5 Things To Do In El Tunco That Don’t Include Surfing


The one thing we heard over and over again on our way to El Tunco along the coast of El Salvador was how great it is for surfing.

And it is. But we don’t surf. Well, it’s also great for learning to surf… this is also true, except for the week we were visiting which saw quite rough surf and six tragic fatalities among the surfers. So while we had little enthusiasm for surfing in El Tunco here’s a few of the other things to see and do in this little surfing village.

Boogie Boarding

You may not surf but anyone can boogie on a boogie board. Don’t be discouraged by the 6 year old kids doing tricks on their surfboards, get out amongst the waves and feel the same thrill with a more family-friendly activity. Many of the surfboard rental shops along the main street also rent boogie boards at a cheap daily rate.

Brew Revolution Bar

El Tunco has it’s very own micro-brewery 2 minutes walk from the main street where you can sample a small selection of cervezas (beer) brewed in-house. We enjoyed a refreshing tropical beer made with flavours of pineapple, cloves and passion-fruit accompanied by a tasty guacamole burger and sweet potato chips. The staff are friendly and keen to have a chat about the local produce they use and the beer brewing process. All in all a very pleasant afternoon spent in the shade of this hip little road-side bar.

Tamanique Waterfalls

Not technically in El Tunco, this series of waterfalls is located 20 minutes away in the mountain town of Tamanique. Nevertheless, it’s a great activity for cooling down in the humid El Salvador weather and if you’re game there’s a 40 foot jump from the top of one of the waterfalls that will get your adrenaline pumping. For $3 a local guide will take you on the 30 minute hike from Tamanique down to the waterfalls and back again.

The Beach At Night

On any given Friday and Saturday in El Tunco a herd of locals head down to the beach around sunset to view the spectacular dying sun. You’ll find groups of teenagers and adults hanging out on the large bits of driftwood, kids running around with their glow in the dark toys that whizz into the air and tourists enjoying an after-dinner ice cream all to the sound of the dark waves rushing in. And the later it gets, the rowdier it gets… the kids head home to bed, people strip off to go swimming and the bonfires are lit. Live music blares from the beach-front bars and couples cuddle together along the beach wall. This beautiful black-sand beach is not just for surfing.

Fruit Smoothies & Yoga

As we moved on into Honduras the thing I missed most about El Tunco were the fresh fruit smoothies for $2 that are whizzed up in the blender right in front you in about 30 seconds. Watermelons, bananas, strawberries, pineapple, coconut, kiwi, and numerous other fruits I didn’t even recognise all get chucked in and come out in a frothy, icy, delicious mixture. Accompany that with the sunset Yoga classes and you have a winning combination.


We tried out a time-lapse video of the sunset at El Tunco. Unfortunately it wasn’t a Friday or Saturday evening so there’s not quite as much activity going on, but keep an eye out for the tiny surfers and for Will’s guest appearance along the beach wall.


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4 Responses

  1. Jimbrah says:

    Awesome! Do you know how about getting to the waterfalls? Can you find a guide easily in El Tunco? Thanks!

  1. March 19, 2014

    […] Surfing Towns (La Libertad, El Tunco and surrounds) – Popular destinations for surfers, those looking to learn, or non-surfers looking to take it pretty easy for awhile. Home to some of the best surf in Central America, people from all over visit to surf here. Beaches are not picturesque, but they do grow on you. It gets hot along this coast so stay in a place that has a pool (which is luckily most places). Read More Here. […]

  2. March 26, 2014

    […] 5 Things To Do In El Tunco That Don’t Include Surfing […]

  3. January 24, 2016

    […] waterfalls near El Tunco are an absolute must for anybody spending a couple of days in the area. We were […]

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