Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Monkeys, Volcanos and Jungle.

I'm reluctantly back. Holy moly is Costa Rica amazing. What a gem of a country. I've been one lucky duck who's been able to travel a lot and I have to say it ranks up there as one of my absolute favorite places I have ever been. The people could not be warmer and lovelier, the country beautiful, and the adventures epic. Seriously set a kayak alert and get yourself down there lickety split.

I left my ipad on the flight from Miami to San Jose...I know, I know. Amazing part, I GOT IT BACK. I became known as la muchacha de ipad at the San Jose airport. Totally worth it. That was how the adventure started and it bode well for the trip. We crashed in San Jose (at 6pm I might add) and then were up and ready to drive to Arenal the next day.

The drive was pretty cool because you go through about a million micro climates. It vacillates between jungle, mountains, valley, and then at one point a cloud forest. Really cool, mildly terrifying in a car, but very cool. At La Montana de Fuego we met Sergio who is a biologist/concierge. He informed us the GIANT blue butterfly we spotted on the road was the spirit of god. We were like uhm....what? He's like oh we believe when you see that it's the spirit of god. Cool. Got it now. The next day we lucked out and he was our guide for the hanging bridges rainforest jungle exploration. He knows the area so well my brain is still melted from all the info. We got to "off road", walk on unmarked paths because of how well he knows it and see more things. Of course it poured rain a lot of our 4 hours there but to be expected in the rainforest. We went got back to the hotel and had our second massage of the trip. We got 1.5 massages for $95 total. I love Costa Rica. It was not as amazing as the previous night's massage at Tabacon where we were in open air bungalows by the hot springs at sunset but whatevs a massage is a massage.

Tuesday we were up early and off to the coast. Driving was the best decision we made. We just got to see so much more that way. Included in these sights was a lady walking down the street cuddling an armadillo like a baby. Where we went on the coast was Nosara. It's remote, a sleepy surfer jungle town. The last 30 kilometers there are unpaved and it gets progressively more unpaved and is this a road or not as you get closer. Sergio our biologist gem had warned us there would be a river that gps would tell us to cross but to not do it. We tried to cross the river. I learned my Spanish is good enough to get a man to call his friend with a tractor to pull us out of a river. Knowledge I has it. I called the hotel pre-river friends because well who else is going to help me? Francisco who ended up being a grand hotel friend granted me one of the better phone convos of my life. His question of, "Miss Anna, but why are you in a river?", will never cease to make me giggle.

Wednesday am we woke up and went to breakfast. A cup of coffee in we experienced a 7.6 earthquake and then subsequent tsunami warning. The good thing about Costa Rica is it's extremely relaxing so I was pretty unfazed by this. Not sure why. I mean nature is a real beast sometimes. The monkeys that live in the trees on the hotel were very upset however. I loved, loved, loved, the coast though and seriously cannot wait to go back.

Thursday we got to check out Playa Ostional after pool and beach lounging most of the day to see turtles swim ashore to lay their eggs. It was pretty amazing seeing there little heads pop up in the waves stacked up like planes, and watch them wash ashore to get to the egg business. I felt bad for them however. I mean they looked worn out by their biological plight and here we are crowding the beach photographing them.

I was very sad to leave and the trip back where I got stuck in immigration purgatory and an unexpected night in Miami made me think I should never have left. I cannot wait to go back and I already keep looking to see when I can make that happen.

Not to get all serious and vaguely cheesy but being there and navigating it all and getting caught up in the spirit of adventure made me really realize you can have any life you want, but it's on you to make it happen. I can head out and adventure wherever I want and cannot forget that even if delicious plantains are not at every meal, and kind Costa Ricans aren't fishing me out of rivers.

welcome to the jungle

watching clouds form

jungle realness

juice of the jungle

amazing and scary hanging bridges

Arenal, the volcano. 

Volcano digs

roadside jungle

quick stop and that's the view. 

Lake Arenal. 

Before we hosed Lupe. 

so this happened. 

when you hear monkeys all around you, you get in the car. The car in the river. 

hotel jungle

tsunami watching view

lonely palm tree

hotel's beach

A lil sunset beach action

Turtles ahoy!

Turtles incoming! 

Fisher price makes planes now. Not too scary a flight. 


  1. Wow sounds amazing!!! I want to go now you made it sound so magical :)

  2. Joyski- It seriously was amazing and magical!! Definitely put it on your list :)

  3. Swoooooon - I've got serious holiday envy. Those beaches look divine and deserted.

    Hooray for fantastic holidays, great travel buddies and just getting away from it all:) It was much deserved and I'm so glad you had a ball.