere of this place. It is right downtown but feels secluded on this eclectic covered-terrace.

  • Price Point: $$
  • Vegetarian Options? Yes, there are plenty of vegetarian options
  • Takes Reservations? No
  • Opening Hours: 08:00 AM – 2:00 PM daily except Sundays’s
  • Rating: 5/5 stars on TripAdvisor

Get More Info on Bohemia Café

3. Mamagui

The 12 Best Restaurants in Samara, Costa Rica: Foodie Guide

If you are looking for a more high-end dining experience, Mamagui is probably the best option in Samara. This restaurant is located at the front of Hotel Giada.

Their menu consists of a few meat dishes, pastas, fish, and several gourmet pizzas.

  • Price Point: $$
  • Vegetarian Options? Yes. There are several vegetarian pizzas. They also state on their menu that you can ask them about vegetarian options. So, I’m guessing they will happily prepare something for you.
  • Takes Reservations? You can call them at +506 2656 2347
  • Opening Hours: 5:30 PM – 10:00 PM daily
  • Rating: 4.5/5 stars on TripAdvisor

Get More Info on Mamagui

4. Falafel Cafe

Sometimes you just need a break from Costa Rican food. When that happens I love to head to Falafel Cafe.

They serve a variety of wraps, dishes, salads, and burgers with a focus on falafel and hummus.

It’s the perfect lunch spot!

  • Price Point: $
  • Vegetarian Options? Yes they have several falafel based options
  • Takes Reservations? No
  • Opening Hours: 11:00 AM – 5:00 PM daily. Closed on Tuesdays
  • Rating: 4.5/5 stars on TripAdvisor

Get More Info on Falafel Cafe

5. El Lagarto

El Lagarto restaurant has two locations, one in the town of Samara and one in Manuel Antonio. This restaurant serves an extensive menu of meat, seafood, and cocktails in a fun open-air setting.

A steak and cocktail is always a good option here.

  • Price Point: $$
  • Vegetarian Options? There is a very limited vegetarian menu.
  • Takes Reservations? Yes, you can make a reservation on their website here. Scroll all the way to the bottom for the booking form.
  • Opening Hours: 3:00 PM – 10:00 PM daily
  • Rating: 4.5/5 stars on TripAdvisor

Get More Info on El Lagarto

6. Gusto Beach

The 12 Best Restaurants in Samara, Costa Rica: Foodie Guide

This place isn’t as highly rated as some other places on this list, and I agree. The food here is decent but everything is somewhat pricey and the service isn’t always the best.

However, this restaurant is located directly on the beach and has a beach bar vibe, which we always love.

Instead of getting a meal here, I suggest coming for an afternoon or sunset cocktail with beautiful views. They have beach chairs set up as well as tables on the sand.

  • Price Point: $$
  • Vegetarian Options? There is a small vegetarian menu.
  • Opening Hours: 08:00 AM – 11:30 PM
  • Rating: 4/5 stars on TripAdvisor

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7. L’Authentique

This restaurant has a Swiss/ French vibe to it. They serve a mix of things such as tapas, charcuterie platters, and raclette.

Usually, when we come here we opt for a charcuterie platter and some good wine.

Costa Rica doesn’t always have the best local cheeses and cured meats, but they have found some really amazing local options.

  • Price Point: $$$
  • Vegetarian Options? Yes, there are a few vegetarian options including a charcuterie platter that is without meat.
  • Takes Reservations? You can call them at +506 8544 1691
  • Opening Hours: 5:00 PM – 11:00 PM Tuesday – Saturday
  • Rating: 5/5 stars on TripAdvisor

Get More Info on L’Authentique

8. Soda Colochos

soda coloches samara

Our favorite place to go when we are looking for a good typical Costa Rican meal. This restaurant doesn’t look like much, but the food is very good.

Thomas usually goes for the whole fish and I tend to get some type of casado. They have a very good selection of seafood dishes as well.

Note, when you look this restaurant up it is also called Malibu Restaurante sometimes. I guess they recently changed the name.

  • Price Point: $$
  • Vegetarian Options? This is not the best option for vegetarians
  • Takes Reservations? I don’t think they take reservations, but we have never had a problem getting a table.
  • Opening Hours: 11:00 am – 3:00 pm, 5:30 pm – 9:30 pm daily. Closed Tuesday’s
  • Rating: 4.5/5 stars on TripAdvisor

Get More Info on Soda Colochos

9. Anglers

Anglers offers Asian-Tico fusion food in an outdoor/ open air setting. It is all very relaxed and very tasty. This is a great spot for stir fry, tacos, fish and chips, and more.

  • Price Point: $$
  • Vegetarian Options? There are a few vegetarian options, but not a big selection.
  • Takes Reservations? I don’t think they take reservations but you can always call them at +506 8312 4586
  • Opening Hours: 11:00 AM – 9:00 PM daily
  • Rating: 5/5 stars on TripAdvisor

Get More Info on Anglers

10. Microbar Sámara

The best bar in the area! They always have an extensive selection of craft beers on tap as well as cocktails.

They also offer some tapas and appetizer food items, but I can’t comment on that since we have never eaten here.

Instead, we like to eat at one of the restaurants on this list and come here for a drink afterward.

  • Price Point: $$
  • Takes Reservations? No
  • Opening Hours: 5:00 PM – 02:30 AM daily
  • Rating: 4.5/5 stars on TripAdvisor

Get More Info on Microbar Sámara

11. La Puesta del Sol Restaurant

The 12 Best Restaurants in Samara, Costa Rica: Foodie Guide

This amazing restaurant is not located directly in downtown Samara, but instead in nearby Playa Carillo at La Puesta Del Sol Bed and Breakfast.

Everything we have eaten here has been great and beautifully presented, but I suggest opting for a fresh fish dish.

We like to come here right around 5:15pm and enjoy dinner with a sunset view from their elevated dining area. They also often have live music at sunset.

  • Price Point: $$
  • Vegetarian Options? There are a few vegetarian options
  • Takes Reservations? You can call them at +506 2228 5353
  • Opening Hours: 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM Thursday – Sunday
  • Rating: 5/5 stars on TripAdvisor

Get More Info on La Puesta del Sol

12. Au Fil Des Crêpes

Great place for both savory and sweet crepes, craft beers, and good vibes. I like to come here for a relaxed lunch. The owners are wonderful people who will take great care of you.

  • Price Point: $
  • Vegetarian Options? Yes. There are several vegetarian friendly crepes
  • Takes Reservations?  No
  • Opening Hours: 08:00 AM – 4:00 PM every day except Sunday
  • Rating: 5/5 stars on TripAdvisor

Get More Info on Au Fil des Crepes

Other Things to Know About Eating in Samara

  • Most restaurants in Samara do not have websites. Some may have Facebook pages, but some don’t have their menu listed. You will usually have to stop at the restaurant if you want to check out the menu. 
  • If you have any food allergies, definitely let your waiter know. I suggest carrying a card with your allergies translated into Spanish to prevent any language-related miscommunication. As someone with a potentially deadly seafood allergy, I get it! The struggle is real. 
  • Most places take cash and credit card, but it is best to check before eating. There are two ATM’s and banks in the downtown area. These are Banco Nacional and BCR.
  • Tipping is not required in Costa Rica, but it is becoming more and more common. You can find out more in our guide to tipping. 
  • You can usually drink the tap water in Samara. However, I would still suggest buying bottled water just to be on the safe side. We like to buy large jugs and just refill our water bottles as needed. 
  • Samara is pretty safe, but petty theft does sometimes occur. A lot of the restaurants here are somewhat open air. It is best to never leave your wallet or cell phone on the table. also, do not leave your purse or backpack on the back of your chair. Instead, put it on the floor between your legs with one strap looped through your leg.
  • Once the sun goes down the mosquitos can be intense. If you plan on an outdoor dinner, bring bug spray.
  • Some of the roads outside of downtown Samara are unpaved. Keep this in mind when considering restaurants that are a bit further away.

Check out our complete Samara Guide for more info on visiting this town

Conclusion: Samara Restaurants

In conclusion, there are tons of great dining options in Samara and the surrounding area. We definitely suggest trying some fresh fish or seafood, but all taste buds will find something great to eat here.

If you have any questions about restaurants in Samara, Costa Rica don’t hesitate to leave them in the comment section below. We are always happy to help you out!

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