Blogs from Playas del Coco, Guanacaste, Costa Rica, Central America Caribbean


After happily anticipating our third trip to Costa Rica, we were a bit disconcerted about the American government shut-down. However, our layover in Dallas and departure the next day, went smoothly ! The security staff carried on admirably, despite the prospect of no pay. We arrived in Liberia to cloudless blue skies and a temp of 94 F. It felt great after the cold January rain of British Columbia. After quickly settling into our favourite hotel in Hermosa, we set off for the beach and enjoyed a swim. In spite of being high season, it wasn't terribly crowded, even though it was the weekend. Monday was even better! The iguanas were still patrolling among the trees nearby and fish were leaping from the water. Doves still serenading us during the early morning hours. It felt like ... read more
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We had another early start with coffee and stale German pastries, before heading to the lobby for our 8am pickup for our Sail-Snorkel-Rum-Punch-Lunch trip. We had arranged for the sailboat-lunch-snorkel cruise from the hotel the day before. A woman from the boat tour picked us up and drove us in her car to a beach in Playas del Coco where the sailboat was anchored off shore. The harbor, set in a secluded cove, was filled with other sailboats and fishing boats. A dingy soon came to shore to pick us up and carry us to the sailboat. We were the first to arrive but soon were joined by a French family of four, bringing us to only 7 of us on board. The seas were calm yet there was enough breeze to get us underway. We ... read more
Secluded snorkel cove and cave beach
Sailing the Gulf of Papagayo
Monkey Head Island

Mandy and I woke early to hear the roar of the Howler Monkeys. I ran off to photograph them in my night clothes causing the guards to chuckle. We wanted to savor every last minute so we grabbed our coffees, books and cameras, swept off a lounge chair to read and spent the last precious morning on the beach. From under the tall palms I looked out to the ocean and watched the fishermen prepare for their day at sea while the birds floated in the ocean around the boats or perched on the boats’ biminis hoping to catch a stray fish. Monkey Island stood out at the edge of the bay and behind it, the mountains’ sharp outline defined by the morning sky. Mandy relaxed with her book, enjoying the special last peaceful morning. Kate ... read more
Moonrise on our last morning at Bosque del Mar

This morning we took a shuttle bus from the Riu to Playa Coco. We had the option of taking a boat shuttle which would cost $20 round trip and take 15 min or the bus which was $15 round trip and took 30 min. We decided to take the bus because the first availability for the boat was not until 1pm as the boat only seats 8 people. We later found out the bus was the better option anyway because the boat passengers are let out a few feet off the beach in the water, as there is not a dock. The buses run every 2 hours and are very punctual. We took the 11:00 bus, the drop off/pick up spot for our shuttle was in front of Souvenir Sussy. We walked down Coco beach. It ... read more

Day 1 Saturday April 14th We get up early and left for the airport in Nashville by 5 AM. We boarded our American Airlines flight and off we went. We had a few bumps along the way, but at 2:30 pm Costa Rica time, we touched down in Liberia. The airport was really easy and we were outside with our luggage to meet our shuttle in no time. With just a little delay a friendly driver took us the 20 minute drive to Casa Conde Beachfront Resort where we were staying. Casa Conde is a small boutique resort amongst the trees right on the Pacific Ocean. It was lovely. We were greeted with a cold towel and a fruity drink. We were upgraded to an ocean view room. It didn't have a Jacuzzi tub, but we ... read more

We drove from Monteverde to Playa Ocotol on Sunday, traveling once again the exciting Costa Rican roads. I figured if tourist buses can do these things so can I. We arrive at Villa Casa Blanca in 90 degree temps and headed straight for the beach. Being a Sunday both Playa Ocotol and Coco were full of local families (Liberia is only about an hour from here) enjoying a day off. Fires cooking fresh fish, kids playing soccer and laughing in the waves, cold beers, just the best. We finished the day off with fish tacos and more on the beach. Then back to the Villa for another evening of cards shared with the owner of the place and her friends. John and Katelyn were the first ones out on Monday, down to the beach to rent ... read more
Playa Ocotal
Villa Casa Blanca hosts
Lunch room

Wow, was just skimming the net and found our old blog. 2012 was my last entry. Life moves too fast! I am not going to update on what happened that last 5 years as most of you have connected with us through Facebook or some other from of social media. What is new now? we just opened another location in Playas del Coco. This is more like an office for Brenda and a small Scubapro retail shop. why would we move just down the street? First of all it is because we needed a separate office space. Our divemaster internship program has become very popular and this makes the shop loads of fun with movement of people moving in and out but it made working a lot harder. Trying to concentrate behind a computer with all ... read more
Our new view
Platinum Course Director

COSTA RICA WRAPPING UP WEEK ONE Sarina and I continued to dive daily in Playas del Coco, Guanacaste. In all I did eleven dives, including one night dive. The night dive was easier than I expected. It is hard to keep track of your buddies, watch your gauges for depth and time, control a camera and a dive light and still have a hand for controlling ascent and buoyancy. You must hold your hand in the light when communicating with sign language in the dark. Still, it went surprisingly well. I was comfortable. I even had time to appreciate the phosphorescence in the dark waters. Thanks to Sarina scoping out critters I even got a few good photos. The day after Sandy’s mishap, we all went to Cortez Falls. It was a tricky walk over rough ... read more

RINCON de la VIEJA ADVENTURE PARK On day three we took a day off from diving and we went to a wonderful adventure park, Rincon de la Vieja. We booked it after a day of diving, and the whole group was excited about the activities in store for us. Sarina had arranged for two cars in Costa Rica so Shane drove us all in one of our vans. We started the day with the zip line. I had a little trouble at first, coming to a halt several yards from the platform, requiring some acrobatics to reach the other side, but eventually I got the hang of it. We crossed canyons carved by the, can you believe the name, Colorado River? This river was not nearly so grand, but still the view was spectacular. Just before ... read more

DIVING IN COSTA RICA There were five of us in Coco Beach where we shared a nice two bedroom apartment. Sarina’s cousin Sandy and her husband Shane got one bedroom. Suzanne, Sarina’s aunt, and I shared the other bedroom and Sarina slept on the couch. It was a little crowded. But we had a nice lanai which gave us a little more space and since Sarina and I were diving in the mornings it worked just fine. We usually did something in the afternoon as a group; a little exploration drive, shopping, or dinner. Sometimes we ate at a restaurant and sometimes Sarina or another family member cooked. We spent one memorable evening in a pizza restaurant playing Crimes against Humanity. We were close to the beach, but I never went to it. I got in ... read more

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