Guest Reviews & Testimonials

Find out what our guests are saying about their time with Surfing Costa Rica Pura Vida.
Don't just take our word, see first hand how guests felt about the waves in Santa Teresa, their instructor and their overall time in Costa Rica. If you would like to see more reviews, find out what guests are saying on Trip Advisor.


surfing costa ricaOur group had an absolute blast taking surfing lessons from Cesar! His focus was on all of our safety first, then we tackled the waves.Fantastic experience , most beautiful beach in Costa Rica and some big surf to go along with it. The girls did now want the lesson to end…….Thank you Cesar and Surfing Costa Rica Pura Vida.  Once in a lifetime vacation with the best surf instructor on the beach.
Craig from New York



surf familyCouldn’t have asked for anything more from my first surfing experience! I had always wanted to attempt surfing and Pura Vida was recommended by a friend. I was very nervous to travel alone but Cesar helped make planning the trip very easy with the detailed instructions online and speedy replies to email.

I was picked up from the tiny airport in Tambor and was shown around the small town that would be my home for the next few days. After settling into the hotel (Ritmo Tropical – very clean comfortable residence with a great restaurant and friendly staff, short walk to the beach) my first surf experience began. Cesar gave simple but complete instructions on surf safety and beginner technique. And while I failed miserably on the first day Cesar was very patient and continued to review the technique with encouragement and without judgement. By the second day I managed to stand with some consistency in the ‘white water’! My performance over the next few days was variable but each day new pointers were given and my confidence and comfort dramatically improved.

I saw lots of other people being taught to surf while in Playa Carmen/Hermosa. None of the other instructors even came close to Cesar’s attention and instruction. All their students seemed to flounder in the surf with little direction and little opportunity to stand on a wave. I, on the other hand, was put on to wave after wave after wave. . .

Cesar was also very helpful in arranging excursions outside of surfing. I loved my zip line adventure!

All in all it was definitely a trip I’d recommend! I always felt completely safe, well taken care of and free to enjoy the experience as it best suited me!! ☺️☀️
Kelly from U.S.


santa teresa surfcampOur family is so happy to have found Cesar and his crew. Like Chip G said Cesar takes hospitality to a new level, he finds a way to make each person feel like a part of his family and makes the trip completely unforgettable. Everyone at Surfing Costa Rica Pura Vida is fully dedicated to what they are doing and it showed with their ability to get us up on our surf boards riding waves right away. Cesar even showed me how to do a headstand on my surfboard! His ability to communicate goes unmatched in our experience. We came home with more knowledge about the country and the culture of Costa rica, fantastic pictures, great surfing skills to build on, and the itch to come back as soon as possible.
-Michelle from Canada


surf camp This was my first trip down to Costa Rica with a close friend, and I couldn’t have had a better experience! Everything from booking the trip, getting picked up at the airport, and the daily surf sessions with Cesar were amazing. As a new traveler, the crew and other guests not only made us feel welcome, but I can honestly say I made some friends that I will keep in touch with in the future.
Enough cannot be said about the instructors. My friend and I had no experience, but after a great introduction and assessment, the instructors were able to tailor the lessons to our level. Not only is it clear that the crew love what they do, they love watching you catch every wave and surpass all of your surfing expectations, as well!
We were treated like family by the crew, not just tourists. They genuinely wanted to tell us about the area and showed us around to really get the best experience, which was so refreshing and beyond our expectations for this trip!
I would definitely recommend booking with Surfing Costa Rica-Pura Vida. I’ve suggested for all of my friends to book with Cesar and his crew, many are following through within the next few months. All you need to do is show up with good vibes and they will take care of the rest :) An amazing experience I will ever forget and hope for others to experience too!
-Brittany from Ottawa, Canada



Surf camp Mal paisWhat a treat! I came to Santa Teresa with the intentions of relaxing, enjoying the beach and learning to surf. I’ve lived in coastal surf towns most of my life yet never took the time to learn, and so I arrived determined. I was however a bit disappointed when I got into town during peak and found that most of the surf instruction companies were large groups of 6-12 people and for the 2 hours you pay for it didn’t seem like I was really going to get my money’s worth. Then fate had me cross paths with Cesar and my Costa Rica dreams came true. He picked us up each morning, provided excellent rash guards and boards to learn on, and took us to an ideal beach away from the hot spots downtown. And on top of this he was an amazing instructor! Very knowledgeable and dedicated to making sure you learn the right way. He’s supportive and helpful but pushes you to adapt and challenge. He’s quite the character and his approach is entertaining and sometimes intense. By our third lesson I was paddling out, standing up and riding the wave all on my own, I couldn’t be more proud by that accomplishment. I had such a positive experience that I’m hoping to continue my practice back in California. I highly recommend you align with Cesar if you have any desires to learn to surf while in Santa Teresa, I know I will if I have the opportunity to return. Pura Vida!
-Emily from L.A. California


Adam having a great week with the family at Surfing Costa Rica Pura Vida in Santa Teresa Costa Rica. Perfect waves and weather see you guys next year!

Jeff Galiotto Learning to surf in Santa Teresa

Jeff first time surfing and gets up on the first wave in Santa Teresa Costa Rica with Surfing costa Rica Pura Vida. Learn to surf in paradise.


surf lessons mal paisAt surfingcostaricapuravida Cesar has his priorities straight. Surfing. Catered to you. If you really want to learn how to surf and become independent, he will push you to get it done. Detailed critique and constant strategy each day builds up on the previous where a new task accomplished quickly turns into a new challenge to master. Santa Teresa is an incredible laid back location with amazing breaks for every level and an unadultered small town vibe. Together with his defined character, comic charm and life philosophy Cesar is a talented and dedicated surf instructor with the knowledge and the desire to teach. Every single day I looked forward to class and every single day I became a better surfer. I feel lucky to have learned from him and I will forever hear his voice in my head as I paddle out. Pura vida
-Christie from Puerto Rico


surf mal paisI have been surfing for almost thirty years so I didn’t really need an instructor as much as someone to show me around. Cesar knows his stuff, his local knowledge of waves and different conditions can not be beat. I felt like I was in good hands the entire time and got to surf great waves with hardly any crowds. I even got to learn about my surfing style watching the videos that Cesar was taking and critiquing my moves each day with a seasoned professional. If you are a beginner, and intermediate or an advance surfer you have something to gain from an adventure with Surfing Costa Rica Pura Vida. -Ricky from Costa Rica

Tilde From Norway