March in Chicago. While most of the country seems to be enjoying some spring-like weather, the City of Big Shoulders is still getting flurries every few days. Ugh. To avoid all of that, we headed down to Costa Rica for some real-life Vitamin D last week. It was our second visit in two years and I started writing this whole long post debating the merits of the east coast versus the west coast and Puerto Viejo versus Tamarindo and then it was getting really long and I was getting impatient because I wanted to share some photos with you because I love them so much and my impatience prodded me to shelve the epic Costa Rican coast showdown and just post some damn photos. Whew, that was a long sentence.
We touched down in Liberia, Costa Rica around two in the afternoon. At this point, we had been awake for more than thirty hours if you don’t count the three hour nap we took before departing our apartment for O’Hare at 4am. Fairly exhausted but with that certain travel adrenaline you feel in a new place, we passed through customs and met our taxi driver for the ride to Tamarindo, a small town about an hour from the airport. After a quick stop at the grocery store, he dropped us at Casa Cook, home sweet home for the next few days.
That hammock? That beach? Oh, yeah, those were in our front yard. Casa Cook is a tiny, boutique-like hotel with four rooms: two stand-alone cabinas, a studio apartment and a casita off the pool. We dropped our bags in one of the stand-alone cabinas, grabbed a few cold beers and beach towels and went right into the water. 4pm and it was still over ninety-degrees. My kind of town, ya know?
Let me tell you this: no one was on the beach. For the whole trip. No one.
OK, that’s exaggerating. When you’re used to the over-crowded beaches of St. Thomas, a dozen people on a humongous beach feels like no one. I was shocked– this is high season, after all. On each of our beach visits we were at least 100 yards away from anyone else. I like people and all but this kind of private relaxation was amazing.
I think we went to bed around eight or so that first night. Woke up to monkeys in our trees and took a nice walk down the beach for Bloody Marys and vodka tonics.
We took the street way back. Lots of little restaurants and shops, bars and hostels.
The majority of our trip was spent on the beach with Walter Mosely for me, iPod for he, taking long walks and grilling.
There was lots to see no matter where we were; even on a simple walk back from the grocery. The swimsuit choices, por ejemplo.
The one excursion we took involved crocodiles, hand feeding monkeys (or rather, having them take bananas out of our closed fists), petting a calf and even letting it gnaw on our fingers (totally weird), and lots of practicing Spanish.
Overall: A++. This was truly one of the best vacations we have ever taken. And guess what? I want to go back in June!
See all of our pics on Flickr.