10 Fascinating Central American Beaches


Every time I think of the beaches of Central America, sugar soft white sands, ocean waters and swaying palm trees come to my mind. In fact, this is a very typical image, especially on the Caribbean coast, but Central American beaches, including Pacific coast beaches, also throw up rough surf breaks and vast swathes of black sand. Take a look at a list of the most fascinating beaches of Central America.

1. Maya Beach, Belize

One of the great beach towns in Belize, Placencia offers one of the most beautiful beaches in the country. There’s some development here, but there are no main sprawling resorts.

Maya Beach is on a strip between the Caribbean Sea and the Placencia Lagoon, the sand is cashmere soft, and the water is clear and blue. Thanks to the mild Mediterranean climate, comfortable swimming temperatures are observed here for six months – from May to early November. This is an enjoyable place at high tide, great for walking along the coast.

If you are looking for the beaches of Central America and like the idea of Belize, then Maya Beach will be the best choice. One of the reasons is that remoteness from big cities and popular tourist places has left its mark on Maia Beach in the form of a quiet and secluded holiday.

How to get to Maya Beach?

Firstly, you can get there by car. From Agios Theodoros to the beach by car is about 5 km. Drive along Ellados Avenue. If you are coming from Larnaca, first take the F401 road, then E405 and E321. The journey will take about 23 minutes.

The second way to get there is by using a taxi. This type of transport will greatly facilitate movement around the island.

2. Playa Balandra, Mexico

As you know, Mexico boasts the most fascinating beaches not only in Central America, but in the world as well. With more than 450 beaches spread between the Caribbean and Pacific coasts, it isn’t easy to choose the best one.

Surrounded by mountains, Playa Balandra in La Paz boasts warm water and fine and soft sand. What I like the most is that you can walk out into the turquoise blue water for a pretty long distance. Here you can ride kayaks and watch the concentrations of small fish that swim in schools in shallow water.

In total, there are several beaches within one bay, so you can always find a fairly secluded place. Despite the beach’s remote location, there are many people here on weekends on this beach of Central America.

How to get to Playa Balandra?

First of all, you should fly to Los Cabos international airport (SJD). Then take a bus to the city of La Paz. From La Paz, Balandra Beach can be reached by bus or minibus “collectivos”. There is a huge free parking lot right next to the beach, so it is especially convenient to drive here by car.

More: 11 Most Beautiful Beaches Worth Visiting

3. Trujillo, Honduras

Honduras’s Pacific coast boasts many beautiful beaches, but they are windswept and with huge surf. So while the fabulous beaches of the Bay Islands are among the best beaches in Central America, the beaches of Honduras’ Caribbean coast are really amazing! Trujillo is a place of excellent beaches and sea activities, not crowded with noisy tourists.

Trujillo is not crowded. Noisy crowds gather only in June for the festival, which is held every year. The rest of the time, you can safely enjoy the sparkling sun, green Cordillera, and the sound of the surf on the seashore.

Trujillo is perfect if you appreciate the relaxed, calm, and laid-back lifestyle and if you do not mind the three-hour bus ride to reach it. But the main reason is the fascinating view of the Caribbean sea and, as well as the mountains of Capiro and Calentura.

How to get to Trujillo?

Trujillo is located in northern Honduras on the Caribbean coast. The country’s capital, the city of Tegucigalpa, is separated by 243 km. You can overcome them with the help of a taxi, regular buses or rented vehicles. To do this, you should move along the routes RN-15, N-39, N-41, and N-43. With moderate traffic, the entire journey takes about 8 hours.

More: 9 Fabulous Gay-Friendly Beaches in the World

4. Monterrico, Guatemala

Monterrico is one of the most famous black sand coasts in Guatemala. Most locals come here on weekends. However, recently the resort has become more popular among foreigners. The main feature of the beach is black volcanic sand. At low tide, it is better not to swim far, as even experienced swimmers can not cope with the current.

It’s located in a nature reserve area, and there’s an animal sanctuary nearby that focuses mainly on turtle conservation. Most places in Guatemala are being developed to draw more tourists. It’s a perfect place to relax and simply enjoy your life.

How to get to Monterrico?

In the beginning, you should fly to Guatemala International Airport (GUA). Then by taxi to Monterrico. Getting there by bus with transfers is also a possible way. It’s cheaper, but a long way.

More: 9 Most Beautiful Beaches in Turkey

5. Punta Chame, Panama

The wonderful Punta Chame is one of Central America’s best-kept secrets. Situated on a peninsula approximately 90 minutes from Panama City, it’s the dreadful road leading to the beach that probably keeps it from being the perfect place for most tourists. A vast area is covered with light, almost white, volcanic sand that seems deserted compared to other coast beaches. Considering the distance from the city and its beauty, this is certainly a beach to be savored.

This majestic beach also provides tourists with a great variety of outdoor activities. Quite a powerful surf and wind provide excellent conditions for windsurfing and kiteboarding, so fans of these extreme entertainments successfully use the opportunity to ride on the crest of a wave.

How to get to Punta Chame?

You are welcome to get to Punta Chame from Panama City by renting a car along the Pan American Highway or by bus.

More: 10 Best Gay-Friendly Beaches in South Florida

6. Playa Gigante, Nicaragua

Another fascinating beach of Central America, Playa Gigante is a crescent-shaped beach on the southern Pacific coast of Nicaragua. As one of the most fascinating seashores, Playa Gigante is known as a local tourist attraction.

Playa Gigante and its waters support a tiny fishing community and the local residents are happy to serve up fresh fish from several shacks on the sand. It has several family activities, especially those with small children. The most interesting are the playgrounds. If you like spectacular sunsets, you will definitely love the beautiful tranquility of Playa Gigante.

How to get to Playa Gigante?

You can get to Playa Gigante in several ways: take a direct bus to Playa Gigante (there is only one bus per day that leaves at 13:30, which takes about 90 minutes), by bus to Las Salinas from Rivas, or by taxi.

More: 10 Most Beautiful Places in the World

7. Playa Manzanillo, Columbia

Perhaps, you read it as Colombia, right? Colombia is South America, but not Central America. Columbia has two islands in the Caribbean Sea – Isla de Providencia and Isla de San Andrés. Manzanillo Beach is a small beautiful coast inside a sheltered bay within walking distance of Puerto Escondido Airport, Mexico.

This is an excellent place for swimming. There are beautiful views of the hills around, the sand is pleasant, many palm trees everywhere, and the entry into the water is comfortable without waves. On weekends there are always a lot of locals here, and on other days it is already quite calm. Devoid of almost all development, Playa Manzanillo is usually deserted, making it an ideal place to relax and forget all your problems and troubles.

How to get to Manzanillo Beach?

After flying to Puerto Escondido airport (PXM), take a taxi or bus.

More: 10 Gorgeous Places Everyone Should Visit

8. Playa San Diego, El Salvador

This is actually one of my favorite Central American beaches! The Pacific coastline of El Salvador boasts a wonderful mix of shimmering white sand beaches and glittering black sand beaches. There are many beaches for surfing, but if you want the waves to be calmer and gentler so that you can easily swim after sunbathing in your private patch of soft sand, Playa San Diego is right for you!

It is considered one of the most beautiful coasts in the country. A 7 km stretch of white sand, soft surf, light breeze, and a gentle entry into the ocean make your stay here perfect.

Playa San Diego is ideal for a seashore picnic, football, volleyball, or jogging. You can come on this beach of Central America with a family, couple, or company, admiring the beautiful tropical landscapes overlooking the San Vicente volcano, swimming in the ocean, and taking a break from the bustle of the city. In any case, you will definitely be satisfied with your vacation here.

How to get to Playa San Diego?

You should come here both by a direct international flight (from Guatemala City, Managua, or Tegucigalpa) and by a local one, going directly from the border. One more possible way to get there is a rental car.

More: 10 Must-See Places in the World

9. Playa Cocolito, Costa Rica

Having some of the most fascinating beach destinations in Central America, Costa Rica is blessed with an incredible array of awesome beaches on both coasts. Whether you choose the Pacific or Caribbean coasts, you will get a real castaway-type experience. Playa Cocolito is one of the most fascinating Central American beaches worth visiting. Playa Cocalito is not crowded with tourists, despite being close to small hotels in the area.

Monkeys, parrots, and other tropical birds and iguanas thrive in the coastal rainforests, and snorkelers can spot plenty of marine life offshore when the waters are calm.

How to get to Playa Cocolito?

This secluded beach is only about 60 meters long and is a 30-minute walk from Drake Bay. You will have to walk through a fantastic jungle trail and a suspension bridge, surrounded by parrots and monkeys, to reach the soft sand fringed by beautiful swaying palm trees.

More: 11 Amazing Places to Visit Before They Disappear

10. Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica

One of the most popular Costa Rica beaches, Manuel Antonio, retains its charms despite mushrooming hotels and burgeoning crowds. Manuel Antonio Beach is located in the Manuel Antonio National Park in the province of Puntarenas on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica.

The beaches, particularly those inside the national park, are stunning, and the views from the hills are breathtaking. Rooms with spectacular views tend to be expensive, but they are worth it! You will never forget these Central American beaches’ amazing natural and pristine beauty.

How to get to Manuel Antonio?

Its proximity is another reason it is one of the most visited beaches. You can reach this one of the best areas in Central America traveling by car or bus. You can get a bus from San José or Juan Santamaria International Airport, near the city of Alajuela. But if you want to go to the coast upon arrival, call a taxi at the bus station in Alajuela and take the next bus past Jaco Beach to Manuel Antonio.

These beaches are stunning, aren’t they? What are your favorite beaches in Central America? Please comment below!

Which Central American country has the best beaches?

Undoubtedly, Costa Rica has the best beaches. Ocean waves, caves filled with bats, picturesque volcanic peaks – these natural challenges await lovers of extreme sports. More discreet tourists can simply soak up one of the beaches in Costa Rica. Therefore, the visitors can do what their soul desires. 

What are the best family beaches in Central America? 

Trujillo, West Bay Beach in Honduras, Montezuma in Costa Rica, and Placencia in Belize are the best family beaches in Central America. Beautiful nature, clean sandy beaches, azure waters of the Pacific Ocean, wonderful climate, and colorful Indian settlements have made Trujillo a favorite vacation spot.

What are the best party beaches in Central America?

Copacabana and Ipanema in Rio-de-Janeiro, Brazilia, are the best party beaches in Central America. These places are the centers of parties, a reflection of the spirit of Brazilian bright, positive, and incendiary culture. Thousands of sunbathers gather here every day. There you can see not only a huge number of beautiful people from all over the world but also celebrities.