Papagayo Area Restaurant Guide

Written by Michael Simons on . Posted in Costa Rica Food, Costa Rica Living, Costa Rica Service Providers, Guanacaste Tourism, Newsletters, Papagayo Region, Playa Hermosa, Playa Ocotal, Playa Panama, Playas del Coco, Vacation in Costa Rica

Papagayo Area Restaurant Guide

An insiders guide to GOOD Restaurants!  We know your top priority is to find the best places to eat while you are here.  Forget Trip Advisor – We have gone to each of these Restaurants multiple times and know the menu’s well.  You will be surprised how many good Restaurants there are in our small little area we call the Papagayo.  We also included Fast Food joints and local markets. ENJOY!

Papagayo Area Restaurant Guide

PLAYAS DEL COCO

Note:  Playas del Coco has so many Restaurants that we had to split the maps by sections:  Downtown, Uptown, La Chorrera, Other and Outside Area.  

Playas del Coco Restaurant Guide By Zone

Download Playas del Coco Downtown Map

Download Playas del Coco Uptown Map

Download Playas del Coco La Chorrera Map

Download Playas del Coco Other Map

Download Playas del Coco Outside Area Map

RESTAURANTS:

DOWNTOWN:

DONDE CLAUDIO Y GLORIA: This adorable little fish place is located right ON THE SAND, just 50 meters north of the main drag. A delightful place to go and people watch, at any time of the day, but is especially perfect for sunset dinner. They have just about every type of seafood imaginable, and it is always fresh. I have never had a bad meal here yet. BEST SEAFOOD in town. ENJOY.  9 ON DOWNTOWN MAP

COCONUTZ: YES, it is a sports bar, and a Green Bay Packers bar at that, with about a dozen TVs, but they have more than just bar food. They have a full menu of just about anything you might want to eat, and a great pizza too and of course the BEST Coconut shrimp. Coconutz is a wonderful place to see Monkeys at 5pm as they are swinging through the trees above; cover your nachos, just in case. Wednesday they have all you can eat, pizza, pasta and salad, along with a movie night, and there is live music many evenings of the week. One of my favorite hangouts for sure; lots of fun. GO GIANTS!!!!  1 ON DOWNTOWN MAP

http://coconutz-costarica.com/

Zi LOUNGE: Serving lunch and dinner, this open air bar has a huge delicious menu, and a perfect place to people watch on the street. He has the BEST steak tacos too! There is wood burned oven pizza, as good as any you have had in other places in the world, and many nights there is live music. After 10 pm this is the place to be, as it becomes a full blown night club, with VIP section and table side service and DJ. The original Chili Guaro inventor, this is a great place for shots too!!!! Thursday is Ladies Night, so come on down and check it out.  2 ON DOWNTOWN MAP

http://www.zilounge.com/

JOHAN BISTRO: Just before you get to the beach, on the main drag, is this great little Bistro. Fantastic designer sandwiches, served on incredible homemade breads, and the display is right out of a magazine; crepes and sushi are also on the menu. They have a huge selection of yummy smoothies and health drinks as well to wash it all down; BEST sandwiches in town. I love this place!!!  O ON DOWNTOWN MAP

COCO PALMS HOTEL: Just a block from the beach, next to the soccer field, this place doesn’t look like much from the outside. But boy, are you in for a surprise when you go inside. They have a gorgeous pool and fountain, and the restaurant surrounds it. Coco Palms has some of the BEST SUSHI in Latin America, and a wide range of other dishes as well. If you go fishing, and make a nice catch, bring it to this hotel and they will cook it up for you and serve it with all the fixings, for a very reasonable price. They also have a 24 hour market at the hotel, so if you need late night stuff, this is the spot. A Massive wine collection as well!  3 ON DOWNTOWN MAP

https://sites.google.com/site/hotelcocopalms/home

Le COQ LEBANESE HEALTH FOOD: This little kiosk has become one of the most popular places to grub in downtown Coco. People come from all over to try their amazing pork, chicken and beef wraps; the BEST wraps ever. Located just below the casino they have some of the freshest and tastiest bites you have ever put in your mouth. They have a Vegan menu too to satisfy all your meat haters. Check it out.  4 ON DOWNTOWN MAP

https://www.facebook.com/LeCoqCostaRica/

PAPAGAYO SEAFOOD: One of the oldest restaurants in town, it is a true classic. You sit upstairs, overlooking the town, so it is a great place to socialize and people watch. They have so much junk hanging from the ceiling; you never get bored checking out the décor. They specialize in Louisiana style seafood, with all the local catches; The BEST gumbo I have ever had, and a multitude of sauces to smother your fish. Lots of choices. 5 ON DOWNTOWN MAP

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Papagayo-Seafood-Restaurant/208427589188823

PAPAGAYO SUSHI BOAT: Just next door to the Papagayo Seafood, is their Sushi boat? Yup: It looks just like a big boat, so you cannot miss it. If only a couple people in your group love sushi, then this is the spot. You can order off the Papagayo Seafood menu next door as well and they will gladly bring it over.  6 ON DOWNTOWN MAP

BAR EL ANCLA: In Spanish, it means “the Anchor” and it is right where the main drag hits the beach. This is one of the more popular afternoon hangouts, as you can see all the families and tourists walking up and down the beach. The menu is all Tapas, or small appetizers, so you can order 2 or 3 things each and fill yourself up; everyone can have a taste this way; and the prices are cheap. They also have some of the COLDEST beer in town and the BEST ceviche in Coco.  7 ON DOWNTOWN MAP

https://www.facebook.com/BAR-El-ANCLA-677278905675432/

BAMBOO BEACH BAR: If you are just looking for a Jimmy Buffet burger bar place, this is it. All the local gringos and Ticos hang here in the afternoon, with “their toes in the sand” and “a drink in their hand.” Dog friendly, and always a good time, the perfect place for a snack and a freezing cold beer; this spot is right on the beach, just a couple meters north of the main drag. Nothing fancy, but most of us are pretty simple folk.  8 ON DOWNTOWN MAP

SODA TERESITA: A true Soda, through and through. A Soda is a local Costa Rican restaurant that serves what is called Typical food. The most common is a Casado which means marriage in Costa Rica. It is a union of food in which it generally consists of a piece of meat (pork, chicken, fish or steak), black beans and white rice with a salad, and many times served alongside plantains and tortillas. YUMMY. Aroz con pollo or aroz con camarones is also a specialty; rice with chicken or shrimp and this place makes a good one. Olman, the owner, has had his restaurant for years and it is one of my favorite places to eat, as it is right on the beach in Playas del Coco. It is next to the soccer field, of course, as he is the coach of our local men’s team. A spectacular place for breakfast, as you can watch the wave’s crash as you enjoy your Gallo Pinto with scrambled eggs. Ask for either the Meat with Sauce or the Chuletas (small pork chops) and tell him I sent you. Make sure you ask for the Salsa Lizano, a local sweet sauce that goes well with everything; don’t be shy, dump it on! 10 ON DOWNTOWN MAP

CASINO BAR:  Every once in a while, I just want to get out of the heat, and into the AC. What better place than the casino bar? They have 4 or 5 TVs that always have a game on, and they have a wonderful, but limited bar menu. The BEST chicken fingers in town and always good looking girls to flirt with. And heh; might as well try your luck on the slot machines while you are in there. It could pay for your entire trip.  A ON DOWNTOWN MAP

LIZARD LOUNGE: The Lizard Lounge is best known for its all night parties, dancing, disco music and alcohol consumption, but it is also a little unknown secret spot for lunch. They have a huge menu actually, and a great place to keep an eye on all the tourists walking up and down the drag. They have the BEST nachos in town and a bundle of other stuff too. If you are really up for partying though, this is one of the best spots in town to dance it up. They stay open until all hours of the night, Boom Boom Booming.  B ON DOWNTOWN MAP

https://www.facebook.com/Lizard-Lounge-139000726187729/

IL GUSTO DELLA VITA (EL GUSTO DE LA VIDA): WOW, is all I can say. They have SPECTACULAR Italian food. Two brothers from Italy, who know how to cook, opened this little romantic spot in the Coco Retail Plaza next to Coconutz Sports Bar. Try the Calamari Pipien; Breaded and stuffed with raisins, pistachios, black olives and garlic. The Rissotto Al Fumo Rosso is also amazing; smoked cheese with red radish. My personal favorite is the Fettuccine Alfredo Sea Food. This place is a MUST visit. C ON DOWNTOWN MAP

https://www.facebook.com/pages/El-Gusto-De-La-Vida/1380005532220628?fref=ts

CASA DEL MAR: This is a great spot for breakfast, lunch or dinner. It is the restaurant associated with the Coco Beach Hotel, so you sit around the swimming pool looking out to the street. A perfect place to people watch and I go here a lot for breakfast. They have a wonderful menu of local seafood’s and meats and many times they have the Weber BBQ going and they cook it right in front of your face by the pool.  D ON DOWNTOWN MAP

 https://www.facebook.com/pages/Casa-Del-Mar-Restaurant-Playas-Del-Coco/459499897411037

SODA JARDIN TROPICAL: Just half a block from the beach, this is a great place for some local grub. DON’T underestimate the little guy. He has wonderfully fresh Typical Style plates, at very inexpensive prices.  E ON DOWNTOWN MAP

FAST FOOD

PIZZA NONNA RINA: Sells it by the slice if you just want a couple pieces as you shop. At the food court on the main drag of Coco.  F ON DOWNTOWN MAP

TASTE OF TEXAS BBQ: This little kiosk located in the Food Court of the Coco Beach Hotel on the main drag, has one of the largest selections of Burgers anywhere. From Hawaiian, to Mushroom and everything in between they are sure to have one that will satisfy your hunger. In my opinion, they have the BEST chicken sandwich in town, which I actually ordered by accident one day: a mistake that I repeat on a regular basis. Q ON DOWNTOWN MAP

COCO STREET FOOD: As you would expect in Latin America, there are always a couple people cooking food on the side of the road. Late at night, after a few too many drinks, a chicken or beef skewer just seems to hit the spot. Now this is living!!!!

COCO SUSHI EXPRESS: On the beach road in Coco, about 200 meters from the strip, is a cute little Sushi spot; fresh and cheap; great TO GO!  P ON DOWNTOWN MAP

KALDI COFFEE BAR: Inside the Coco Retail plaza next to Coconutz, this is the perfect spot for a morning coffee. Sit in the quiet quaint courtyard and enjoy the morning breeze.  G ON DOWNTOWN MAP

TROPICAL FRUIT: Also inside the Coco Retail plaza, is a wonderful smoothie bar. No need to say anything else. These things are YUMMY!  H ON DOWNTOWN MAP

JIMMY’S BURGERS: The original burger shack, Jimmy’s has been here for 20 years. They are open SUPER late, so if you are out on a binge, this should keep you going.  i ON DOWNTOWN MAP

POLLO CRISPY: You will find out very quickly that Costa Rica loves fried chicken. This little spot is located at the Coco / Ocotal turn off.  J ON DOWNTOWN MAP

TICOFFIA COFFEE SHOP: Just below the Casino entrance, a perfect spot to grab a cup of coffee and a Danish.   K ON DOWNTOWN MAP

ICE CREAM

HELADERIA ITALIANA GELATO: Oh My God! I could stop here every single day. This is some of the most insanely good ice cream every created. They have every type of flavor you can imagine: Snickers, Chocolate Chip, Coconutz, Caramel, Sorbet: You name it, they have it. Make sure you stop here after a big meal, it is the perfect ending to a wonderful day.  L ON DOWNTOWN MAP

https://www.facebook.com/Heladeria0039/

POPS: This is Costa Rica’s version of Baskin Robbins. They have a huge selection of ice creams, at super reasonable prices. Located next to Auto Mercado and SUBWAY. The BEST Milkshakes ever.  A ON DOWNTOWN MAP

LOCAL MARKETS

SOLO BUENO: About 50 meters before the beach, on the main drag of Coco, is this wonderful little shop. They make homemade Costa Rican chocolate, and have the best cigar selection in the country.  M DOWNTOWN MAP

https://www.tanktopsflipflops.com/history-playas-del-coco/

COCO PALMS MINI MARKET: Located right next to the soccer field near the beach, this is much more than a typical 7/11. It has a phenomenal selection of wines, one of the best in the area, and just about everything you might possibly need. The best part: it is open 24 HOURS A DAY. I use this place the most, early in the morning, when the grocery stores haven’t opened yet. Many times I am going fishing or on an excursion and need beer and ice for the day at 6 or 7 am. Or late at night, for that midnight snake, since most of the bigger stores close at 8 or 9 pm.  N ON DOWNTOWN MAP

Papagayo Area Restaurant Guide

UPTOWN:

CITRON: Located in the PACIFICO retail village, across from RE/MAX OCEAN VILLAGE. This is considered by many, the nicest restaurant in Playas del Coco. They have an Air Conditioned interior seating, as well as a gorgeous outdoor patio area, so depending on the weather, you can visit anytime. The Master Chef has created a very unique specialized menu to satisfy the most demanding customers. They have everything from fresh salads, to WOK: a wide range of fish and chicken dishes, and one of the BEST steaks you will ever eat. Save room for dessert!!!  1 on UPTOWN MAP

http://www.citroncoco.com/

CONGO CAFE: Located in the PACIFICO retail village, across from RE/MAX OCEAN VILLAGE. This is much more than a coffee shop. They are open for breakfast and lunch, and have a superb menu that will satisfy everyone. Awesome omelets and the BEST smoothies are a great way to start your day, and the sandwiches and salads will definitely leave you wanting to come back for more. They also have a huge boutique store that sells all local products; wood, jewelry, art, clothing and more!!!  3 ON UPTOWN MAP

http://www.costaricacongo.com/

HARD ROCK CAFÉ: Sometimes you just want good old Rock n Roll baby, and this is the place. For some reason, I never get tired of listening to 80’s hair bands LOL. This is definitely a place you have to check out before you leave. They have all the memorabilia hanging on the walls that you come to expect from the franchise, and the famous HRC menu that has made them famous, but they also have a bunch of local flavors as well; the BEST fajitas in town. A massive drink list, allows you to unwind in the A/C after a hot day at the beach. Sexy waiters and waitresses, just add to the ambiance, and a great place to pick up some T-shirts for friends and family back home; lots of live music on the weekends too.  4 ON UPTOWN MAP

http://www.hardrock.com/cafes/guanacaste/

PROVECHO:  Just across the street from the Hard Rock Café is an adorable little outdoor patio bar which is a perfect place to just chill with friends. Relax on the sofas and have a couple tapas and cold beers. Katie the owner has created a phenomenal menu that will make you want to come back again and again. They serve incredible breakfasts; a great way to start your day; and awesome lunch and dinner menu as well. They have the BEST grilled Mahi Melts and rocking margaritas. Very casual and very reasonably priced. 5 ON UPTOWN MAP

SODA LOS PELONES: Right on the main drag, you will find this little Typical restaurant. All these fancy places are nice, but sometimes you just want GOOD FOOD, nothing fancy, at a very inexpensive price. I eat here all the time for lunch.  6 ON UPTOWN MAP

PATO LOCO: As you are coming into Coco you will see this cute little hotel on the left that has some of the best breakfast in town. Mary the owner, has homemade Italian sausage patties, fresh baked dark breads and the INSANELY good Biscuits and sausage gravy, as good as anything served in the South. Come hungry!!!!  E ON UPTOWN MAP

http://www.patolocoinn.com/

MURPHY’S SPORTS BAR: This cute little dive bar, actually has some GREAT Mexican food. The back room is Air conditioned so on those hot afternoons, you will find a little relief. A very popular little hangout with the gringos.  7 ON UPTOWN MAP

FAST FOOD

CHORO TACOS: In the parking lot of the Luperon grocery store, is one of the best taco stands you will find ANYWHERE. Very reasonably priced, and with a bundle of options, this is a great place to grab a couple tacos to go; you will be back!!!!  8 ON UPTOWN MAP

SODA EL OASIS: This cart has a huge selection of burgers and sandwiches and super-fast service, and is a great place to sit and watch the craziness go by.  9 ON UPTOWN MAP

SUBWAY: Yup! Coco has a SUBWAY franchise, and it tastes exactly like home. Sometimes you just want a good reliable sandwich, especially if you are traveling with kids. One of my secret pieces of advice: order a couple sandwiches TO GO on the day you leave. You are allowed to take food through the metal detector at the airport and on to the plane. This way you don’t have to pay the exorbitant prices for food at the Liberia airport before you board. See the eyes of your fellow passengers explode, when you take a bite out of your BMT sandwich as they suffer through a bag of peanuts. 10 ON UPTOWN MAP

LOCAL MARKETS

PANADERIA TICOS BAKERY: If you think your grandma can bake, you ain’t seen nothing yet! Some of the best pastries, Danishes and donuts you have ever tasted.  B ON UPTOWN MAP

PANADERIA TUTU: Hot fresh bread, right out of the oven, every single day, and you can smell it half way down the block.  C ON UPTOWN MAP

BACCO LIQUOR STORE: Maybe it is because I am a professional drinker, and maybe it is because we love to party in Costa Rica, but I have come to truly appreciate a great liquor store. Across from the Hard Rock Café, this place has a MASSIVE selection. YES, the grocery stores sell alcohol, but they usually are limited in their stock. This guy has EVERYTHING and at very fair prices. OPEN LATE for those of us with a drinking problem.      D ON UPTOWN MAP

playas-del-coco-restaurant-map-uptown

LA CHORRERA:

PACIFICO BEACH CLUB: Although this is a private beach club for property owners at PACIFICO, the restaurant is open to the public and it is awesome. They have some of the best food I have ever eaten, and they change the menu regularly, so it never gets old. Ceviche, fish tacos, Mexican salad and Flatbreads are just some of my favorites, along with the BEST roasted chicken wrap, salmon, sushi and the biggest club sandwich around; keeps me coming back on a regular basis. The restaurant is air conditioned, and has a beautiful setting looking out to sea, with table cloths and excellent service. A MUST place to eat.  A ON LA CHORRERA MAP

http://www.pacifico-costarica.com/beach-club/

CAFÉ DE PLAYA: If you want: Beach; sunset; good food; romantic evening; THIS is the spot. As you enter the gate and wander through their garden and out to the beach, you are speechless. The entire restaurant is literally sitting RIGHT ON THE SAND, and the menu is delightful. It is a very relaxed setting, with an amazing view, and they have different specials every single night, so you never get tired of coming back; BEST sunset dinner in townB ON LA CHORRERA MAP

http://www.cafedeplaya.com/

KAIXO: People have been RAVING about this little hidden gem. At the entrance to the Las Palmas condo development is a little courtyard called PUEBLITO SUR. There are 4 restaurant in this little plaza and a great place to socialize. Kaixo has all kinds of delicious treats on their menu. Breakfast omelettes and French Toast; gourmet sandwiches and toasts; Tapas that melt in your mouth; and a wide array of spectacular dinners. You have to try the VEAL MEATBALLS, and the GRILLED SALMON, two of my personal favorites. It is also an art gallery and a great place to pick up specialty bags of coffee.  C ON LA CHORRERA MAP

https://www.facebook.com/kaixo.costarica/

SODA MEDITERRANEAN:  Also in the PUEBLITO SUR, this is one of the most consistent restaurants in Coco. If you want a SURE thing, go here. Everything on the menu is made fresh every day; with an incredible array of unique Mediterranean dishes. Many of the dishes are served table side, so they prepare it right in front of your eye.  You cannot go wrong.  D ON LA CHORRERA MAP

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Soda-Mediterranean-El-Coco-Costa-Rica/305008409579025

LUNA DE PLATA BISTRO CREPERIE: I told you before, PUEBLITO SUR, is a super cool spot for restaurants. This adorable little café Bistro, has wonderful Crepes, bagels and fresh salads, and a wide selection of delicious sandwiches. E ON LA CHORRERA MAP

https://www.facebook.com/Bistro-Creperie-Luna-de-Plata-178930155468766/

LA DOLCE VITA: This Italian restaurant is the 4th in the group in PUEBLITO SUR. It has been around the longest, and is some of the most consistent Italian food in town. I personally love to go for lunch as they have a spectacular lunch buffet at a very reasonable price. The BEST Minestrone soup and the BEST lasagna.  F ON LA CHORRERA MAP

http://www.ladolcevitacostarica.com/

CHE SIRLOIN: Go here for huge BBQ Burgers and Argentinian style Steaks.  The prices are right and the Husband and Wife team cook and serve you everything fresh and right on the spot.  The is also in the PUEBLITO SUR.  G ON LA CHORRERA MAP

https://www.facebook.com/CheSirloin

SAPORTO NAPLES PIZZA: Located at the entrance to Las Palmas.  i ON LA CHORRERA MAP

SENOR PIZZA: On the north side of Las Palmas as you head up to Hermosa on the back road.  H ON LA CHORRERA MAP

FAST FOOD

CAFÉ JAVA: This is a great little coffee shop, and a perfect place to start your day. They have wonderful breakfast and lunch sandwiches and a huge selection of smoothies. Sit outside in the courtyard on their comfy sofas and chairs; they are located at the entrance to Las Palmas.  J ON LA CHORRERA MAP

LOCAL MARKETS

LAS PALMAS MEAT MARKET: They sell the same meat, with a small mark up in price, for the convenience of being located at the entrance to Las Palmas; worth the extra couple bucks to save you a drive to the airport.    L ON LA CHORRERA MAP

PESCADERIA FISH MARKET: If you like fresh seafood you have to come and get it here! Their daily catch products are 100% fresh! Mahi Mahi, Sea Bass, Grouper, Red Snapper, Parrot fish, Yellow Fin Tuna, Lobster, Jumbo Shrimp, Octopus, Crabs and Peeled Shrimp! Quality and good service. They also have 6 different types of ceviche prepared right in front of you. Right next to Senor Pizza in Coco Beach.  M ON LA CHORRERA MAP

https://www.facebook.com/marazulpescaderiaelcoco/?pnref=lhc

playas-del-coco-restaurant-map-la-chorrera-copy

OTHER:

VILLA ITALIA: Do NOT come to Coco without going here for dinner. Basically, what you do is you go to this nice Italian couple’s house. They have a restaurant on their back patio and around their swimming pool and they serve you a full blown Italian dinner, better than anything you might have in Little Italy NYC. Way too many mouthwatering dishes to list right here. You DEFINITELY need reservations as this is one of the most popular restaurants in town, and a place you will want to go back to over and over again.  A ON OTHER MAP

http://www.villaitaliacostarica.com/en/

THE LOOKOUT SEAFOOD AND OYSTER BAR: Up on top of a hill, way above Coco, in a place called Vista Marina, is a little boutique hotel called Hotel Chantel. On the roof of this adorable little place, is one of the more popular places to go for sunset and happy hour. With their own micro brewed craft beers, and a full array of wines and cocktails, you can enjoy the BEST Oysters in Costa Rica; and many other fantastic seafood platters.  B ON OTHER MAP

http://thelookoutcoco.com/

MILANES: As you come into Playas del Coco, you will see Milanes on your left. It is one of the oldest restaurants in town, and they have the BEST fish soup I have ever had. I love to go to the local restaurants, away from the all the tourists and gringos, and just sit back and enjoy a great meal. Nothing fancy, no fluff, just fantastic seafood and VERY inexpensive.  C ON OTHER MAP

SANTORINI “GREEK” RESTAURANT: If you have never visited Coco Bay Estates, put it on your list. This gorgeous development has 5 star amenities and this spectacular restaurant is open to the public. Sit on their expansive covered terrace and look out at one of the sexiest swimming pools ever built. The owner Serge has created one of the more unique menus in town, and people are lining up. Moussaka; Authentic Greek dish with beef and eggplant, is my personal #1 choice. The BEST chipotle burger with just a little bite, will fire up your taste buds. The most popular dish on the menu, though, is the Greco Chicken; a succulent breast with eggplant, tomato sauce, cheese and spinach; BAM!!!  D ON OTHER MAP

PIZZERIA LA CAVEJA: Take the road from Coco towards Ocotal, about 1 kilometer in.  F ON OTHER MAP

LOCAL MARKETS

PANAMAR FISH MARKET: The best fresh fish market in the area, with every kind of local catch imaginable. On the left as you are coming into Coco, about 300 meters before the Auto Mercado Grocery store. K ON OTHER MAP

FARMERS MARKET: Take the road from Coco to Ocotal. About 300 meters in, just past the Coco school is one of the cutest little markets around; Farm fresh fruits and vegetables, at dirt cheap prices. Support your local farmer.   N ON OTHER MAP

playas-del-coco-restaurant-map-other-copy

OUTSIDE AREA:

 

CAPTAIN MORGAN: Maybe it is because I am a pirate at heart, or maybe because I love the rum, but the first time I saw this name, I had to stop. And I have been back 100 times. It is a little Costa Rican restaurant at the entrance to the Nascascol hotel, with a wonderful selection of local flavors. I especially love their lunch specials, as they have the BEST chicken plate around. Very reasonably priced too and never crowded. H ON OUTSIDE AREA MAP

HONG CHINESE FOOD: Are you kidding me? Chinese food in Costa Rica? Yes, it is true and very good. The owner is from Hong Kong and has about a dozen of the most popular Chinese dishes that you are accustomed to back home. Fantastic Won Ton soup and I love the Sweet and Sour Chicken. Located at the turn to the RIU Hotel, just a few hundred meters from the Sardinal Mobil Gas Station. Sometimes, you just want to stay in, watch a movie and eat Chinese. Just like home.  i ON OUTSIDE AREA MAP

https://www.facebook.com/Restaurante-HONG-759885347386032/

POLLO LOCO: I know you think I am crazy putting a Tico Fried Chicken place on this list, but this is the BEST FRIED CHICKEN I have ever had! I am NOT kidding! If Colonel Sanders was alive today, he would steal this recipe. Located in the center of Sardinal, next to the police station, is this little wood shack. How good is it? I have a client who is a retired Professional NHL player. He has 3 sons, who are up and coming soon to be professional hockey stars. These 4 men can eat some food, let me tell you. Every time they come to their condo in Hermosa, they drive the 15 minutes to Sardinal and buy EVERY single piece of chicken this woman has. So if you go, and see a bunch of large muscular white guys, cut in front of the line LOL. J ON OUTSIDE AREA MAP

LOCAL MARKETS

CARNES SAN MARTIN MEAT MARKET: The finest selection of meats anywhere in Latin America. Located in the Solarium retail center, across from the Liberia airport, you can literally buy an entire loin for the price of one or two steaks in North America; and much higher quality meat.  L ON OUTSIDE AREA MAP

http://www.carnesanmartincr.com/

ISLENA ITALIAN MARKET: Located in Guardia, behind the Adobe Car Rental office, this Italian market has everything you would find in a big city; from fresh basil and mozzarella, to Italian meats and pastas and sauces. Ooooohhhh Mama Mia!!!!!  M ON OUTSIDE AREA MAP

outside-area-restaurant-map

PLAYA HERMOSA 

Download Playa Hermosa Restaurant Map    Download Playa Hermosa Restaurant Guide

GINGER: Considered by many, the BEST RESTAURANT in Guanacaste, you cannot visit the Papagayo without a trip to Ginger. Located on the main road in Playa Hermosa, up high amongst the trees, it specializes in Asian Tapas. The owner Anne has traveled all over the world, to bring back unique and creative dishes and flavors. THE BEST spring rolls, THE BEST firecracker shrimps and the BEST Ahi tuna are just a few of their signature dishes. They also have the largest selection of Martinis and Desserts that will BLOW YOU AWAY. You will be back more than once during your vacation. Definitely, you need a reservation.  1 ON MAP

http://www.gingercostarica.com/

VILLA DEL SUENO HOTEL:  My personal favorite restaurant in Costa Rica. The owners, Claude and Sylvia, are French Canadian and it shows in the quality of their service. One of the few places I would call Fine Dining, and the perfect place to spend an evening. They have THE BEST STEAK in Costa Rica, with a Three Peppercorn Sauce that will rock your taste buds. They also have incredible Pasta dishes, Fish dishes and Salads and Desserts that will keep you coming back. Live Music on the weekends in the high season; do not come to Playa Hermosa without making a special trip to this little hotel. Located on the first entrance to the beach.  2 ON MAP

http://villadelsueno.com/home-en/

SANDBAR: A unique progressive Gastro Pub experience, right here in Playa Hermosa. This little sports bar is located on the upper level of a super cool Octagon building, on the main road of Playa Hermosa. They have the BEST burgers in Costa Rica: Instead of your usual, Lettuce, Tomato and Onion, their burgers are unique and packed with power. They have an incredible menu filled with everything: Chicken, Cuban and Meatball sandwiches, Watermelon salad, chicken wings and their signature BACON ROLL keep people coming back. Saturday night is STEAK NIGHT and they have a mind boggling SUNDAY BRUNCH, with bottomless mimosas and world famous Bloody Mary’s: you can even get one with a slider on top. The owner Kent is my oldest friend in the world; we have been pals since Junior High, so please stop by and say hi. Oh, and if you like spicy ChiliGuaro shots, THIS IS THE SPOT. They are located next to the Hermosa Theatre too, so a great place to grab a bite before or after the movie. Only for dinner: Open late.  3 ON MAP

http://www.sandbarcostarica.com/

EL VELERO HOTEL: El Velero means the Sailboat in Spanish, and you can see the original moored out in the bay. Most people know that this hotel is called my Second office, as I eat there almost every single day as it is THE BEST BEACH BREAKFAST in Playa Hermosa. Nothing starts your day, like a cup of their rocket fuel coffee, extra crispy bacon, fresh squeeze OJ and Farm Fresh Eggs, while the waves crash in background just a few meters away. For lunch, try the Mahi Mahi Sandwich, ceviche or chicken stir fry, and a Cold Pilsen beer. They also have the BEST BEACH BBQ, as they fire up the grill every Wednesday and Saturday nights, cooking all the local catch right out on the beach over a big open flamed grill. The BEST LOBSTER, served as a Surf and Turf, is my personal favorite. Say hi to the owner Big Mike, and tell him I sent you. He has been a staple here in the area for over 20 years. Take the second beach entrance and go all the way to the sand, turn right and go 25 meters.  4 ON MAP

http://www.costaricahotel.net/

ROBERTO’S: BEST SUNSET restaurant in Playa Hermosa. This little B&B is right on the sand, facing Dead West. OUTSTANDING menu for lunch and dinner; with great fish specials every single night; and they have live music and open Mike Nights as well. They also have the BEST STEAK BURRITO in town, and the chicken A La Diabla is my personal favorite plate. Saturdays are Two for One Tenderloin Shish Ka Bob, and Mondays are Rib night. If you ask nice, the Owners Robert, Bette and Dawson might let you go up to their rooftop swimming pool to see the green flash of the sun. Just 50 meters north of the second beach entrance.  5 ON MAP

http://www.lagaviotatropical.com/

EL QUIJOTE: BEST SUSHI in Playa Hermosa, this adorable little seafood place is down the second beach entrance on the right hand side. Famous for their Special Rolls, Niguiri and Sashimi, they also have the BEST CALAMARI. If you are a fisherman, this is the perfect place to bring your daily catch, as they will prepare it for you any way you like. The owners are always there to greet you.  6 ON MAP

https://www.facebook.com/elquijotebarandrestaurant/?fref=ts

RESTAURANTE y PIZZERIA BOCELLI: An adorable little Italian restaurant down the first entrance in Playa Hermosa. The sign says BEST PIZZA, which is baked in a wood burned oven (sooo delicious and crispy), but they have much more than that. The BEST RAVIOLI, multiple choices for Pasta and a wonderful Calzone are just the beginning. They have a large selection of Italian and South American wines and probably the largest display of International Liquors anywhere in the country. If there is a certain Scotch or Bourbon, Vodka or After Dinner drink you are craving, this is DEFINITELY the place you will find it. The famous Andrea Bocelli is usually playing in the background creating a wonderful, tranquil meal.  7 ON MAP

https://villasplayahermosa.com/en/bocelli-eng.html

BOSQUE DEL MAR HOTEL: The coolest setting around. This hotel was built with total attention to detail and the environment. It is truly a jungle setting, as HUGE Guanacaste trees are literally growing right up through the middle of the floor. Monkeys and Parrots are always in the canopy, adding to the lovely relaxed setting on the beach. Serving Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner it is a favorite for Ticos and Ex Pats a like. The second floor bar is an amazing place to sit while watching the wave’s crash below. The Omelet station in the morning is also a very nice touch. Also the massage girls are always out front on the beach. Nothing like a relaxing rub down after a good meal.  8 ON MAP

http://www.hotelplayahermosa.com/

LA CASITA DEL MARISCO: The little fish house is exactly what it says. A little house, right on the beach in Playa Hermosa, with some of the best local fish cuisine you will ever taste. Nothing fancy, but these kinds of places tend to have the best food and flavors you could ever imagine, and these guys don’t let you down. Sit right on the sand, on a wood or plastic table and enjoy some of the most incredibly fresh seafood that has ever been pulled out of the sea. The BEST SEAFOOD soup, CRISPY RED SNAPPER and GRILLED STUFFED FISH OF THE DAY, are some of my personal favorite plates. If you like a spicy dish, try the MAHI MAHI VERACRUZ STYLE. All the way to the north end of the beach, you won’t be disappointed.  9 ON MAP

https://www.facebook.com/La-Casita-del-Marisco-1419135485019501/

AQUA SPORT: This is where you go to party on the beach. Dead center of Playa Hermosa, this is more of a lounge than a restaurant, although they have REALLY GOOD FOOD. Like most places here, they specialize in seafood and Latin American dishes, but they also have one of the largest Vegetarian and Vegan Menus in the area. Imagine, sofas and recliners, placed haphazardly in the sand, DJ playing tunes, waves crashing, moon shining, sipping on a cocktail; I got my toes in the sand and a drink in my hand. Yup, that is Aqua Sport.  10 ON MAP

https://www.facebook.com/aquasportcr/

MANGABY HOTEL: An adorable little hotel located down the second entrance to the beach. They have a cute little setting overlooking their waterfall pool and garden. Mangaby is a wonderful place to grab a quick bite to eat, especially if you are on a budget; try the shrimp with rice, or ceviche, two of my personal favorites. The staff is super friendly and very attentive.  A ON MAP

http://www.hotelmangaby.com/

PESCADO LOCO: A true Tico style fish restaurant. This little spot is the hangout for the local fisherman and tour operators. Sit on a wood stool and enjoy some ice cold beers and a plate of grilled fish; the perfect way to spend a couple hours in the afternoon. Just behind El Velero hotel.  B ON MAP

LA VENTANA DEL RANCHITOS:  This adorable little house is located just next door to the LUPERON grocery store on the main road of Hermosa. They have good pizza, great burgers, fried chicken, ceviche and more. A great spot for a quick snack or pizza to go.  C ON MAP

Papagayo Area Restaurant Guide

PLAYA PANAMA

Download Playa Panama Restaurant Map      Download Playa Panama Restaurant Guide

ABBOCATO: Located on the Las Trancas Road inside Hacienda del Mar Casa Club. Specializing in Mediterranean, Spanish and Asian food this restaurant has one of the best ambiances in Costa Rica. Enjoy AMAZING Sunsets over the Pacifico Ocean; the perfect place to celebrate an Anniversary or any other special event; very romantic spot as well.  Chefs Paola and Andrea really get it done. Call for reservations as it is almost always full. This is truly one of the nicest restaurants in all of Costa Rica. DO NOT come to this area without eating at this restaurant.

1 ON MAP

 http://www.abbocatocr.com/

EL MANGROOVE HOTEL AUTOGRAPH COLLECTION: Right on the beach in Playa Panama, this boutique hotel by Marriott is a phenomenal place to enjoy a meal. They have indoor A/C seating and outdoor terrace tables as well, with picturesque views over their pool out towards Panama Bay. Great for breakfast, lunch or dinner, the service and quality is FIRST CLASS. They have two restaurants, which scream “come in please” and “stay a while longer” all at the same time. MAKOKO is elegant, inspiring, creative and contemporary cuisine, using the latest culinary tendencies. MATISS is the beach side grill with a landslide of flavors and a great place to people watch on the sand. One of my all-time favorites for brunch as well.

2 ON MAP

 http://elmangroove.net/experience/gastronomy/

CASA CONDE DEL MAR HOTEL: I love this little hotel, located right on the sand in Playa Panama. The property has massive Guanacaste trees, creating a super cool canopy environment. The restaurant has a great selection of Local and North American food, but you just can’t beach the location and feel. See the boats sailing into the famous Papagayo Marina right in front of your eyes; Great Sunset spot as well.
3 ON MAP

http://casacondebeach.com/bar-y-restaurante

 

Papagayo Area Restaurant Guide

OCOTAL

Download Ocotal Restaurant Guide       Download Ocotal Restaurant Map

FATHER ROOSTER: Located RIGHT on the beach in Ocotal this classic restaurant still stands in basically the same spot as when it was built 100 years ago.  Yes, it has obviously been renovated, but still has the feel of a true beach shack, with wood boards and all. Without a doubt, this locale is a MUST VISIT for anyone coming to the Papagayo. With tables and chairs stuck right into the sand, you can watch all the fishing boats, and snorkelers as you soak up the sun. Known for the BEST FISH TACOS and WORLD CLASS MARGARITAS, people flock for miles around to suck these puppies back. I personally adore the FILET MIGNON SHISKABOB and a fresh MOJITO for dinner, and I never pass up the chance for true FISH N CHIPS; with Malt Vinegar. YUMMY!!! Christina the owner is always there, so tell her I said Hi. ENJOY. You will not be disappointed, I promise.

https://www.facebook.com/FatherRooster/

PICANTE:  You have to travel all the way through Ocotal and over the hill to Bahia Pez Vela resort, but it is worth the drive when you get there. Located inside the resort, this restaurant is just steps from one of the coolest little black sand beaches in the area. It overlooks the swimming pool and out to sea, and you can hear the waves crash as you eat. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It has a wide variety of food on the menu, from Typical to Mexican, but my personal favorite is the Cashew Chicken.

OCOTAL RESORT:  Closed as of December 2016.  Opening soon. Quite possibly the greatest view ANYWHERE, this hotel literally hangs off the cliff. The views are 270 degrees of the Papagayo Bay.  On a clear day you can see all the way to the Santa Rosa National Park and is a great platform for whale watching, at certain times of year. Perfect sunset spot. ENJOY.

Ocotal Restaurant Map

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Comments (4)

  • Janet Behanick

    |

    Mike, this is FANTASTIC! Lots of new places (to us) to check out! What a great resource to forward to our friends that go down to this beautiful area!

    Reply

  • Roger

    |

    We also like La Caveja for pizza
    and ” fettuccine a la Caveja” is a favorite of mine

    Reply

  • Alice

    |

    Thank you. This is great.

    Reply

  • Karina

    |

    Hola! Thanks for mentioning our name to your list. As a matter of fact TICOFFIA is a Specialty Coffee Shop. As our customer you will discover with our baristas some of the best coffee cup profiles in Costa Rica. Pour overs, latte art, great Ice coffees and why not a danish as a
    Compliment for a great coffee is part of our menu! Pura vida!

    Reply

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