On the beach
17-20 September 2012
We were a bit tired after crossing through El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua in 5 days so we started our visit to Costa Rica with checking out a few beaches. In the picture below, Frida is beach camping in Montezuma – or Montefuma as the locals call it….a place for those who would like to smoke joints and drink beer and watch soccer on TV… We camped outside a very friendly small hotel, directly on the beach, but the beach was full of big dogs and within 15 minutes we had both stepped in a dog shit! Lonely Planet has Montezuma as one of the “highlights” of visiting Costa Rica…maybe they should revise the chapter a bit and add a note about the drug dealers.
We continued up to Samara Beach, where we found a nice camp site (Coco) right on the beach. Here we met up with Thomas, Nadine and their daughter Lily to discuss the shipment of our cars from Panama to Columbia and to drink a beer and enjoy their good company.
Driving through the countryside
21-22 September 2012
Driving up to Lake Arenal we decided that the normal road was too boring (and full of trucks) so we took this dirt road through the hills instead. It was very rough in places! But the views were worth it.
On the Nicoya Peninsula from Montezuma to Samara, we tried to take a short cut but instead we ended up driving forever along small dirt roads, crossing rivers and jumping potholes. However, the countryside was beautiful and very green from the recent rain.
Tortuguero – Turtles, Crocodiles and Caribian Cuisine
23-25 September 2012
Tortuguero is a remote village on the Caribian coast of Costa Rica. Tortuguero literally means the place of the turtles and it is rightfully famous for the thousands of large sea turtles that come up on the beach each year from May to October to lay their eggs. The village can only be reached by plane or by boat but it is well worth it! We spent a couple of days there, canoeing on the river and watching the 100 kg heavy turtles laying their eggs on the beach in the darkness. Magical!
We also came up very close to a group of small white-faced capuchin (monkeys) eating breakfast in a big tree by the river but this was in the middle of a big thunderstorm with the rain pouring down so there are no pictures! More distant, we heard the howler monkeys and saw the spider monkeys messing around in the tree tops. But it was not only on the canoe trip through the small tributaries in the jungle that we saw wild life. On our way from Tortuguero to the mainland we saw 3 big crocodiles taking sun on the sandy beaches along bends in the river.
Manuel Antonio National Park – a sloth heaven!
28 September 2012
Check out all the scratching on the next pictures!!! Sloth life is good!
Solo Para Aventureros!
The most beautiful Land Rover in Costa Rica (“Maersk Blue”) – Dedicated to Alfredo!
Walking, walking, walking…and then finally a summit!
29-30 September 2012
Cerro Chirripo is the highest peak in Costa Rica at 3820 m. It is located in the Cerro Chirripo National Park and is reached through a lovely but looooong walk through cloud forest and alpine terrain. From the start of the trail to the summit there is an elevation difference of 2300 m and a distance of about 20 km. Total elevation gain for the round trip is 2650 m. It is advisable to stay overnight at the Base Crestone Hut at 3395 m, especially if hiking during the wet season from May to November when one can expect rain from around noon. It rains some 5000 mm = 5 m per year here, mainly from May to November!
Sunrise from the summit of Cerro Chirripo, 30 September 2012.