Well I have officially crossed a border and am now in Costa Rica. My last couple days spent in San Juan del Sur were spent lazy-ing around at the beach and in hammocks, drinking, and I even got a little dancing in
Luckily for me, there was another guy at my hostel heading in the same direction as me so we were able to navigate the Costa Rican border crossing together. I had heard some bad things about the crossing – that it was a little hectic, poorly marked, and could take hours to cross but it turned out to not be so bad after all. The entire process of getting stamped out of Nicaragua and into Costa Rica took about an hour and a half. Unfortunately though, we were not able to make it all the way to Monteverde in one day and ended up having to spend one night in a small city called Tilaran. We ran into another Winnipegger who was in the same predicament as us so the three of us shared a room for the night and then finished our bus journey together the following day.
Monteverde is a small town high up above sea level. It is lush with green foliage and It is chilly in Monteverde, particularly at night when the sun goes down.
We arrived on Superbowl Sunday so we found the local sports bar, had a couple beers, and watched the game with probably every other North American in town that evening. I also got my first taste of chiliguaro – a common drink/shot here that is essentially hot sauce mixed with Cacique which is a strong, vodka-like alcohol distilled with sugar cane and it wasn’t actually that bad! The following day I splurged to do a zipline tour which included 5 “regular” ziplines, 2 “Superman” ziplines, a rappel,a walk across 3 suspension bridges, and a Tarzan swing. The Tarzan swing was by far my favourite activity, as you free fall off a platform before swinging back again (I just wish the fall had been a little longer!).
I also did a night walk through the forest to try to spot some local wildlife and we were able to see:
- Two-toed sloths
- A Green Viper
- A Toucan, and various other birds
- A tarantula
- Some frogs
- A kingkajou
- An olingo
Though we did question the authenticity of the tour and how they were able to just “find” all these creatures in a small area, it was still neat to be able to see all the creatures in real life.
I had originally thought I might spend three nights in Monteverde but I felt like I had done all I was going to do there and wanted to get back to a beach and warmer climate so yesterday I packed up with plans to head to Montezuma. Unfortunately there were some travel snafoos and now I’m in Manuel Antonio instead but I’m not complaining; the first impression was a good one and I’m looking forward to laying on the beach today and possibly exploring the national park tomorrow.