Frequently Asked Questions
Over the years we have encountered a number of common questions and concerns. Below we do our best to shed some light and perspective on some of these reoccurring themes.
When do you offer your SUP Camps?
As we do not offer SUP Camps every week we make our choices to maximize the probability there will be ideal conditions for SUP Surf progression. Our peak season runs from November to April, this is our Costa Rican summer. Seasonal weather patterns typically bring us another brief summer season in July and August, we take advantage of that and offer camps then too. You can see our upcoming weeks on the Availability page of our website.
When is the best time to come?
Really any of our dates are great and learning how to deal with the given conditions is a big part of what will increase you confidence and make you a better SUP Surfer. Our peak season runs each year from November thru April.
The Nosara area gets consistent surf year round, what changes is the frequency and cleanliness of sizable incoming swells. November to April is our dry season where we see little rain, it’s our summer and high season. November to February we typically see 2’ - 5’ surf with an occasional 2 - 3 day swell that pumps it up a bit bigger. During this time we also get offshore winds, most days they blow light to moderate, perfect for grooming the ocean and holding up the wave face. There are windows in this time when the winds can blow much harder, on occasion 30 – 35mph gusts. This typically coincides with harsh winter storms on the east coast of the United States. March and April tend to mark the beginning of the south swell season, and we still have the favorable winds. May to October begin seeing consistently head to overhead swells, at times coming in clean and at other times it’s a bit mixed up. May, June, Sept and October are the rainiest months; at the moment we don’t operate in Costa Rica during those periods. The rains generally lighten up for our brief summer season in July and August and the surf is super fun.
How do I confirm my spot?
To confirm your spot we ask for a 50% deposit and request the balance to be paid 60 days before your SUP Camp start date. Just let us know of your interest and we will get you the link to make the payment and confirm your dates.
What are the travel days?
Our SUP Camp dates extend from Saturday to Saturday. These Saturday’s are the travel days. Most folks arrive in Liberia between 11am and 4pm. However, we will make sure you are picked up whenever you arrive. Late Saturday afternoon we find it helpful to do a brief orientation about the week followed by dinner around 6:30pm. We hit the water early Sunday morning.
Will you still pick us up if we arrive early?
Yes. Some guests prefer to arrive a day or two early. Although we typically will not be able to offer accommodation for early arrivals we can recommend a number of well-located hotels in Nosara and will coordinate a Saturday local pick-up time.
I’m traveling alone, is that possible?
Yes. More than half our guests are solo travelers their first time. Often times they bring a friend or spouse during return trips.
I’m a women traveling alone, is it safe?
Traveling alone can be a daunting task. We do our best to make the entire process of getting to our SUP Camp home as smooth as possible. We make sure to have a trusted driver pick you up at the airport and we are here on site to welcome you upon arrival. Costa Rica is known as a safe country and Nosara itself is quiet safe. Interesting to note, nearly all of our female guests travel alone.
What are the accommodations like?
Surrounded by lush Costa Rican jungle the property has beautiful rooms with a private bath, A/C, WiFi, first-rate outdoor dining and plenty of relaxation space and gardens around the pool. Here are some photos.
Can I get my own accommodations and only come for the coaching?
Due to the nature of the week as a concentrated SUP Surf coaching experience we don’t do offsite options or drop-ins. Between surfing, video, nutrition and onsite coaching we’ve found it just doesn’t give the dialed experience we’ve found to maximize the opportunity to get better in a short time. If you'd like we can provide some local contacts that help organize day trips and individual SUP surf sessions.
How far is the beach and town from your SUP Camp home?
Both the beach and town are no more than a 5 - 10 min walk from our spot. The Nosara area is located in a protected refugee that does not allow building within 200 meters of the beach. Often times we'll walk over to the beach for either a sunset session or to simply relax in great company while witnessing specular sunsets.
What kind of food can I expect?
Authentic local foods, freshly squeezed natural juices, fun barbeques, organic ingredients, energizing snacks and bocas; all are included in your package. We rely on talented local chefs to plan and prepare your meals. More info.
I’m a vegetarian, will that be a problem?
No. Before arriving we ask to be informed of any dietary restrictions and do our best to accommodate. We have dealt with allergies, gluten-free requirements, no dairy, veganism, etc… While we do our best to meet your needs it will be your responsibility to double check and verify, particularly if there is an allergy.
How many guests are in your SUP Camp?
Our entire team firmly believes in quality over quantity. To this end our typical SUP Camp caters to no more than 8 guests. There are occasions when we open the week to more and close it to less. In no case will the SUP Coaching quality or experience be diminished due to numbers.
Do you offer your SUP Camp during dates not listed on your website?
Yes. These are private SUP Camp weeks, typically reserved for families, groups of friends or active corporate retreats. If you or your company is interested in booking a week please Contact Us.
Are payments refundable?
Our SUP Camp spaces are very limited and often times book up more than three months in advance. This requires significant advanced planning and we aim to operate each week to the highest level of success and guest satisfaction. Therefore, unless we can resell your space all payments are non-refundable. If we are able to resell your space we will happily refund you all monies paid less a 10% administration fee.
Do you recommend travel insurance?
We strongly advise that you have adequate travel insurance both to cover any medical costs which you may incur while traveling abroad but also to cover any amounts you have already paid to us in the event of a cancellation. We have always been will to help with providing an invoice, letter, and/or whatever’s required to validate a legitimate claim. The most common reason for a last minute cancellation is personal injury or a death in the family, to that end we advise you verify that your insurer will cover these instances.
Regarding supplemental coverage, Travel Guard is a known company in the industry and they offer a variety of travel insurance products. Here is a link where you can customize your information and get a quick quote. You have options of just getting the supplemental MedEvac coverage or the entire Trip/Medical Insurance.
Do ocean sessions ever get canceled?
As safety is a priority we reserve the right to cancel an ocean session. Generally there are only two reasons we have done so. One is lightning and the other is unsafe wind. In this case we make up the coaching time with workshops and/or video sessions.
What do you do in the off months?
In May and September we offer satellite coaching weeks where we host our SUP Camp outside Costa Rica. In May we go to Nicaragua. We are currently evaluating a September destination. These satellite weeks are open to former guests, most have spent multiple weeks with us in Costa Rica.
How long have you been doing SUP Camps?
We successfully tested the original SUP Camp concept in February 2012; over half of these original guests still join us every year. Growing with the market, we have steadily increased the number of weeks we operate each year since. Nearly all of the original team is still with us.
Do I need vaccinations?
Although not essential or required, it’s always sensible to have your Hep A and B up to date when traveling. The W.H.O. recommends Malaria immunizations for all of Costa Rica.
What about crime in Costa Rica?
There is petty crime anywhere you choose to travel in the World. Costa Rica is no exception. Common sense provides basic guidance; do not wear flashy jewelry, do not flash large amounts of money, keep valuables locked up and don’t leave them unattended.
Are there sharks?
As far as we know, there has never been a reported shark attack at Playa Guiones.
Are there mosquitoes?
As a whole this area of Costa Rica is not too bad with mosquitoes. We see an increase during the transition of seasons: from the wet to the dry season (November) or the dry to the wet season (April/May). Additionally the mosquitos and no-see-ums (gnats) like to come out for the sunsets at the beach. If you’re sensitive it’s always good to bring repellant.
What about ATMs and currency?
There is a 24-hour ATM close by that accepts Visa. US dollars are accepted everywhere in the Nosara area