Tamarindo Weather Information
If you’re planning a visit to Tamarindo, Costa Rica, one of the first questions that’s bound to come up is “What’s the weather like in Tamarindo?” The short answer is “Great!” The longer answers address the varying conditions that arise in the Tropics. At 10 degrees latitude, we’re just 600 nautical (690 statute) miles north of the Equator, and so well-embedded in the tropical zone.
First of all, it’s always warm in Tamarindo, so if you’re planning a visit, pack accordingly. The average temperature year ’round in Tamarindo is around 83°F, which is a good guide. The average high temp is around 93°F, and the average low is around 74°F, so there’s not a big swing between extremes.
Here’s what the monthly high and low average temperatures during the year look like:*
There’s not a lot to pack, clothing-wise. For example, if you’re going to the beach: swimsuits or bikinis of course, then perhaps a t-shirt or other light cover-up, and flipflops or sandals. For kicking around town during the day many just wear what they wore to the beach, with the t-shirt or cover-up, and flipflops, sandals or light shoes. For going out at night, shorts or light slacks and a short sleeve shirt and light shoes are common, or skirt and light top or light dress, and sandals or light shoes. Otherwise, you just need to think of whether or not to carry something if it looks like rain, which will normally be unnecessary from late November through early April.
Seasonally, November through April is known as the “dry” season or summer in Costa Rica, and May through October is known as the “green” season or winter. During the dry months, the offshore trade winds commonly blow most days, so these days are sunny, windy, and have low humidity. During the green season, the winds die down or turn onshore, bringing moist, cooler air, higher humidity, and the possibility of a rain shower.
The seasonal change from dry to green can be gradual, with days of rain followed by sporadic bouts of offshore winds. Usually, in May, the offshore winds die completely. The change back from green to dry, usually in November, can be more marked or abrupt. There can be rain every day, even into November, and then it is often the case that the offshore winds kick up one day abruptly, you can feel the change in humidity, and just like that, the dry season is here. It might rain briefly at some point in the next month or two, but for the most part, it will be sunny, dry, and windy until April.
One of the great things about our location is that the sea temperature is very warm as well, so you can typically frolic in the water all you want without getting chilled. (But don’t forget to use sunscreen.) There are a few days during the year, typically during the Jan. – Mar. period, when the wind blows offshore strongly, thus cooling the water temperatures along the shoreline, but this doesn’t happen often enough to place much effect on monthly averages.
Here’s what the average monthly high and low sea temperatures during the year look like:
Here’s what the monthly rainfall averages in Tamarindo during the year look like:
During the “green season” months of May through October, the typical weather pattern is for glorious sunny mornings, partly cloudy afternoons, with rain clouds building up during the late afternoon, leading to those spectacular Tamarindo sunsets! There may or may not be a shower in the afternoon, and then perhaps some rain during the night. If a low-pressure system arises locally or within this tropical neighborhood, we will get some days of overcast and on-and-off rain.
If there is a hurricane brewing anywhere in our region of these lower latitudes (hurricane season is officially May 15 – Nov. 30 in the Eastern Pacific, and June 1 – Nov. 30 in the Atlantic), Tamarindo may experience some collateral rain conditions. If it’s something pretty close, there can be “monsoon” conditions for a few days with overcast skies, drizzle, and on-and-off rain, but this is not a frequent occurrence.
And here’s what the average humidity in Tamarindo during the year looks like:
But what about the sun? Suffice it to say that one of the most important things you should pack is a good supply of sunscreen: this is the tropics, and there is a lot of sunshine here. On an average day in Tamarindo, the UV index will be from 8-10, which is to say, “Very High”. Even on those days when it is overcast, there are plenty of UV rays, so the use of sunscreen is recommended even when you can’t directly see the sun.
Being 10° above the equator means that the sunrises and sunsets are going to occur, roughly, between 5:30 and 6:00, AM and PM, all year.
Thus we have around 12 hours of daylight from day to day throughout the year, which is fantastic given that this area is highly conducive to all kinds of outdoor activities!
Average hours of daylight in Tamarindo during the year:
To learn more about the different weather factors affecting the Tamarindo area, check out these resources as well:
Windfinder Greatest resource for wind predictions, with a 10-day forecast. Primarily of interest to surfers, who are looking for offshore winds in Tamarindo, this is also a great resource if you’re planning on going fishing, since wind is what affects most the wave action on the water.
National Hurricane Center From May through November NOAA’s National Hurricane Center tracks hurricanes and tropical storms in the Atlantic and Eastern Pacific. From time to time collateral effects from a tropical disturbance in our latitude can bring us more rain and sometimes choppy conditions on the ocean.
Weather Underground Weather Underground provides current condition data and a 10-day forecast for our area in addition to astronomical data.
Surfline Surfline provides surf reports, tides, and forecasts for the Tamarindo area. The data is limited to current conditions and a 24-hour forecast but users can upgrade to a membership and get a 17-day forecast.
Magic Seaweed Magic Seaweed also provides a daily surf report and forecast data (subscription upgrade also available), along with historical information, tides, charts, and other information.