Sink or Swim
You should swim at your own risk all along the western Pacific coast of El Salvador. There are few, if any, public lifeguards, and most beachfront hotels don't provide them. So, if the waves are big, you're not a great swimmer, or it feels like there's too strong a current, you probably shouldn't go in. There are even a number of river mouths meeting the ocean where the current can be particularly overpowering; don't swim in these locations. However, protected Tamarindo area offers the calmest waters in the country, and when the waves are small along Playa Tunco, Playa Sunzal, or Barra de Santiago, you should have no problem. Just keep in mind there is often no one around to save you if you do encounter any issues.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.