posted by Mandy and Kevin
07.02.2011 - 21.02.2011 90 °F
As we left the island of Omotepe, we had mixed feelings~ sad to be leaving Nicaragua, but excited about the prospects of Costa Rica, as this is a place we both have been wanting to go to for a long time. After some research and advice from friends, we decided to head to the Nicoya Peninsula for some relaxation on the beach, specifically, the small town of Samara. Crossing the border from Nicaragua to Costa Rica proved to be the biggest challenge of our trip thus far. In short, it started as a 3 hour bumpy school bus ride on a dirt road in Omotepe, and after a 2 hour wait for the hour long ferry, we putted back to the mainland, negotiated with a taxi for a 30 minute ride to the border, and then the real fun started. We stood in the sweltering heat for 2 ½ hours to exit Costa Rica (delayed because 2 freaks from the Oregon Circus cut in line and were on some sort of “list”). Then hopped on a 3 hour bus to Liberia, only to find that there was a local festival and it took checking with 5 hostels to find a room. We rewarded ourselves with Pizza Hut for dinner. The next day we finally arrived to the beach town of Samara. The next few days were spent lounging on the beach, taking long walks on the shore and mastering the art of surfing. Samara's small beach breaks were perfect for learning. We both took lessons, which helped Kevin improve and helped Mandy realize that boogie boarding is just fine. After 3 days, it was time to move south, to another small beach town, Montezuma. We met up with a couple from the states that we befriended in Samara and spent the day beach hopping on ATVs.
Each beach was more spectacular than the other, but our favorite was Playa Hermosa.
The ATVs were fun~ finally some transportation of our own! Only one small incident occurred~ crashing into an embankment when avoiding a massive pothole. No injuries, thankfully! Unfortunately, Kevin spent the remaining days laid up in bed, with a bad case of Montezuma's revenge. It quickly passed, just in time to hop on another bus to head further south to yet another small beach town, Uvita. We were fortunate to be able to crash at Mandy's friend, Kelly's awesome surf shack for a few days. Our activities included biking from jungle river waterfalls to the beach, and Kevin surfing some larger beach breaks.
It was nice to be off the beaten traveler's path for a few days. Our last destination was the Osa Peninsula town of Bahia Drake, recommended by all Costa Rican travelers. We were amazed by the natural, untouched beauty of the area~ acres and acres of wild jungle, surrounded by sandy and rocky beaches, on the bright blue coastal waters of the pacific. The highlight was our tour of Corcovado National Park. Wildlife sightings included scarlet macaws, toucans, parrots and many other exotic birds, 3 different types of monkeys, wild boars, tapirs, crocodiles and dolphins. The Osa Peninsula is a majestic place that we would recommend to any visitor of Costa Rica!