Published: December 20th 2009December 4th 2009
Dec 2, 2009
Looking forward to a bit of sun and sand, our next destination, Tamarindo, was a beach town on the Pacific side of Northern Costa Rica. From the Alfaro Station in San Jose, we were able to take a cheap local bus to Tamarindo. During our 5-6 hour ride, we noticed that the bus hadn’t moved for a while. A little concerned that we were in yet another roadblock, we quickly realized that there had been a head on car collision with a huge truck. Both vehicles were in rough shape. It probably didn’t help that it was dark and the road were a bit slick from the rain.
By the time we got to Tamarindo, it was already dark out but the little beach town was lit, restaurant and bars were still open and people were still walking around. Since we had no idea where we were, we grabbed a taxi (only 3 minutes to walk but we didn’t know) to our hostel where we got ready for the beach!
Dec 3, 2009
Up a few houses from our hostel was a breakfast place with great food. We had breakfast burritos and Justin went
for fresh watermelon juice while I got fresh strawberry juice. It was refreshing and delicious! (We loved it so much that we even went back the next day and ordered the same thing!)
At one of the shops, we were able to purchase our bus tickets leaving for Nicaragua for the next day. Only complication was that we had to catch the Tica bus (bus service we were with) from Liberia. That meant that we’d have to take a 2 hour local bus from Tamarindo to Liberia and go to the McDonald’s where the bus should stop.
When we went back to our hostel, Justin was trying to pay for our room and came back a little frustrated. The nice man who helped us the day before said that it was $30 for the night while the cleaning lady (the only worker available at the time) said it was $35. We hated making something so small such a big deal. It was only $5 but after a while, $5 here and there and $10 here and there added up, leaving huge dents in our bank accounts. Since we didn’t think the hostel was worth $30, we decided to
move to a hotel that we saw close to the breakfast place advertising a room for $30. It was still the same price but hotels tend to be better than hostels.
Lucky for us, when we arrived to the hotel, we were introduced to a super nice man who worked there and showed us around. It was an outdoor common area with hammocks, a nice pool, and a fan cooled room for $25. Totally worth it.
We swam in the pool for a bit before attempting to catch a bus to a beach an hour from us called Playa Conchal. Justin had researched it, saying that it the entire beach was made of seashells, and that many people recommended it. Unfortunately, the bus service was unreliable and we decided that it wasn’t worth going all the way up there and wasting our entire day trying to find the place if we had a nice beach within walking distance.
We walked around town for a bit before going to the beach. There were tons of little gift shops selling turtle and monkey stuffed animals, towels and toucan figurines. Once we got to the beautiful beach, we couldn’t resist
but to jump into the water. Normally, I’d sit and tan on the beach but it was so hot that I just wanted to get into the water. It felt really nice but since it was so salty, my eyes started to sting and my nose started to burn. Justin used his goggles to see if he could see some fish but the water was so clouded with sand that he couldn’t see anything. The sand was a little coarse in some areas and very clay-like in other areas.
We spend a good few hours swimming around, looking for pretty seashells, “surfing” the waves (boogy boarding without the boogy boards) and taking tons of beach pictures. We have perfect examples of “surfing the waves” and Justin’s face was so intense that we had a good laugh looking at the pictures.
While Justin was recuperating from his water adventures, I looked around for some more seashells. I found some pretty ones, shaped like a Chinese straw hat, a glistening oyster shell, tiny seashells and coral.
Finding that we were still dripping with sweat, an Italian homemade gelato sign convinced us to walk into an air conditioned store. After
our delicious cold treat, we headed back to the hotel and swam in the pool for a bit.
The internet connection at the hotel didn’t work very well from our room so we had to sit outside for higher speed connection. Since it was dark out, evil mosquitoes were in search of blood. Of course, it had to be my blood and within 15 minutes of sitting outside, I counted 23 bites. I was being eaten alive. Luckily, I still had the 100% deet insect repellent so after drowning my body with it, I was good to go.
Tamarindo wasn’t the cheapest place to be. Food costs were pretty high and spending a few more dollars than the cheaper typical food earned us delicious and fresh seafood. We decided to splurge on dinner and by splurge, I meant spoil ourselves. The chef highly recommended his ‘Surf and Turf’ special. It was a dish serving lobster and steak with mushroom sauce, mashed potatoes and some veggies. Justin got the Chef’s other special, which was Mahi Mahi fish jumbo shrimps and scallops in tropical curry sauce with veggies.
We sat outside with the laptop and skyped Justin’s Mom and
Dad. It was great to hear familiar voices and we all caught up with updated news.
There are more photos below