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Salsa Brava Surf Guide


Salsa Brava Surf Guide

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Surf Spot: Salsa Brava
Break Type: Reef coral
Difficulty Level: Experienced surfers
Best Swell Direction: East
Ride Direction: Right
Tides: All tides


Salsa Brava is one of the most challenging and dangerous surf spots in the world. Found on the Caribbean Coast of Costa Rica in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, the thrilling surf spot draws thousands of surf enthusiasts from all over the world. Puerto Viejo is a small coastal village located in Limon Province. Offering a variety of adventurous activities, the town has become a tourist hot spot in the recent years. While hardcore surfers spend their time riding the sensational waves, non-surfers can indulge in many other sporty activities. Salsa Brava is a dream come true for any wave rider. It is said to be the most powerful break in Costa Rica. The name of legendary break is roughly translated as ‘angry sauce’ which quite suits it. Salsa Brava is a powerful and heavy reef break boasting a Hawaiian style barrels and juice. The break is definitely not for novices and intermediate surfers. It is only suitable for seasoned and professional surfers. Beginners can surf in other spots located nearby the break. The waves are good to ride throughout the year but the months between December and March offer the biggest surf.Puerto Viejo 1

The notorious Salsa Brava is a right hand reef break featuring fast, hollow and powerful waves. It breaks over a sharp reef bottom. It is recommended that surfers wear helmets for protection. The waves are very consistent and mostly short ranging from 50 to 150 meters. The epic waves team up with big swells from the east and winds from the south creating a strong and heavy Hawaiian style barrel waves. The surf develops in deep water and bursts over a shallow reef with a fast and long right. The swells build up at 5 feet holding up to more than 16 feet.

Salsa Brava has a few drawbacks. The road to Puerto Viejo is difficult to access but if you really wish to brave the waves then it is worth a trouble. The break is always super crowded on weekends and weekdays alike. Again, you can wait patiently for your turn to ride. There are many rocks, undertows and rips so watch out for them. If you overlook these three obstacles, Salsa Brava is quite awesome and fun.

Surf Camps

There are many surf camps in Puerto Viejo that offer surf lessons in Salsa Brava. Crocodile Surf Camp and Beachfront Cabins is a budget friendly surf camp which has been in the business since 2008. For advanced surfers, Tamandua Surf Lodge, located minutes away from Salsa Brava is great. Totem Hotel Beach Resort, Surf For Life and Puerto Viejo Surf Adventures are also great. You will also find many surf shops along the beach from where you can rent or buy a surfboard and other gear.

Surf Forecast

Surf Adventures in Salsa Brava, Costa Rica

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