As we mentioned in our Sustainability Goals for 2021 post, our local staff are the x-factor of Safari Surf School. As the first school to open up shop in Nosara, back in 1999, Safari Surf has been a trendsetter for similar businesses in Costa Rica. In over 20 years in business in Costa Rica, we’ve learned that no one quite compares to the local community. Our staff has a deep passion for surfing, the ocean, and sharing Costa Rican culture and Pura Vida hospitality with our guests. Since we were the first surf school to open in Nosara, some of our staff members have been with us for decades. Others have come on board a bit later, but either way, our staff is our family. In this week’s Safari Surf Staff Highlight, we introduce one of our surf coaches who has been with us for years, Pio. Pio and I caught up after his morning lesson.Continue reading
At Safari Surf School, we’re in the business of turning regular people into surfers, which, as you may assume, require a lot of water time. For 99.9% of our guests, the more time in the ocean, the better. As guests become more acquainted with surfing and its many nuances, they can’t help but be consumed by it. When guests aren’t surfing, they’re talking about surfing, planning their next surf session, or at the very least, thinking about surfing. There are those rare moments when you surf so much and so often that you need to take a break. That break could last a few hours or even a whole day. Fortunately for our guests, there is plenty to do in Nosara and Playa Guiones, both in and out of the water, that doesn’t involve riding waves.
As surfers, we feel we must be as environmentally conscious as possible in all facets of life, including our business. Sustainability, however, goes beyond just one’s environmental impact. Sustainability in travel and tourism means not only being eco-conscious and reducing waste but ensuring our existence as a business doesn’t displace, diminish, or damage the local culture and economy. 2020 was a rocky year for travel, but we used that time to reflect on our core values as a business in Costa Rica and as surfers. This year, we aim to continue our sustainable mission through a commitment to preserving, protecting, and improving the natural environment of Nosara, its culture, and its people. To find out more about our sustainability goals for 2021, continue reading below.Continue reading
Our Costa Rica surf school is perfectly positioned for our guests to have a complete Costa Rica experience, both in and out of the water. Located in Guanacaste on a remote stretch of the Nicoya Peninsula, travelers in Nosara can experience Costa Rica’s abundant wildlife on land and sea. If you’re surfed out for the day or need to give yourself a bit of a break, head to one of the nearby protected nature reserves and see Costa Rica’s exotic wildlife. Nearly one-third of Costa Rica’s land is protected as national parks, nature reserves, and wildlife refuges. Additionally, since the 1980s Costa Rica has successfully reversed its deforestation by 200%. To say that wildlife thrives in Costa Rica would be an understatement. Costa Rica is home to exotic and endangered wildlife that once dominated the entire Central America region but has since but poached out of existence in many other countries. Sloths, Scarlet Macaws, Spider Monkeys, Howler Monkeys, Jaguars, and more all call Costa Rica home. If you want to find out how to experience Costa Rican wildlife on your visit to our Costa Rica surf school, continue reading below.Continue reading
As surfers, we spend quite a lot of time close to nature. It could be argued that there is no single activity that is as in tune with nature as surfing. Riding waves in the ocean that are created by storm systems thousands of miles away is about as close to nature as you can get. It’s surfing’s proximity to nature that drives surfers to protect the environment. The ocean is our playground, and it is heartbreaking to see it filled with trash, single-use plastics, and discarded fishing gear. As a traveler, your movement already weighs heavily on the environment. The carbon emissions from one long flight exceed approximately 14% of your car’s annual fossil fuel emissions. Additionally, modern traveling is ripe with wasteful single-use products. So, what is a traveler to do? Without giving up travel altogether, there are a few steps travelers can take to help reduce their environmental impact while on the road. If you’re visiting our Nosara surf school and want to reduce waste during your journey, continue reading below for How to Travel Sustainably When You Visit Our Nosara Surf School.
As much as we love our home in Nosara, Costa Rica, and our home break Playa Guiones, we can’t say no to a new adventure. When we decided to expand our operations at Safari Surf, we looked far and wide for a wave and location that reminded us a bit of our roots in Playa Guiones but still had an independent culture and identity. Most of all, we wanted a new adventure for ourselves, and our Safari Surf guests. After leaving no stone unturned and much deliberation, we settled on a little slice of paradise known as Playa Venao, Panama. To find out more about our Panama operation and why we fell in love with Playa Venao, continue reading below for Why More Visitors are Heading to Panama & How we Settled on Playa Venao for Safari Surf.Continue reading
Safari Surf School founder and Prez Tim Marsh can be summed up in one word: Irrepressible. Look it up and you’ll find words that say “That’s Tim!”: passionate, unquenchable, everlasting, ebullient, exuberant, buoyant, [more]high-spirited, impossible to hold back…
I remember hearing motivational speaker Joel Weldon touting his mantra “SUCCESS COMES IN CANS, NOT IN CANNOTS” – this is Tim!
With the success and growth of Safari Surf School in Nosara, Costa Rica, you’d think he’d have his hands full. He does! But inside that brain of his, the hamster wheel spins madly – he is hatching something!
A longtime dream of Tim’s has been to create a program that bridges the ‘novice’ surfer to the next level. The result has manifest in a new travel abroad guided surf coaching company call Safari Surf Adventures. Geared for the intermediate skill level surfers, Safari Surf Adventures organizes all-inclusive “coaching tutorial” group trips to exotic locales with amazing challenging waves.
With the first of two promo trips now under his belt, I asked Tim about this new adventure program and where it’s all headed.
1) Explain the genesis of SSA I’ve always knew there was the “next level” or “natural progression” with Safari Surf School…meaning the surf school program could only take a person so far in their surf skill set as well as one’s taste for adventure travel.
I started a business plan back in 2011 and had just about finished the plan in 2012 for the future project called Safari Surf Adventures. The program was to be dedicated to intermediate level surfers and above. Persons looking to take their surf skill set to the next level while surfing remote and exotic point type waves with top notch surf coaches in the water with you and state of the art video analysis software for recording and analyzing one’s surf technique. All this while enjoying the local cultures of the destinations we go to and traveling with a sustainable philosophy to ensure our footprint is not too large and the local communities we visit can benefit in some fashion from our presence. The plan was set and ready for a public launch in 2012. I created a page on my website letting people know there was an investment opportunity and then BANG. The rug was pulled out from under me. My partners in the hotel Casa Tucan decided they wanted to sell the hotel and Safari Surf School was about to be homeless. My focus immediately turned to finding a new location for SSS in Nosara and the SSA program was put on the back burner. Three and a half years later Olas Verdes was completed and Safari Surf School had its new home. I had achieved what I had set out to do which was to create an awesome home base for my program there in Nosara. Late in 2016 I received an email from a person interested in an investment opportunity. I had no idea what it was about but soon came to find out a person had seen my original old web page about my investment opportunity for SSA. Literally 2 weeks later another person contacted me about the very same page / investment announcement that I had placed on the back burner some years prior. The signs were flashing and the stars seemed aligned to make my SSA program come to fruition. Through hard work and strategic relationships SSA was born and we have completed our first two pilot trips.
2) Where will future camps be held?
We have base locations in Indonesia (Timor area), Peru, Portugal, New Zealand, Morocco, and of course Nicaragua and Costa Rica. We are also looking at adding locations in Australia, Puerto Rico, and possibly in Maui.
3) What factors go into selecting a destination?
We are looking for somewhat remote locations with shoulder seasons that are not crowded and have world class point type of surf breaks. Riding a point wave will increase one’s surf skill set exponentially! The locations need to have quality accommodations, and we are interested in training and employing local peoples where we can. Obviously we’re looking for quality people to work with in each location.
4) Who are the coaches? Describe the coaching process.
We’re in the process of working with many coaches but currently we have world ranked # 2 surf pro Serena Brooke working with us in the Australia, Indo, and New Zealand area. WE have Kimber Kinley along with my local SSS staff members who are ISA Level 2 Surf Coaches like Alonso, Helberth, Pio, Luis etc. working with us in the Americas (Peru, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua). We’re always looking for high end surf coaches to join us!
5) Will the trips be videoed and photographed?
All trips surf sessions will be videoed along with photographs, but our main content will be video as this is what we will be using to analyze and breakdown surfing technique and performance. All video, photos, and analysis footage will be provided to guests.
6) Who is this new programed geared towards?
So far, we’ve had mostly SSS alumni which has been so cool! There is really no right or wrong board type for these trips. Most I will say have been guests shortening their boards and getting more comfy on mid-range length to short boards. We’ve had men and women with all types of age variance …really this program is for everyone who is a solid intermediate level surfer.
7) What other activities are offered along with surfing?
Ha …what don’t we do! Of course there are all type of ocean and land-based activities to partake in. We also visit local schools, local cultural events, local communities. For example, on our latest Rote, Indonesia trip we all toured the island on mopeds, visiting remote communities, markets, hidden beaches, and restaurants – A Blast!
8) How did the first two trips go? AMAZING !!
These were “pilot” trips to get people there and provide us feedback while we also did a ton of video so we can create location story board videos for these locales as well.
9) Where can we find out more on SSA?
Our website is now live: www.safarisurfadventures.com We also have pages on Facebook and Instagram.