Overlooking the crescent bay of Carrillo
Eight km south of Samara you find one of Costa Rica's most beautiful beaches. The wide crescent bay of Playa Carrillo looks
almost Caribbean with its white-sand beach lined by coconut palms and clear, turquoise waters.
The bay of Carrillo is protected on both sides by rocky headlands so that the water is calm and well suited swimming and snorkeling.
The luxurious beach boulevard in Carrillo
A luxurious 2-lane boulevard parallels the beach and you find easy parking for your car along with picnic tables and chairs shaded by palm trees.
Apart from that the beach of Carrillo is delightfully undeveloped: no buildings, hotels or restaurants spoil the tropical paradise flair.
Only on weekends and holidays it can become a bit crowded with Costa Rican families enjoying beach life.
Sunset in Carrillo
At the southern end of the bay the road climbs uphill into the small village where you find grocery stores, tour agents and a nice selection of hotels in Carrillo.
A nice lookout point is at the hairpin bend in the middle of the road uphill.
From here you enjoy the best sunset views of Carrillo, or you can descend the steep little road to the port.
Puerto Carrillo is nestled in a rocky cove that offers safe mooring for the sport fishing fleet of Samara.
Fishing boats in Puerto Carrillo
In Carrillo you also find the animal shelter La Selva Zoo and Bromelia Garden which houses coatis, monkeys, porcupines, vampire bats, and other animals that you will rarely seen in the wild. Best time for visiting is around 4 pm which is the feeding time for the animals
Carrillo offers a great alternative for travelers who prefer a quiet, scenic beach spot while still being near the action in Samara.
All hotels in Carrillo are located uphill, along with some restaurants and bars.
» Map of Carrillo with Hotels
South of Carrillo and Samara:
Road maps and area information