Skip to content
Close (esc)


Use this popup to embed a mailing list sign up form. Alternatively use it as a simple call to action with a link to a product or a page.

Getting to The Beaches Near San Juan

How to Get to the Surf Beaches from San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

San Juan del Sur, a charming coastal town in Nicaragua, is a prime destination for surfers of all levels. With its laid-back vibe, stunning sunsets, and a variety of nearby great surf beaches nearby, it's a haven for those seeking waves and relaxation. Here's a guide on how to get to some of the best surfing beaches from San Juan del Sur.

Nearby Surf Beaches

Playa Maderas

Distance: 9 kilometers north of San Juan del Sur

What to Expect: Playa Maderas is one of the most popular surf spots in Nicaragua, known for its consistent waves suitable for all levels. The downside is there are often a big crowds - by Nicaraguan standards. There are surf schools and board rentals available on the beach. After your surf session, enjoy a meal at one of the beachfront eateries.

Playa Remanso

Distance: 6 kilometers south of San Juan del Sur

What to Expect: Playa Remanso is typically a smaller, more manageable break, making it an excellent spot for beginners and intermediate surfers. However, when the swell is big and lines up you can also get big barreling lefts and long rights peeling from both points to the beach. It's typically a bit quieter than Maderas, but it has been getting busier in recent years. Surf lessons and board rentals are also available and there are also a few nice places to grab some food and drinks.

Playa Hermosa

Distance: 12 kilometers south of San Juan del Sur

What to Expect: Playa Hermosa is aptly named, offering a beautiful and expansive beach with great waves for surfers of all skill levels. It’s less crowded and more serene, perfect for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle. There is an entrance fee of about 100 cordobas (about $3), which includes access to amenities like restrooms and shaded areas. You can also find rental boards here, but there is only one rental outfit and selection is limited.

Playa Yankee

Distance: 15 kilometers south of San Juan del Sur

What to Expect: Playa Yankee is a more advanced break, with powerful waves and strong currents. It's less frequented, offering a more secluded experience. This beach is ideal for experienced surfers looking for a challenge, but only works with the right conditions. It's also a ways from town so it's best to only head here if you know it's going to be working.

Lesser Known Surf Beaches

For those seeking to escape the crowds and discover hidden gems, there are several lesser-known beaches near San Juan del Sur that also offer excellent surfing conditions which sometimes comes at the price of more difficult access. These beaches are less crowded, providing a more peaceful surfing experience.

To explore these 'secret' spots, consider using our Wave of the Day Shuttle, which typically heads to lesser-known breaks in search of the best waves based on the current conditions. This service is perfect for surfers looking to maximize their chances of catching the best waves away from the more crowded spots. Check the Ocean Fly Surf Shuttle Schedule here.

Transportation Options

Shuttles to Surf Beaches

Casa Oro Shuttle: Casa Oro, a well-known hostel in San Juan del Sur, offers reliable shuttle services to several beaches, with several trips to Playa Maderas each day as well as one morning run to Playa Remanso, and Playa Hermosa back each day. The shuttles run at fixed times every day, ensuring consistent access to these popular surf spots, but it's luck of the draw when it comes to wave conditions. Check the Casa Oro Shuttle Schedule here.

Ocean Fly Surf Shop's Wave of the Day Shuttle: We offer a unique "Wave of the Day" shuttle service, which stands out by seeking the best waves at nearby beaches each day. The shuttle provides local knowledge for the best chance of catching good waves and visits lesser-known beaches that regular shuttles might not access. This flexibility and expertise make it an excellent choice for surfers looking to maximize their surfing experience. Check the Ocean Fly Surf Shuttle Schedule here. Although we don't offer surf lessons, we'll give everyone a quick run down at the break so you know where to wait and what to watch out for.


Taxis are readily available in San Juan del Sur and can take you to any of the nearby beaches. Prices vary depending on the destination:

  • Playa Maderas: $15-20 one way
  • Playa Remanso: $10-15 one way
  • Playa Hermosa: $20-25 one way
  • Playa Yankee: $20-25 one way
A lot of taxi drivers are willing to wait at the beach for you for several hours for just a small additional fee

Rental Cars and Scooters

Renting a car or scooter gives you the most flexibility to explore multiple beaches at your own pace. Several rental agencies in town offer vehicles suitable for navigating the sometimes rough roads leading to these beaches. Our recommendation is Rent A Nica because of their well maintained fleet, professional honest service, and competitive pricing. Be sure to rent a car with good clearance if you plan to visit any of the beaches of the beaten path, as the road can be challenging, especially during the rainy season.

Surf Schools and Board Rentals

Surf Schools

Several surf schools operate in San Juan del Sur and provide transportation to the beaches as part of their packages. Notable surf schools include:

  • Makako Surf: These guys just opened up and have training space for four and seven-day programs that include equal in water and out of water sessions, daily transport to beaches, and custom surf experiences upon request.
  • High Tide Surf: Run by one of San Juan's best and friendliest surfers, Jeynner Granados, this is a great spot to arrange a lesson or a longer-term surf coaching to take your surfing to the next level.
  • Tribu Surf: A super solid surf school with a great team and well maintained equipment. These guys probably take out more people surfers than anyone in Nicaragua and there is a reason they're popular.

Board Rentals

Most beaches, including Playa Maderas and Playa Remanso, have surf shops that rent out boards and gear. Prices are reasonable, and for beginners it's easy to a suitable board. For more advanced surfers you'll likely be disappointed in the selection available at the beaches. It is best to bring your own board or rent a board in town. We offer premium Surfboard Rentals with nearly new, top brands like Firewire, Haydenshapes, JS and Torq. Check out our selection of boards and reserve yours here.

Tips for Surfing in San Juan del Sur

  • Check Surf Reports: Before heading out, check local surf reports for wave conditions and tides.
  • Sun Protection: The Nicaraguan sun can be intense. Bring plenty of sunscreen (we sell an awesome surf zinc in our shop), a hat, and a rash guard to protect yourself from sunburn.
  • Stay Hydrated: Always carry water to stay hydrated, especially after long surfing sessions.
  • Respect Local Customs: Be respectful of local customs and the environment. Dispose of trash properly and be mindful of local surf etiquette.

San Juan del Sur is the perfect base for exploring some of Nicaragua's best surfing beaches. Whether you're a seasoned surfer or a beginner looking to catch your first wave, the variety of beaches and convenient transportation options make it easy to enjoy this surfing paradise.

Older Post
Newer Post
Back to top

Shopping Cart

Your cart is currently empty

Shop now