Santa Teresa, Costa Rica
If you're one of those people looking for the perfect beach town and feel that Tulum and even Sayulita have been bastardised by the disingenuous (just saying) then Santa Teresa is your perfect destination - an enchanting place which has reached the apex of perfection balancing rusticity and coolness. It's a hippie surf town with ridiculous beaches, great waves and a handful of really good restaurants and bars. It's also filled with beautiful people.
When to go
November to January are the best months to go. You might get some rain, but the weather is warm and the surrounding jungle a vibrant green from the wet season. If you simply can't hack mosquitoes or rain go from February to April, but be warned: the temperatures soar into the mid-30s come afternoon (with humidity) and can be very uncomfortable unless you're in water or an air-conditioned room.
Who to take with you
Your partner or a small group of friends - this is the kind of place where you'll be making memories, so have people you enjoy around you.
Most likely to bump into...
Gisele Bündchen motoring her kids around on a quad bike or her husband Tom Brady surfing. They own a house overlooking Playa Hermosa.
Surfing. It sounds obvious, but even if you aren't a surfer book a class and get in the water. You'll find it's easier than what you thought. Also dinner at Koji's, a tapas-style Japanese restaurant. At nightfall you'll find it draped in fairy lights, a wooden refuge of deliciousness on the side of the road.
An essential you need to bring with you?
A bandana to cover your mouth while you're riding around on your quad - most of the roads aren't paved and in the dry season a ride can get very dusty.
How to get there
Fly into Costa Rica's capital San José and then take a connecting flight with Sansa or Nature Air. Alternatively you can drive but you'll need a connecting ferry and the roads aren't particularly good. British Airways now flies direct from London Gatwick.