This small village is on the west coast of the peninsula, about 4 km north of Cabo Blanco, in an area that is increasingly popular with surfers. About 2 km or 3 km north of Mal País, next to the attractive Playa Santa Teresa, is a tiny community nicknamed Santa Teresita. The road from Cóbano meets the beach road between the two communities at Frank's Place, with Mal País to the south (left). The Mal País end of the beach is rockier, emptier and good for tide-pool explorations; the Santa Teresa end is sandier and better for surfing. Horses can be rented for the 4 km ride down to Cabo Blanco.
This area has blossomed with new places to stay, and more are opening almost every month. The best route is to take the Paquera ferry-boat from Puntarenas. The second route is by taking the Tempisque Bridge and taking the route Tempisque- San Pablo- Jicaral- Playa Naranjo- Paquera- Cóbano. On rocky shoreline of Mal País the visitor can find coves, capes, platforms and rocky sheets stretching out from sandy portions of the beach. The beach is inhabited by crabs. Ponds of sea- and rainwater pools form individual eco-systems each. The scenery is of great beauty because of its contrasting diversity.
Information for Surfers:
Surfing at Mal País: Here you will find world class left and right breaks and beach breaks with ordinary power between 50 and 150 m long. The bottom is flat rocks with sand. The Swell starts working at 1 to 1.5 m, rising low and mid tide in East and West directions. In Mal País some surfing experience is recommended.
At el El Carmen you'll find a long right and a shorter left surfing over sand. At Santa Teresa the waves are usually bigger than at Carmen and better on low tide. Playa Hermosa has left and right beach breaks. Playa de Los Suecos has a lefthander with a fast take-off followed by a long workable wall. With off-shore winds and size it gets hollow. Punta Barrigona has a long lefthander that wraps around the point turning into a great hotdog wave as it moves through the inside. It needs a lot of swell to work properly. The best time for El Carmen, Santa Teresa and Playa Hermosa is when it is small. At Playas Los Suecos and Punta Barrigona it is best when there is swell. The surfing areas around Mal País are really un-crowded.