Blogs from Puntarenas, Costa Rica, Central America Caribbean


Our first full day in Costa Rica consisted mainly of us getting situated. We met Casey and Dan at a cafe in the central park of San Isidro del General (the closest city to their place) and they drove us to their house about 25 minutes from the city toward the coast. We got settled in and went for a drive to Dominical on the Pacific coast for dinner at Tortilla Flats, which was very tasty. We brought Jack along because, contrary to our North American sensibilities, dogs are allowed almost anywhere in Central America. Dan got to drive the motorbike home after dinner, which was exciting on that narrow, twisty road in the dark. Our days in Costa Rica were filled with going to the organic markets in Tinamaste and Dominical, making fresh fruit pirate ... read more
Surfing Fun
White Face Monkey
Blossom the Porcupine

After three long days of bus travel from Utila, we made it to Costa Rica. Initially, we thought we'd gloss over this beautiful country because it is more expensive than others in the region. However, we were lucky enough to have found a house sit for 2 1/2 weeks in Platanillo where we would look after a 5 month old puppy named Jack. We set this house sit up through a website called Trusted House Sitters which helps potential house sitters find accommodation in return for taking care of people's homes and (usually) animals while the homeowners are on holiday. Casey and Dan, the couple we were house sitting for, are a couple from the States who have been travelling for a few years and have settled down in Costa Rica with their rescue pup Jack. ... read more
Cost Rica Ridin'
What Did That Coconut Ever Do to You?

Sarah: We had a good last morning in Manuel Antonio - eating leftover pizza, drinking smoothies and soaking up the last few days of coastal sunshine! We arrived early evening in Santa Elena in the Monteverde cloud forest. We were pleasantly surprised by how mild an evening it was, especially compared to the hot nights we had at the coast! Once we were settled in to our room we headed out to a little restaurant recommended by the hostel owner for being good AND cheap AND with a free desert - sold. It was a very sweet little place, with what looked like 3 generations of family cooking in the kitchen and bringing out very tasty grub for us: rice, beans, chicken, all the usual suspects! The free desert of a little flat cake with dulce ... read more
The inside of the huge Strangler Fig tree near Santa Elena.
View from Monteverde cloud forest reserve.
One of our zip-lining colleagues settings out on one of the whopping lines across the valley below.

Nick: What with the salt flats tour, trip to the Amazon and visit to Machu Picchu (not to mention the bout of illness between the two), the last two or three weeks of travelling had definitely been the most intense so far and it started to catch up with us. As such, we were looking forward to our time in Costa Rica and having a few days to calm down and recuperate before the next leg. We'd wanted to visit Costa Rica for some time - it had only just been pipped to the post for our honeymoon destination by New Zealand - and when we'd drawn up our travelling plans, we couldn't resist bolting it on to the end of our South America itinerary, since we were in that neck of the woods (sort of!). ... read more
Beach, day 1
Taking a dip

Puntarenas, Costa Rica: Coffee Farms, Ox Carts and Sand Sculptures After 3 days at sea coming up from Lima, Peru we are in Puntarenas, Costa Rica in middle of Central America. We are quickly reminded that we are, once again, in the land of very hot and humid. The air feels great. Well, it turns out that we have a brand new Marcopolo bus today. It is the inaugural run and Miguel will be our driver. Both Miguel and our tour guide, Jonathan are very proud of this bus, as well they should be ;-) It has leather seats, sits 18” higher than their old buses and has, according to Miguel, a huge engine ;-) We are heading out into the mountains and countryside today. As we leave Puntarenas, we have water on both sides of ... read more
1. Coffee Beans
2. Coffee Seedings
3. Cope Drying the coffee beans

So stinking hot here today, don't remember it being this hot when we were here last. Two ships in port today, so didn't know how we would go with organising our own driver - but all went well found Francisco, a lovely local from Puntarenas - as we had been here 3 years ago and done the capital San Jose and Sarchi the craft area - we decided to do a more country and nature type tour today. Costa Rica is just so rich with wildlife -birds, crocodiles, lizards, monkeys etc - set out to see what we could find just in the wild. Saw the cutest little cappuccino monkeys. To get to see all these things we travelled along the Pan American Highway for about 30 kilometres. Huge mango, melons, cashew growing area as well ... read more

This my first entry in my blog and thought it would be a good place to start. We went to Costa Rica last month and one of the things I wanted to accomplish was to zip line. I think Costa Rica is a good place to start if you have never zip lined. We chose, or I should say I chose ,because husband wasn't wild about doing it, Monteverde in the rain forest. All the different locals have zip lining to chose from, but after some research, we chose Sky Trek. We had a family of 4 from Halifaxs and 2 young ladies from Minnesota in our group. We had 2 extremely nice guides that were very reassuring and that made the experience more "comfortable". I'm not sure husband would agree, because he has a problem ... read more

The 25th was a lovely night at sea. The next day we caught a tuna and Amanda made a nice fish pie. The 26th after my midnight watch the winds picked up to 25-30 knots. I still slept fine, but woke to help reef. My next watch I wore my foul weather gear and needed it as waves were routinely dousing the cockpit. The windvane steering is pretty cool. It's my first time with on, but uses no power and the stronger the wind, the better it works which is good because we have very little power, and lots of wind. I got a little seasick feeling yesterday. I'm using a tranderm patch since we started to help. We have been on a course that puts us out to sea a bit more that we would ... read more
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It has become crystal clear to me that we really don't understand hardship. We turn the lights on and we can see, we turn the water on and it flows and its hot, we go to the fridge and we find ice, if it's too warm we crank up the air and if it's too hot we put up the thermostat. This is what we know. That's not to say we haven't experienced difficulty in our lives, we have, its just different. Our difficulty comes in finding meaning and purpose when we have so much. And we take so much for granted. Deep thoughts for a Tuesday morning. People here seem happy, they work hard. They are very friendly and appreciate when you try to communicate with them in their language. This has been an eye ... read more

We have determined this is not a vacation we are on but an adventure. That's not a bad thing, it's just a reality. The part of this trip that is a vacation are the parks and zoos and restaurants we have visited and the part of the trip that is an adventure are the wild rides up into the mountains in the fog not knowing where we are going, no one speaks English, hot water is a luxury and everyday brings new challenges. Tonight we called a cab to go to a restaurant we had already been to, the cab driver didnt speak English but we got where we wanted to go only to find the restaurant was closed. Now what??? Somehow we communicated to him to take us somewhere good. And he did. Nice meal, ... read more

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