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Preparing For Your Surf Lesson

Have a Positive Attitude

The number one rule for preparing for your surf lesson is having a positive mindset. Surfing is about one thing above all else: having fun! Keeping an open mindset will keep you positive and focused on enjoying your surf lesson experience. By going into your surf lesson with a negative or apprehensive mindset, you are setting the tone for the rest of the lesson and it may not be as rewarding.

Be Confident

Go into your surf lesson with confidence. The first step to learning how to do something is believing you can. If you think you are going to be able to surf than there is nothing holding you back. I you think you’re capable of learning to surf than it will be easier to accomplish. Stay confident and you will be successful.

Preparing For Your Surf Lesson

Good Vibes Only

Mother Nature always Has the Final Say

Surfing is different than most sports in many ways. The waves and conditions are changing constantly throughout the day. Some days we can know exactly what the conditions should look like, but other days mother nature throws us a wildcard. Surfing demands a lot more patience than other sports because at the end of the day, the conditions will ultimately make the decision. Sometimes the forecast can read like an incredible beach day, but by the time you get there it is be so foggy that you can’t even see the waves. This is one barrier that, unfortunately, preparing for a surf lesson cannot necessarily help you with, but it can prepare you for the potential that conditions may not be favorable for a successful lesson. 

preparing for surf lesson

Understand Surfing Isn’t Easy

One of the best things about surfing is that is forces you to be in the moment. The ocean will not stop for you and it will make you have to work hard to be able to conquer it. You can be preparing for your surf lesson for months but it might take some time to learn, just like riding a bike.  You can’t expect to immediately be a pro surfer or never fall, making mistakes is key to learning how to surf faster. Surfing new spots can be tricky. That’s why it is so important to learn to surf at a good beginner surf spot.

That’s why we hold all our surf lessons at Bolsa Chica in Huntington Beach. Quite, simple it is the place to learn to surf in the area. In fact, we’ll go so far as to say it’s the place place to learn to surf in all of California.

Learn Why Bolsa Chica is the Best Beginner Surf Spot in California

The best surfer is the one having the most fun, and most of the time that isn’t the one who is the best in the  lineup.

Preparing For Your Surf Lesson

Positive

Physical Capabilities

Knowing how to swim is one of the biggest keys for preparing for your surf lesson. If you don’t know how to swim it will be a little scary while trying to learn how to surf but if you tell us ahead of time we can make arrangements for helping you learn. Here are some workouts you can do to prepare for you surf lesson. Swimming: Swimming can help build up your endurance for paddling in the water, the more endurance your arms have the easier it will be to catch waves and the more you will catch. You would be surprised that surfing is actually 90% paddling, so having good paddling endurance is a good first step.  Yoga is another activity that will help you while learning how to surf. The more flexible you are the easier it will be to learn how to stand up and the easier standing up is for you the more energy you will have to surf longer. When learning how to surf I would also look up videos or read blogs about the basics of learning how to surf to give you some insight before your lesson. 

Preparing For Your Surf Lesson

Yoga

Plan in Advance

The last thing you want to do is run late for a surf lesson. It takes some time to sign in, put sunscreen on, throw a wet suit on your body, and walk down to the water’s edge, so planning to arrive on time is crucial. On top of that the instructor most likely has another lesson booked immediately after yours and every lesson must run on time, regardless of arrival time. The longer you have with your instructor the more time you have to learn how to surf.  Knowing Huntington Beach, you never know if there are events going on or maybe the freeways have traffic, so you need to make sure that you look ahead of time so you can plan your departure time accordingly. You also want to know what to pack for a day at the beach  so you don’t run into any conflicts. Another step to prepare for your surf lesson is to be well rested and eat a good meal before coming to the beach. A good meal doesn’t mean eating a lot of food, while that may fill you up it will up, it will also make you feel sick when doing exercise in the ocean. Not eating at all will make your body feel fatigued and you may end up feeling sick, therefore stopping the lesson. Just a small to moderate sized, nutrient dense food will better prepare your body for the lesson.

Surfing Quote Jon Kabat Zinn

Which Costa Rica Airport is the Best to Fly Into

In Costa Rica, there are two main international airports to choose from: San Jose (SJO) and Liberia (LIR). We recommend selecting the one that best suits your budget and geographical needs based on what area you plan to spend most of your time. Since these two airports are located far from each other and offer different benefits for travelers, here is a quick breakdown to help you decide which one you should use when flying into Costa Rica.

If  you are trying to get to Corky Carroll’s Costa Rica Surf Resort Liberia International Airport will be closer than San Jose International Airport. Read below for details on travel times to and from the resort.

Here are the two main airports and the difference between locations.

Map of Liberia to San Jose Airport

Liberia International Airport

Located in northern Costa Rica within the Guanacaste Province and near the Pacific Ocean is Liberia International Airport. (Also known as Daniel Oduber Quirós International Airport.)

“LIR” is the second main international airport in Costa Rica. It is situated right next to Liberia City. Just over an hours drive from some of the most picturesque and popular beaches in the country, Liberia is an excellent choice for those looking to soak up the sun with perfect surf breaks and miles of soft sand.

Liberia International Airport Costa Rica

Over the past 10 years, the Guanacaste region has grown to be a top tourist destination for travelers visiting the scenic and less crowded Northwestern coastline of Costa Rica’s Pacific Ocean. This is where you’ll find some of the best all-inclusive resorts, laid-back boutique hotels, and affordable surf hostels that Costa Rica has to offer, along with biodiverse national parks and watersports. It’s also the closest and most convenient airport for guests staying at our privately-owned surf ranch in Nosara, as the drive takes around 2.5 hours (compared to 5-6 hours if transferring to/from San Jose).

Liberia International Airport Entrance

It’s worth mentioning that this airport recently underwent major renovations and improvements in 2012 and 2018 to make traveling even easier. And unlike the rough unpaved roads around San Jose, the well paved roads near Liberia make for a smoother ride with less traffic. If you’re headed to Guanacaste for the beaches, resorts, mountain corridor, or Nicoya Peninsula, the Liberia International Airport is the one to consider.

Liberia is the Best Choice For:

  • Beaches & Surfing
  • Avellanas
  • Coco
  • Flamingo
  • Grande
  • La Fortuna
  • Montaverde
  • Nosara
  • Ocotal
  • Playa Conchal
  • Playa Hermosa
  • Riu
  • Tamarindo
  • BoardMembers Surf Ranch – Nosara
  • Four Seasons Resort
  • The Hilton
  • The Westin Golf Resort – Playa Conchal

San Jose International Airport

Centrally located near Costa Rica’s bustling capital city of San Jose is SJO, the prime airport for tourists visiting the Central and Southwest regions of the country. It’s full official name is the Juan Santamaría International Airport.

This airport provides easy access to nature, local culture, and beaches set on the south end of Costa Rica’s Pacific Ocean. It’s also about 30 mins away from a variety of accommodations from budget-friendly hostels to high-end resorts.

San Jose International Airport Costa Rica

If you’re flying on a budget, you might want to consider SJO as an alternative to the smaller and sometimes pricier LIR airport mentioned above. Flights can be $300+ cheaper than flying into Liberia. But the price of cheaper flights is often times offset by the high cost of local transportation like bus or taxi transfers to and from the area, which can cost upwards of $200+ per ride.

If you are staying closer to Liberia or Nosara, it will take 4-6 hours of riding on busses or driving on hectic, high-traffic, rough roads to reach your destination from San Jose. SJO is also a 5 hour drive from our surf resort; nearly twice the distance as Liberia airport.

San Jose International Airport could be the better option for those on a tight budget and have extra time to spare getting around.

San Jose is the Best Choice For:

  • Budget-conscious traveling
  • Exploring the hub of local culture and city life
  • Close to nature & wildlife activities
  • Beaches in the South
  • Dominical
  • Jaco Beach
  • La Fortuna (Arenal Volcano)
  • Manuel Antonio
  • Montaverde
  • Puerto Viejo
  • Punta Arenas
  • Tortuguero
  • Uvita
  • DoubleTree Resort – Central Pacific
  • Los Suenos Marriott Ocean & Golf Resort
  • Radisson San Jose

Inside San Jose Airport

Traveling to Corky Carroll’s Costa Rica Surf Resort

Arrivals into Costa Rica

We provide a complimentary van service to our all-inclusive surf resort in Nosara from both airports, using the transportation service CRIC (Costa Rica International Connections). The drivers speak English and Spanish and will wait for you to arrive, even if flights are delayed. If customs or baggage claim is taking a long time, don’t worry, the driver will wait for you.

As mentioned above, Liberia (LIR) is the closest airport to us. When arriving into Liberia please allow 2-3 hours driving time to get to our resort from the airport.

If you choose to fly into San Jose (SJO), please plan on the ride taking 4-5 hours from the airport to our resort.

Once you arrive at the airport of your choice and gather your bags, you will be greeted outside the airport by one of our drivers holding a sign with our logo and your name on it. Like this:

Costa Rica Surf Resort Shuttle Service Driver

If you are arriving late into either Liberia or San Jose airport, and plan on staying in a hotel nearby for your first night, we will pick you up at your hotel in the morning. Our driver will be waiting outside your hotel a sign with our logo and your name on it.

Departures from Costa Rica

If you are staying at our resort and your departure flight is out of Liberia, we recommend allowing for three hours travel time to the airport and two hours for flight check-in. If your departure flight is out of San Jose, we recommend planning five hours for travel time and two hours for flight check-in.

Once you have booked your flights, we handle the rest. We provide transportation to and from the airport, so you can start you vacation the second you step off the plane. Best of all if you arrive early enough, we’ll have you out in the water surfing before the sun goes down. For more transportation information check out our surf resort FAQs page.

Conclusion

If you’re still unsure which Costa Rica airport is best to fly into, the two most important factors to keep in mind are time and budget.

Liberia is closer to some of the best surfing beaches in the country but flights can be more expensive. San Jose is closer to nature activities and the hustle and bustle of the capital city with generally cheaper flights, but has more expensive local transportation.

Regardless of which airport you choose, you’re bound to fall in love with everything the spectacular country of Costa Rica has to offer. We’ll see in you in paradise!