El Tunco was one of the main spots that I wanted to go to on my visit to El Salvador. Every blog I read about El Salvador; pretty much highlighted it as a must go to place. From what I can tell it was a surfers paradise as well as a big party place on the weekend. It was suppose to be the hidden gem of El Salvador. This clearly wasn’t the case when I got there, the word was out, and anyone trying to beat their winter from back home was here. Backpackers everywhere and you truly felt like you were on the backpacking trail. The thing I found funny about El Tunco is that it can be pretty empty during the day (more than likely people sleeping off their hangovers) but super packed and loud at night.
So My Take Of the Beach of El Tunco?
It’s pretty much the best damn beach that I’ve been too. The reason being in my case is that not only was it pretty but it also had waves and big ones! We definitely don’t get waves like that in Miami and the waves in Guam were pretty much non existent. If going for a swim be prepared to get knocked around by these powerful things. I tried body surfing a couple of them and ended up getting launched in the air and then doing somersaults underneath the water. It was a lot of fun though. If your not a good swimmer just be careful not to go to far as the waves can end up taking you away from shore if you’re not paying attention.
If you’re looking to surf you came to the right place. The waves are perfect for surfing on this beach. If you never surfed before, they have surf lessons for $10 dollars. My suggestion would be to go early in the morning while everyone is asleep so you have the waves to yourself – you don’t have to worry about getting in anyones way. Sadly I didn’t end up surfing or getting a lesson but I do plan on it the next time I go for a visit.
Night Time Fun Time
Nights in El Tunco are filled with loud music and busy streets. If you’re coming to El Tunco to party, its best to come on the weekends. Thats when the locals from all over El Salvador come to party as well as many more backpackers from where ever they come from. More bars will be open and will close late unlike on the weekdays where only two bars are open and they close pretty early.
Did feel sorry for one of my roommate though. All he wanted his whole time there was for some peace and quiet at night so he could sleep peacefully. He clearly didn’t get the memo that this beach is for the ones that wants to be loud and have fun all night without having a care in the world. Also didn’t help that the other hostel mates and myself came in late every night drunk of our ass singing and laughing while stumbling trying to reach our beds. Lesson to be learn from this? If you’re looking for peace and quiet this beach is not for you. I heard El Cuco beach is perfect for that, so you might want to go try there.
If you’re a lady then you should definitely come to El Tunco as they have ladies night where ladies drink free from 8 to 10pm! If only there was such thing as a men night, that would have been awesome. All in all you will have a great time at the bars dancing the night away. Drinks are cheap so for all you budget travelers be prepared to drink till your heart content.
One of the Most Laid Back Beach Town. Maybe a Little Too Laid Back!
You know how all the stores and restaurants back home all have a certain hours where they open, and for the most part most of them open up at the exact same time early in the morning? You won’t find that here, which me and a couple of friends I made found extremely weird. I first noticed after my first stay there as I had woken up the next morning to go out and grab something to eat around 8am. As I walked down the street I noticed that every shop and restaurant were closed. Weird I thought I’ll check by later. Around 10am me and my roommates went out to try again and majority of the places were still closed! Some were getting ready to open up though so that was some good news! Do be prepared for shops to open up randomly as it gets closer to the afternoon. I guess they figured everyone would be too busy sleeping off their hangovers to wake up early for breakfast. On the plus side, if you do want breakfast early in the morning your hostel will cook and provide you breakfast as a lot of them have their own little restaurant in them.
El Tunco was a great time and I will miss the place as well as the amazing friends I’ve made there. Definitely check out the Papaya Hostel. Rates are cheap and the outside lounge area is pretty amazing, especially with all the different level it has. Favorite part about it were the hammocks they had for you to lay on if you just wanted to just have a relaxing day of sobering up and doing nothing. I recommend anyone passing through El Salvador to definitely hit up El Tunco. This awesome small beach town is exactly what the doctor ordered.