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7 Days Rejuvenating Surf Camp in Malpais, Costa Rica

Refreshing Surf Camp Costa Rica

Instruction in English
Airport transfer available

Come to Hotel Moana and go surfing in the natural surfing paradise of Costa Rica! This is the right holiday for you if you are looking for a week of a tropical getaway to rejuvenate your body and mind. You will not only get to surf Costa Rica's best waves, but you will also get two massages while soaking in the beautiful surroundings. Don't miss this chance and pack your bags now!

Meet the instructors

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  • 6 surfing lessons
  • 2 60-minute massages
  • Long surf breaks with sandy bottoms
  • Experience Malpais' secluded and untouched natural beauty
  • A consistent wave type throughout the year
  • 6 nights' accommodation


6 days with instruction in English
Spoken languages: English
Airport transfer available:
Tambor Airport (US$55 per person)
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During your vacation, you'll encounter high-quality modern hotel suites and rooms that blend comfort with style leaving you with an unforgettable personal experience. Wake up each day and indulge in one of the best ocean views in Costa Rica as you cast your eye out over Malpais, Santa Teresa, and Playa Carmen's Beaches from the hotel's restaurant The Papaya Lounge. The restaurant offers a selection of tropical fruit and traditional breakfasts and later for sunset, Hotel Moana serves the freshest of local seafood, tapas, and delicious cocktails.

Beautiful tropical gardens, surrounding lush jungle and being within 200 meters of the ocean makes Moana's exclusive Resort an idyllic peaceful hideaway for your next destination or even for a dream wedding or honeymoon.


The hotel's rooms are placed on multi-levels throughout the hotel grounds, dispersed within the lush tropical gardens in five separate buildings. The hotel has a total of ten rooms, the Suite, two Junior Suites, four Deluxe, and three Standard rooms. All of the rooms are of a high standard, the three suites being the larger and more luxurious of the room types. All rooms come with air-conditioning, hot water, private bathroom, private deck, Wi-Fi, room safe and mini bar.

Pool area

At the pool, you'll find comfortable lounge-chairs and suspended day beds stretch out while seabirds circle overhead. At night, the pool area is dramatically lit, with African masks casting intriguing shadows, creating an exotic ambiance.

Concierge and office services

The front desk will gladly assist you on any queries or reservations you may need, whether it be on tours, maps, flights, surf breaks, or simply directing you to you're next destination, they're there to help. With many years of experience and extensive local knowledge of the wildlife, restaurants, beaches, Hotel Moana will provide you with professional advice and assistance.

Located also in the reception is a client PC and wireless internet which is free for guests to use. You can check your emails, burn CD's, upload photos or print off flight confirmations. Check-in time is at 2 p.m. and should you arrive late our front desk is accessible 24 hours a day.

Rancho and pool bar

The rancho is an open style lounge that sits next to the pool and allows you to seek shelter when the sun gets too hot. It's also the perfect place to practice yoga in the mornings, read a book in the afternoons or indulge in a soothing massage in the evenings. Sit back and chill out at the self-service pool bar which is perfect for a refreshing drink or a friendly chat while you're hanging out by the pool.

Deluxe room

The interior design of the Deluxe rooms is inspired by Africa, creating a stylish and comforting feel while affording a distinctive individuality. The rooms are spacious and bright and contain a four poster hand carved teak bed, TV, writing desk, and mini bar. With long draping silk curtains, an abundance of cushions, and crisp cotton sheets, these romantic beds ensure a dreamy nights sleep.

The room's large bathroom has a walk-in shower, Indonesian stone bowl basin, and a beautiful surface top hand carved from native Pochote wood. On arrival you'll find fresh tropical flowers placed in your room, and if you would like we can also arrange a bottle of champagne to greet you for a special occasion. Set to a high standard these rooms more than cater for the modern travelers' needs and requirements. All deluxe rooms contain one queen and one single bed.

Junior Suite

For the two new Junior Suites, Hotel Moana went for a modern design in terms of architecture. They wanted a family sized room and something that would stand out from the crowd but yet fit into the environment that the rooms are being placed into. To help achieve this, Hotel Moana embraced an organic approach for the building materials, using as much glass, natural woods, and stone as was possible. The rooms themselves come with large bay windows and doors in order to capitalize on the generous ocean view which is available from throughout the entire room.

The Junior Suites measure at 70 square meters which is considerably larger than the deluxe rooms. They can accommodate a family of four, with two adults and two children sharing a large sofa bed. The rooms have been beautifully furnished with teak floors, cream-colored wooden walls, hand-carved furniture and are tied together with wonderful African art pieces.

The bedroom contains a king size bed with ocean view and the room also comes with a plasma screen TV. In the bathroom, there's a walk-in rain head shower and an outdoor shower which views out to the ocean. Each room has a lounge area which opens out to a private balcony. The lounge comes fitted with a bar, sofa bed, and a writing desk. The rooms also come with AC, ceiling fans, hot water, coffee maker, and a laptop room safe. As there are many steps to climb we don't recommend this room for guests with disabilities.


You will get four surfing lessons and two 60-minute massages. The main reason why Hotel Moana chooses the instructors was down to the fact that you'll learn a lot more about surfing when they bring you out. The instructor, Lolo, know all the top and safest breaks in the area. Once you've been taught the basics on the beach, you'll go off to the ocean and up on your board!


Lolo originates from the Mediterranean island of Corsica where he grew up surfing. Lolo is a qualified surf instructor and previously studied marine biology in Guadeloupe, French before moving to Malpais 12 years back. He has been running his school, Adrenalina Surf School in Malpais for many years, teaching thousands of people of all ages how to surf as Lolo knows all the top and safest breaks in the area.


This surf camp will take place at Hotel Moana in Malpais, Costa Rica. Hotel Moana is located in Malpais on the southern tip of the Nicoya Peninsula, on the western seaboard of Costa Rica. The lodge itself is situated up on tree covered hills 200 meters from the Pacific Ocean. In relation to the Malpais area, Moana is halfway between the fishing port and one and a half kilometers from the intersection at Playa Carmen, also known as Frank's corner.

The next major town you'll see on a map is Cobano which is roughly 12 kilometers away from Malpais. Thereafter, lies the town of Paquera (50-minute drive) where the ferry departs (one and a half hours) to the port town of Puntarenas. From Puntarenas, it takes about two hours to drive to the capital, San Jose.

In recent times the area of Malpais has gained notoriety for its secluded and untouched natural beauty added to its great surf breaks. Malpais is, in fact, a quaint little fishing village, with surrounding waters rich in snapper, tuna, and many other types of fish.

Perched at the southern tip of the Nicoya Peninsula, this seaward bending coastline affords vistas all the way up Guanacaste on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica. Tourism has brought some changes with new restaurants and bars popping up, providing travelers with a global choice of cuisine, ranging from Argentinean barbeques to sushi, but essentially things have stayed the same. The landscape here offers rolling green hills rich in vegetation, sandy stretches of beach, and rocky outcroppings ideal for shoreline fishing. Without a doubt, it's a very attractive place to come to relax and to soak up the golden rays of the Pacific sunset or indulge one's self in a range of outdoor activities.

The direct translation of the name Malpais from Spanish into English is in fact bad land. But it is claimed that the name actually derives from the word "Mah Pah ", which was a smooth stone used for drawing by the first people here, the Chorotega Indians. The Cabo Blanco National Reserve is located three kilometers south, which is a paradise for tourists and students of biology and ecology.

Nearby places

  • Cabo Blanco National Reserve, 3 kilometers
  • Cobano, 12 kilometers
  • Pacquera - 50 minutes drive
  • Playa Carmen, 1.5 kilometers
  • The Pacific Ocean, 200 meters



  • Hot tub / Jacuzzi
  • Swimming pool (outdoor)


  • Air-conditioned rooms
  • Concierge desk
  • In-room safe
  • Lounge
  • Mini bar
  • Poolside bar
  • Restaurant


  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Hair dryer
  • Laundry
  • Parking lot
  • Room cleaning
  • Wedding


Hotel Moana is delighted that they are now able to serve you breakfast and dinner in their new ocean view restaurant and bar. While you sit and watch the waves break along the Malpais coastline, you'll be served an ever-changing breakfast containing local fresh fruit and rich native coffee, leaving you with an experience to cherish long after you've returned home.

Then in the evenings, the restaurant truly transforms, with a wide and diverse menu, ambient lighting and Latin music fills the air. Sample one of the deliciously prepared meals from the menu or just lay back at the lounge and choose from Hotel Moana's full bar list or alternatively sip on a freshly prepared cocktail as the sun sets and the waves crash in the background.

The experienced kitchen staff has a vast knowledge of both international and Costa Rican flavors. Bringing their creations to life by combining the freshest and finest of local produce with exotic fruit and vegetables giving diners the chance to experience fine Costa Rican dining with a tropical twist. The Papaya Lounge and Restaurant and Bar is open for breakfast and dinner. The restaurant closes on Tuesdays.

Things to do (optional)

  • Sit back and chill out at the self-service pool bar
  • Stand up paddle boarding
  • Swimming
  • Yoga

What's included

  • 6 surfing lessons
  • 2 60-minute messages
  • 6 nights' accommodation

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Driving directions from Juan Santamaría International Airport (JSM), taking Motorway Route 27

  • From the international airport in San Jose, you'll need to turn right (east) in the direction of San Jose (Route 1) and drive for about 12 kilometers where you will then need to take a right exit for Route 39 for Escazu.
  • You drive along that road for about three kilometers and then take the second exit which will bring you onto the Autopista Prospero Fernandez. You will now be driving west in the direction of Escazu / Santa Ana where you will go through the first toll.
  • You continue to drive past Santa Ana and then follow the signs for Orotina and then the autopiste becomes Route 27.
  • You continue straight all the way to Caldera passing three further tolls and it takes about an hour to reach.
  • Drive through Caldera about 10 kilometers and then you will need to take a right turn for Puntarenas (please keep an eye out for this turn as it's badly marked).
  • From here you drive straight through Puntarenas and continue right to the end of the town where you will find the ferry port to your right, it will also be signposted.
  • From San Jose to the ferry takes about an hour and fifteen minutes. If you take the new motorway you need to be aware that you can only pay in cash, about 7 USD total in the tolls which can be paid in Colons or Dollars.

Driving directions from Juan Santamaría International Airport (JSM), taking Inter American Highway Route 1

  • From the international airport in San Jose, you'll need to turn left (west) which will bring you straight onto the Inter American (Route 1) in the direction of Puntarenas. The highway will bring you all the way to the turnoff for Puntarenas.
  • From the turn off you drive straight through the town of Puntarenas and at the end of the town you'll find the ferry port on your right, it will also be signposted. It takes about two and a half hours to reach the port town of Puntarenas.
  • The old route has no tolls but it's worth knowing that it's a twisty road and it can become quite congested with articulated trucks. It's also poorly lit so we don't suggest driving it after dark.

Driving directions from Paquera

  • When you arrive in Paquera, take the road to Tambor.
  • Continue straight on to Cobano and from Cobano drive to Malpais / Santa Teresa.
  • Finally, take a left turn at the Playa Carmen crossroad and Moana is located one and a half kilometers down on the left-hand side. Driving from Paquera to Malpais takes about one and a half hours and is about 50 kilometers in distance.

Driving directions from Liberia

  • You need to take the Interamericana Highway and headed south and then take the turnoff to the port town of Puntarenas, this will be on your right / west. The journey time is about one and twenty minutes to about a half an hour shorter than doing the journey from San Jose.
  • In Puntarenas, take the ferry to Paquera which is located on the southern tip of the Nicoya Peninsula.

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flight to arrive at Juan Santamaría International Airport (JSM). After that, book your flight to Tambor Airport (TMU). Getting to Malpais / Tambor, from San José by air, you have two airlines that fly daily, Sansa or Nature Air. It costs about 90 USD per person going one way and takes about 30 minutes flying time.

Arrival by ferry

In Puntarenas take the ferry to Paquera which is located on the southern tip of the Nicoya Peninsula. The ferries leave Puntarenas every two hours during the high season and the ride across the Gulf of Nicoya is a scenic one and a half-hour trip.

Arrival by shuttle bus

Hotel Moana can arrange you this service, all that's required is your name and the hotel you’re staying in. From San Jose, it costs 50 USD and takes about five and a half hours. The bus will pick you up in your hotel in San José between 7.30 a.m. and 8.30 a.m. All the buses have A/C and they will stop allowing you to have something to eat.

Arrival by public bus

A direct public runs to Malpais twice daily. It departs from the Parada de San Carlos Station in downtown San Jose, Calle 12, ave 7-9 (but never let your bags out of your sight), it doesnt however stop to pick up passengers at the airport.

Unfortunately the bus schedule changes constantly so Hotel Moana cant offer you exact departure times. Usually, buses depart at 6.30 a.m. and later in the day at 2 p.m., the best thing to do is to call ahead when you arrive in San Jose.

To get to the hotel, you will need to get off at Franks Place when the bus arrives at the cross at Malpais / Santa Teresa. From there, you'll need to walk or take a cab to the hotel which is one and a half kilometers down on your left, headed south from the cross at Franks Place, it costs about 4 USD.

The bus is air conditioned and costs about 14 USD per person and the journey takes about six and a half hours which includes the ferry crossing. Surf boards can also be taken, but bus tickets cannot be prebooked. The bus also makes the return journey to San Jose twice daily.

Airport: Tambor Airport Airport transfer available: Tambor Airport (US$55 per person) Additional charges may apply. You can request this in the next step.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 14% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.
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