Santa Teresa is the best place in Costa Rica because you can do both in the same day
So you’ve surfed all morning in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica and now, you’re back at your hotel – exhausted – and your wife is looking at you with her big, bored eyes. “What are we going to do for the afternoon in Santa Teresa post-surf?” she asks. Well, there are plenty of really fun things to do in Santa Teresa including one of my personal favourite Costa Rican activities. It is an activity that allows you to explore a nearby community, interact with some local Costa Ricans and best of all, it is a place where you can buy all the fixing for the delicious dinner that you are going to prepare for your lovely wife later that night. What is it you ask? A visit to the fish market just outside Santa Teresa in Mal Pais, Costa Rica.
The drive alone to the fish market is great. If you are staying with us at the Blue Surf Sanctuary in the northern part of Santa Teresa, you get to drive through all of the lovely little communities that line the southern tip of the Nicoya Peninsula in Costa Rica. From our hotel, you drive through downtown Santa Teresa and passed the bustling town center where you can see the entire town hustling about around the football field and the local school. As you continue to drive south, you will then next pass through Playa Carmen – a popular and very busy community just outside of Santa Teresa that is littered with tasty restaurants, shops and cafes. The beach here is also well worth a stop as it is a great place for grab a ceviche and watch people as they come and go. From there, continue south passed the Cruce into Mal Pais. Once you cross over into Mal Pais from the Cruce, instantly it feels like a different world. The hotels and restaurants slowly start to fade out of view and what is left is a lovely little community and empty, beautiful beaches. Keep driving all the way through Mal Pais to the very end. Pass the church, the only convenience store in town and the football field. Soon after the cemetery, you will be at the end of the road and you have arrived at the magical Mal Pais Fish Market.
Once you get to the market, here is where the fun really begins. Take your time and soak it all in. Check out all the fishermen’s well-worn boats and watch the fishermen, as they are hard at work mending their nets, repainting their boats or bringing in their days catch. If you are lucky and you happen to be there as they are hauling in their catch, you can watch as the fishermen clean and gut the gigantic ocean fish that they caught. I’ve seen humongous snapper, enormous jack fish, gorgeous roosterfish, delicious yellow fin tunas and so much more. Enjoy every minute of it and don’t forget to buy your dinner! Trust me… your wife and your kids will love it. The Mal Pais fish market is as authentic as it gets here in Costa Rica and it is a great post-surf activity for the whole family here in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica.
Surf and Fish in Costa Rica
Here are some photos and a video of the Mal Pais fish market and some local fishermen in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica: