This attractive white-sand beach is backed by a pocket of luxuriant vegetation that attracts birds and wildlife. The area has seen little logging, partly because of the nearby wildlife refuge and partly because real estate development - an unlikely sounding combination.
Many houses and condominiums here are lived-in year-round, and other can be rented by the week or month. The permanent occupants are mainly foreign retirees. The expatriate community is interested in protecting some of the forest, which makes Nosara an attractive area to live in, and you can see parrots, toucans, armadillos and monkeys just a few meters away from the beach.
So far there has been a reasonable balance between developing the area and preserving enough habitat to support wildlife. The residents' association has been winning legal battles to keep our large scale development. The hotels and other places to stay are spread out along the coast and a little inland, set unobtrusively into the forest and mixed in with private houses, condos, and a cosmopolitan selection of restaurants.
Note that the village and airport of Nosara are 5 km inland from the beach, and food supplies and gas are available in the village. There are three distinct beaches. The southernmost is Playa Guiones, a long calm stretch of white sand with corals and the best snorkelling opportunities; Playa Pelada, in the middle, is a small crescent with shady trees and a simple restaurant near which you can camp; Playa Nosara, north of the river and hardest to access, has surf. Thus the Nosara area (three beaches, village and airport) is very spread out. there are many unidentified little roads. this makes it hard to get around if you don't know the place - look for hotel and restaurant signs and ask for help.
The post office, police, and Red Cross are all together by the soccer field in the village centre. There is no bank. The Super La Paloma supermarket, midway between the village and the beach, acts a Banco Popular agent on Monday and Friday and will change US dollars and traveller's checks. MasterCard is not accepted in Nosara, but Visa sometimes is.
Information for Surfers:
Playa Nosara has beach breaks with lefts and rights. At Guiones, a white sandy beach there are long rolling perfect lefts and rights. At Olgas there is an inside right point break, good when it is closing out elsewhere. There are several other surfing breaks within walking distance of the above mentioned breaks.