When we booked our flights we were given the option of having a stop over in Costa Rica. Even back then we clearly had some idea of how tiring the backpacking lark would be. So we opted for a 7 day holiday to get some relaxation in before we came home.
For the most part we were looking forward to the rest but this wasn’t always the case. About 6 weeks ago we came up with a fantastic plan to travel overland all the way to Costa Rica from Peru. Adding Ecuador, Columbia and Panama to our itinery along with one rather dodgy and complicated border crossing. This plan was abolished after 24 hours, though not for any other reason aside from finances. Heading into the unknown doesn’t worry us in the least any more.
We spent rather a lot of time researching Costa Rica. Far more research than we afforded any other destination in fact. We eventually settled on the Pacific Coast, given that the daily temperatures seemed to be 2c higher. It is the rainy season in Costa Rica at the moment so the weather forecast also told us of daily thunder storms. I love thunder storms!
The journey was mostly ok. The flight with Lacsa airlines turned out to be rather good, with a brand spanking new 150 seater Airbus and minimal turbulence. In fact the hardest part of the journey came when we exited the airport.
We tried to book a shuttle service to our hotel in the days leading up to our flight but had no luck. Being experienced at just bowling up with no transport organised we did just that and were met by a legion of competing and rather aggressive taxi drivers. Additionally the road was being loudly dug up so we attempted to retreat back into the airport for some peace so we could dig out the laptop. But our way was blocked by an armed guard.
So we ended up sat on a bench amongst the taxi drivers trying to get online. Eventually we gave up and one of the more scary looking taxi drivers offered to take us to the bus station. He was a big chap with a nervous tick so as he drove us down some obscure and shifty looking roads I mentally located my Barrytown Knifemaking Knife. My concern was unfounded though and he turned out to be rather helpful. He dropped us off at the bus office and explained the process for us.
This was yet another local bus. Most tourists in Costa Rica are Americans and you won’t be surprised to hear that they don’t go looking for old dirty uncomfortable buses. Thus this was another situation where we clearly stood out a little.
The journey was good though. It took 5 hours and we did need help to know when to get off at Playa Brasilito. But once we did a fellow passenger helped us find our hotel and from here things became perfect.
Brasilito is a small coastal town with a few small shops, a handful of restaurants and not much more.
Our hotel was good and cheap. It had a nice restaurant and bar, very few other guests and the beach was right out front. We spent many hours relaxing in hammocks as chickens wandered around us.
More importantly a beach thought to be the most beautiful in Costa Rica was just 15 minutes walk away. Conchal Beach is indeed stunning. The sand is in fact all sea shells. And because sea shells are heavier than sand the water is clearer and more blue than elsewhere. The sea was ridiculously warm also.
(Forgot to turn sunset mode off…but you get the idea…beautiful Conchal Beach, no people…perfection)
We won’t go into painful detail as to our sunbathing. It can not make for interesting reading. But suffice to say we did a lot, and swam a lot, and snorkelled. And we ate a lot. And drunk cocktails and fruit smoothies. We also took a ride round to the next bay around, Playa Flamingo. This was dripping with expensive resorts and was a drastic departure from Brasilito.
(Taken from Flamingo. Our two beaches are in the very background)
The weather was mostly perfect, with blazing sun and temperatures over 30c. Though this was the raining season so we had a daily thunderstorm. Not that this was a problem. We just used it as an excuse to take a nap.
In all Costa Rica was a fantastic end to our Latin American adventure.