The One in Playa Tambor

I would just like to start off my post by saying that yes, Mom and Dad, Abbey and I went by ourselves without a whole group of people or with guys to Playa Tambor and we survived (as I knew we would).

Playa Tambor, otherwise known as Tambor Beach, is a quaint little beach town on the Nicoya Peninsula of Costa Rica. I’m not going to lie, for our one-night stay it was perfect, but it would be very difficult to spend any more time there. With its 3 restaurants, one bar, supermarket, and our hostel, all the place really has going for itself is the beach. Luckily, that’s all we cared about!

Our trip started muy temprano at 5:15 on Saturday morning. We took a bus from San Ramón to Puntarenas and then waited about three hours for the 9 o’clock ferry. The ferry is 70 minutes, but with wind blowing in our hair and the smell of the salt water in the air, there wasn’t much to be annoyed about. After the ferry docked, we hopped on a bus and it was about 40 minutes until we got off in Tambor and our two friends continued to Montezuma.


Immediately after checking into our hostel, Abbey and I headed out to the beach and were very happy to realize it was only a minute walk. As I’ve mentioned before in my other blog posts, it’s days like these in Costa Rica that accurately describe Pura Vida – laying on the beach with the sun shining above you, listening to music, and hearing the waves repetitively crash.


High tide was in late afternoon and since we were running out of area to lay our towels down, we put our items back in our room and walked along the beach and to the nearby pier. Dinner was at a small restaurant named El Tronco across from where the bus dropped us off. The fact that we’d seen this place have only 4 customers the entire day worried us a little, but it was either that or cereal from the supermarket, so we risked it. I ordered the ceviche de pescado (fish ceviche) and Abbey ordered garlic spaghetti and we could not have been more pleased. You usually don’t imagine Costa Rica, especially a small town on the coast, for having good pasta but this chef deserves some Food Network Channel award or something for how well he prepared it. The ceviche was so fresh and the plantain chips that came with it were crispy and fried (so really, what’s not to like from that combo?). I had recently been to Peru and it was interesting to compare to two ceviche dishes I had tasted – different types of fish were used and the Costa Rican dish was more of a “soup” served with a spoon, but both were equally as delicious.


After spending our evening eating from a tub of vanilla ice cream we bought at the supermarket (honestly, I’m not even sorry about this purchase), we hung out at the beach the next day until we headed to go home. We caught up with our friends on the bus that arrived 45 minutes late and (after glaring at the bus driver, hoping it’d make him drive faster) arrived at the ferry with only 10 minutes to spare. Never have I been more stressed that I could potentially miss my ride and have to wait another 3 hours for the next one. 70 minutes later we were on the bus and back to reality (but is being on a 5-week trip in Costa Rica really reality?) in San Ramón.

Stay tuned for what we decide to do this week and weekend! My birthday’s on Sunday – I’m turning 20 in Costa Rica, so no matter what I do, I know it’ll be memorable.


One thought on “The One in Playa Tambor

  1. Erin –

    So glad you made it through the weekend without a large support group and a collection of men to act as body guards. We weren’t terribly worried… just enough to make you at least think of being safe. It’s what parents do.

    We look forward to your return to the States. American cuisine, burgers, ribs, Rice Krispie treats, etc., with A/C and hot water for showers will be waiting.

    Mom and Dad

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