Negra is crazy crowded on a swell. Grande is pretty wide open but crocs are a concern the closer you get to the rivermouth. Avellanas is like Waikiki, people are everywhere.
Mal Pais has some wide open beaches. Cool little town too.
yessir, Negra doesn't hold a crowd to well. I surfed it with 8-10 people and that seemed perfect. You are right about Avs, especially in front of Lola's....that's why I walk about 5 minutes North or to Little Hawaii. When we stayed at Cabinas Los Olas, we took the wooden plank pier walk thru the mangroves and surfed there.
And the rivermouth at Grande/Tamarindo is where that guy got attacked last July. Happened about 6 days after we left. I have surfed the rivermouth in the past but I surf Pachotes and Big Rock. You will be safe there......pretty much