Blogs from Puntarenas, Costa Rica, Central America Caribbean


===English version below=== Boquete was slechts een korte tussenstop op weg naar Costa Rica waar ons een huisoppas van 8 weken wacht. Het is precies 5 jaar geleden dat we in Costa Rica waren en voor het eerst kennis maakten met wat Latijns Amerika te bieden heeft. De gedachte dat we binnen een paar uur opnieuw in Costa Rica zullen zijn doet ons wel iets. Eerst wacht ons nog een busrit van een paar uur en de grensovergang. Het loopt verrassend vlot, slechts even aanschuiven, wat papiertjes invullen en zonder veel verdere vragen krijgen we een stempel in ons paspoort. Bienvenidos! Daarna hebben we minder geluk want we moeten bijna 2 uur wachten op de bus richting Golfito. Het wordt spannend om onze bestemming nog te halen voor zonsondergang. Vanuit Golfito moeten we nog een korte ... read more
Overtocht - crossing

Our main reason for visiting Costa Rica was to see wildlife so what better way to arrive in the country than on a boat through the jungle with monkeys running around in the branches and various birds swooping through the trees. We crossed the border at Los Chiles and it was a pretty easy crossing. To get anywhere in Costa Rica by bus you have to go in and out of the capital San Jose, which makes it a difficult country to travel around. We headed straight there as a quick stop on our way to Manuel Antonio national park. Steve will talk about San Jose later. After the remoteness of Rio San Juan, Costa Rica came as a bit of a shock. The country is incredibly beautiful and has a ridiculous amount of wildlife. It ... read more
Agouti in the undergrowth
Spot the sloth
Look out for crocodiles!

Apres deux semaines passées dans la péninsule d'Osa, au sein du Osa Mountain Village, je suis de retour dans ma famille adorée, pour la dernière semaine avant l'arrivée de mon amoureux. Ma première impression en ce qui concernait le propriétaire des lieux se confirma chaque fois que j'eu l'occasion de le côtoyer. Pour vous imaginer le personnage, un vrai américain de New York ayant eu l'idée de venir faire de l'argent dans un coin peu exploité, du moins pour l'instant, du Costa Rica. Un vieux frustré qui pense tout connaître et qui se fait une couette sur le dessus de la tête, un peu plus, il se la met dans le front. Chaque jour il s'installe devant son ordinateur en prétextant qu'il a une tonne de choses a régler. Presque tous les jours, il fait une ... read more

Eh oui chers lecteurs et chères lectrices, me voila de retour sur la route une fois de plus... A la recherche de nouvelle aventures et de nouvelles rencontres et prise de conscience. Je tiens d'abord a vous dire que je suis en possession d'un clavier anglais et qu'il m'est donc impossible de mettre accents, apostrophe, etc. Les seuls endroits ou ils apparaitront, ce sera grâce a l'auto correcteur. Cela étant dit, me voila en mesure de vous raconter mes premiers périples en terre des Ticos (ainsi appelons-nous les Costaricains en espagnol..) Voila déjà près de 3 semaines que je suis au Costa Rica, ce pays ou je fais mon apparition pour la deuxième fois. Mon périple a commencé par une surprise! j'avais décidé que ma première destination serait le petit village qu'il m'avait été donné de ... read more
Mis amigos los pizotes
La familia

The main tip when trekking in Corcovado National Park is to pack light, meaning that clothes need to be re-worn over multiple days. By the second day of our trek, we could not determine if the terrible smell was from rotting carcases, schools of Peccaries, poo being thrown at us by Spider Monkeys, or just ourselves. By the end of the trek, our clothes smelt so bad that it was gut churning, and some of them had to be thrown out, as they were not salvageable. In fact they probably could have thrown themselves in the bin... Corcovado is rated by National Geographic as the world's third best National Park, and the most biologically intense place in the world. It is one of the few remaining areas of lowland tropical rainforest left, and due to its ... read more
Crocodile coming in from the sea into Sirena River
Scarlet Macaw
Chestnut-Mandibled Toucan


On a map, it looks like it is a relatively short distance to get from San Juan del Sur in Nicaragua, to the Osa Peninsula in Costa Rica on the far south west coast. It took us 3 solid days of travelling, totalling 31 hours of travel time, utilising 10 buses in the process. We had given ourselves 6 days to make the journey south, with a few days allowance to break up the fairly torturous travelling. Before we left San Juan del Sur, we spent another 6 fabulous days there before the hordes started rolling in, and the dynamic and energy of the place changed. We spent 16 days there in total, over 2 different stretches, and saw the place change from a quiet little town, to gringo ground zero with the restaurants and bars ... read more
Ice cream time in San Juan del Sur
Lunch drinks
Average lunch for $2.50

The end of our stay arrived and we caught the bumpiest truck back into San Juan del Sur for our bus connection to Rivas. We checked into a small Hotel on the panamerican highway in preparation for our bus to Costa Rica the next day, then headed into town. Rivas is very small and very hot, one day to explore was enough for us. We stocked up on snacks at the supermarket and forgot (again) just how expensive apples are here, it is the equivalent of buying mangos at home! The crossing back into Costa Rica went smoothly and we stopped one night in Liberia before heading on to Monteverde. The road up to Monteverde from the highway is dramatic, twisty turning, incredibly steep and rough. The views are fabulous, you can see the pacific coast ... read more
Just emerged from the chrysalis
Blue Morpho butterfly, Monteverde
Butterfly garden, Monteverde

After a two hour boat ride and a four hour bus ride interspersed with two breakdowns in the middle of nowhere due to break failures, we arrived ragged and tired in La Fortuna. Checking into our hostel, we found out that we were the only people staying there. The tourist town usually a hive of activity during peak season was now empty, with just a splattering of gringo's and locals wandering around. Most people come here to view the active Volcan Arenal that towers over the town, and to enjoy the hot springs that stream out of the volcano. There are numerous fancy hotels, including a 5 star place, that have been built next to the hot springs and charge a ridiculous amount of money to visit the springs. However, there is a free one that ... read more
Keeled Bill Toucans
Emerald Hummingbird
Green Viper

Before arrival in Costa Rica, reports I had heard from other travellers meant I hadn't been expecting it to be quite to my taste – I.e. a well developed country with very expensive prices, and huge numbers of American tourists to boot. As usual the reality turned out differently to the rumours, as my first journey was to the out of the way Corcovado national park, on some pretty rickety buses across some pretty rough roads! I also got introduced to levels of bureaucracy that would have made Venezuela proud! To gain entry to the national park you couldn't just pay at the entrance like virtually every other national park in the world, you had to hike across town to their office to register your preferences, then take this form to their bank on the other ... read more
Corcovado national park
White faced monkey caught napping!
Yellow bellied snake

Central America Caribbean » Costa Rica » Puntarenas » Jaco August 25th 2013

Costa Rica. Just saying the name conjures up images of lush, tropical forest, of pristine, palm-lined beaches, of cheeky monkeys and big, blue butterflies. Ever since the first time I visited Costa Rica over nine years ago, I’ve loved every inch of its natural beauty. There was only one place in the entire country that I avoided like the plague, a tiny black spot on its map of greens and blues. This place was Jacó. In 2004, halfway through my first stroll in downtown Jacó, I could already feel an overwhelming contempt creeping into my system. What I saw disgusted me. I saw an Americanized, hedonistic cesspool; a place for college spring-breakers to get f**ked up without fear of the law; a place for perverted pensioners to find cheap sex, a place of feces-filled waterways, robber-filled ... read more
Hitchin' Down to Jaco
Jaco Beach

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