Costa Rica’s Playa Hermosa has been awarded the next ‘World Surfing Reserve’, becoming the first beach in Central America to hold this prestigious title and the world’s thirteenth. Costa Rica joins the likes of the Gold Coast in Australia and Malibu in California, positioning itself as a world leader in surfing.

Playa Hermosa, on the central Pacific coast of Costa Rica, is renowned for having some of the most consistent waves in the world and for holding the ISA World Surf Championship in 2009. Running some 5 miles long, it is one of the country’s most popular surfing beaches, welcoming surf enthusiasts from around the world every year.

Playa Hermosa has been added to the list of World Surfing Reserves due to its world-class waves, the rich biodiversity of the area, strong community support and a clear conservation vision.

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World Surfing Reserves (WSR) is a programme created by Save The Waves, an international non-profit organisation dedicated to protecting surf ecosystems across the world. The programme serves as a model for preserving wave breaks and their surrounding areas by recognising and protecting the key environmental, cultural and economic attributes of surfing areas. Every year, a wider variety of surf communities across the globe submit an application to receive the WSR title, which is awarded to just one destination.

Gustavo Segura Sancho, Costa Rica’s Tourism Minister, said, “We are thrilled that our beautiful Playa Hermosa has been added to the prestigious WSR list. With more than 900 miles of coastline and ideal surfing conditions year-round, Costa Rica offers a wealth of surfing opportunities for both novices and experienced surfers.”

Four zones comprise surfing in Costa Rica: the Caribbean coast and the Northern, Southern, and Central Pacific coasts. The Pacific coast boasts the most surfing locations, the majority of which are found in the north western province of Guanacaste, where Playa Hermosa is located.

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