Blogs from Mal Pais, Puntarenas, Costa Rica, Central America Caribbean

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Six days in the mountains (Santa Elena and Monteverde). Now we're back at the beach and happy as clams...but we did have an interesting tour of an organic coffee plantation that we would like to share. There are quite a few coffee plantation tours apparently (most brand name..for their..coffee) but the owner of our Santa Elena B&B place suggested we visit an organic coffee farm where he said we would have a more personal experience and learn about how they did coffee. We were picked up at the Rustic Ranch motel about 8 am by a driver that didn't speak English but down the hill in the town of Santa Elana we picked up Jesus who was our interpreter for the tour. That morning the storm clouds seemed to be overhead and it looked like we ... read more
The coffee bean sprouting
These sprouts are ready to go into the ground
Cherries are the berries of the coffee plant


This is our last day at the Villa on the beach until we come back in 6 days. It's been a very relaxing week and we really haven't done anything very exciting. After reading the Internet news in the morning (yes we even read the Kansas City Star), we have breakfast, take a walk on the beach and then decide whether to sit under the trees and watch the ocean (while reading a book) or go to the pool (and read a book). Either way we stay in the shade so although we have gotten a little color, we're being careful and haven't gotten burned. We are only eating two meals--a late breakfast and an early dinner. We're usually the first ones at a restaurant and are back 'home' when all of the younger surfers hit ... read more
Flowers that look like pinecones.
Flowers in the Rancho
Mr. Iguana posing for me.


After another sleepless night on Monday night I woke up went for my morning swim, ate some bread, packed up my life and departed my smelly little abode. I walked down to the 'bus station (nothing more than a shelter next to the beach) and waited for the bus. I ran into a lovely Dutch backpacker and the French Canadians, J.P and Cat. We were all headed to the same destination: Mal pais /Santa Teresa and each of us knew nothing about how to get there! After waiting for half an hour we finally boarded the bus....now can I just say both the bus drivers and the buses themselves to an absolutely amazing job at getting passengers to their destinations safely. I mean the roads are shite! Extremely dusty and extremely bumpy but its all in ... read more
another beach shot
road to the beach
there are quads everywhere!


Well this morning we woke up bright and early, linette(our dormmate) was headed off on her adventure further north through Nicaragua, and anthony and me were headed west toward Mal Pais. Unfortunately we lost the key to our crackspot hostel tucans room. So we had to sneak our way out of the hostel...our plan to irritate the owner, once she left, we roll out...only down fall was that there is only one road in that town so if she look for us, which she did, we were screwed...luckily the bus came quickly and we were saved...muhahaha 1 for her 1 for us..Now we are posted up in mal pais hoping for some surf...there was if white water and 30min paddle out is your thing...but its not mine. Either way I paid the 3dollas for a board ... read more


Hey guys. Not sure exactly what day I am on my trip I sorta forgot but here is an update of my last three. First off we left manuel Antonio and decided to head toward tamarindo for some surf. Got on the bus to quepos. Once there we transferred to another bus toward puntarenas. after 5hrs of bumpy roads and coast line towns we arrived planning to catch another bus to liberia...didnt happen. Instead we took a taxi to the ferry and crossed over toward mountzuma to do some waterfall touring. That took another 2 to 3 hrs, and about 2 more busses. one of which had broken windows spiders every where and the roof was leaking. Yes it was raining. We arrived in montezuma around 10pm. walked to three different hostels but they were all ... read more


Wednesday: We drove along a road from Mal Pais to Cabuya C.R. that is only for those with 4 wheel drive. It skirted the Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve. We had to go across a couple of rivers (don’t do this during the rainy season!), went up and down some very steep inclines and sharp curves, but the dirt road had been recently graded and didn’t have huge pot holes and ruts. Also, we weren’t dodging people walking and biking, or avoiding ATV’s and cars passing at daredevil speeds. We were glad we took that way to get across the peninsula. We went first to another wildlife sanctuary called Rainsong. In this place, animals were rescued when they either were injured or had been people’s pets and couldn’t be released into the wild. We saw some birds, ... read more
A friendly Iguana
Aunty the anteater
Baby Monkey


Monday's Adventure We drove for almost 90 minutes (over asphalt roads with mucho grande potholes (many were about 8 inches deep or more - the rest were washboard gravel). We arrived in Curu at the Curu Wildlife Refuge. A guide took us on a tour of the area jungle. He explained that they manage the area by planting some areas with food for the animals (bananas for example). We learned about many of the native trees and animals but didn’t really see very many animals except for monkeys. There were white faced monkeys both in the jungle and a whole family of them around the area where we waited for our boat ride. I took a bunch of pictures and a video that I’ll try to upload. I apologize that parts are a little shaky. We ... read more
White faced monkey
Banana Plant
Termite nest


Brad and Tara, the owners of these villas, asked if we would like to take a tour on ATVs. He would lead it and rent ATVs for us. Everyone wanted to go so we took off with 8 ATVs and 15 people (a few were children but big enough to ride along). We left about 10 AM and hadn’t gone far when the police stopped us. Apparently, Brad was using a different rental place and found out that they didn’t have all of the ‘papers’ they were supposed to have. They then checked everyone for their driver’s license and passport documentation. Brad had forgotten to tell everyone to have passport information so some people didn’t. We had read at the airport in San Jose that it was fine to lock your passports in a safe and ... read more
And We're Off!!
On the beach
Our coache


We have really been enjoying taking things slowly. Sort of routine: Get up make some coffee and sit out on the patio. Sometime after 8:00, amble over to the Rancho to have breakfast. They always have fresh fruit, fresh squeezed orange juice, eggs to order, black beans and rice (the national food) and then something different each day like coffee cake, French toast, muffins, etc. It’s a nice place to chat with the other people that are here. Then we take a walk down the beach. The sand is easy to walk on—very firm - somewhat like Daytona Beach but not as white. The water is easy to walk in — warm with no undertow. The bigger waves are quite a distance out from the very gently sloping (almost flat) beach. We can watch the ... read more
Rancho
Pool
Beach path


We wrote the last blog while we were getting ready to leave the B&B in San Jose early in the AM and noticed I had quite a few typos. I’ll try and proof better but we were in a hurry to leave… I can now report that the roads from there to where we were going on the Pacific have some good news and some bad news… Good news is that there is a NEW toll road that is wonderful and it just opened 2 weeks ago!! I’ll include a pix from that. For Costa Rica roads….this was heaven!! But after we got off of it we found out what the real roads are like…giant pot holes and drivers that will pass on a curvy mountain road while big trucks, etc. are coming down the other ... read more
Here comes our Ferry
The Master Bedroom
The other bedroom




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