As I was going through my pictures from our ten days in Costa Rica, I was torn – I was slightly disappointed in my lack of pictures from our trip! I didn’t take as many pictures as I thought, but now, looking back on our time in Costa Rica – I hardly had my phone on me, which, frankly, is a good thing. I actually had the time and space from the constant connectivity (news, friends, family, Facebook, emails, instagram etc etc etc) and it was a welcome break. For those of you who follow me on instagram, you know I was still posting (obvi) but maybe not to the same degree you thought I would be!
We spent half of our time in Costa Rica in Tamarindo at the boyfriend’s uncle’s condo (see the link below) – it is available for rent on VRBO and I can’t recommend it enough. It is a gorgeous three bedroom, four bathroom condo with a west-facing view of the ocean… perfect for sunset watching! There is a fab outdoor seating area complete with dining table and sun loungers – it is right by the pool and is steps away from the ocean. Absolutely amazing.
Playa Conchal and Playa Brasilito were right near our hotel for the second half of the trip. It was a lot less touristy than other areas around Tamarindo and the Guanacaste region. Brasilito only had a handful of restaurants and a couple hotels, which was a nice break from the concentration of tourists in Tamarindo. We even saw a whole group of monkeys climbing through the trees moving inland one evening.
On our drive from the coast to the Liberia airport on the last full day in Costa Rica, we decided to take a detour to check out The Shack (known for their nachos and smoothies… which obviously I couldn’t pass up). After eating, we GPS’ed our way back to the Liberia airport. The GPS read… 10 km on Highway 911 – The Monkey Trail…
And at first, it was fine. Not passive aggressive fine, actually fine… unfortunately, the paved portion of the road ended after 1km… and then we went off road…. gravel… huge potholes… uphill around a mountain… more potholes and finally the GPS said that there were only 800 meters until the right turn on to another “highway”. We start coming down a hill and we come upon… this:
Luckily a car came from the other side of the river and plowed through the water up to the side our car was on… so we went for it… zoomed through the water, both holding our breath and hoping our tiny little rental car would make it. And it did! We only had 700 m to go to the turn and we were feeling quite relieved… until we turned the next corner… AND THERE WAS AN EVEN BIGGER RIVER! We were caught between the two rivers – weighing the risk of the even bigger river versus that of the smaller river and 10km of tire-puncturing off-roading. Before I could even turn my camera on, we were plowing through it and made it to the other side. When we made it to the airport hotel in Liberia, we were both feeling pretty thankful for the amenities of the Hilton and problem-free return of the car rental.
We had an early morning flight out of Liberia but we still managed to take one last selfie at the airport before heading back to reality… but we will definitely be back to Costa Rica for more adventures!
Where we stayed:
Condo Tamarindo (Horizontes del Mar) – Playa Langosta, Tamarindo
Hotel Conchal – Brasilito
Hilton Garden Inn – Liberia Airport
Where we ate:
The Green Papaya – amazing taco bar complete with swing seating outside
Dragonfly – decent bistro in Tamarindo, great food, excellent ambience but pretty pricey compared to other local restaurants
El Chilito – one of the best meals of the trip, the guac was ranked #1 of the guac tour
Sol Frozen Yogurt – they had a cookie butter frozen yogurt that I still dream about
Soda Brasilito – tiny local hole in the wall shop, guac came in #2 and the chips were freshly fried… the local casado is fantastic.
The Shack – amazing chicken nachos and an extensive unique smoothie offering
Lola’s – one of the only places for food at Playa Avellana but is definitely worth the off-road drive it takes to get there, wonderful smoothies and home to their own special beach pig named Lolita!