Monday, May 30, 2011

Costa Rica

I just realized I had no updates in May. Matt reminded me that I never wrote about Costa Rica. I DID actually keep a very detailed journal while we were there. But it was on the back of a map that I left in the rental car. oops! Well, the trip was amazing. We went with our friends Jake and Emily. Costa Rica is a beautiful country. I wish I could say the people were friendly, but we got robbed within a couple hours of arriving and that kinda tainted our judge of character for the rest of the trip... About being robbed, all I have to say is that it could have been a lot worse, it reminds you that stuff is just stuff and can be replaced, and when you have a gut feeling- don't ignore it! I did snap a pic of Matt talking to the police, who were actually probably in on the whole heist.

We stayed our first few days at The Sanctuary Resort on the beach. It was kind of a ghost town. Almost completely empty. I loved it though. The staff there was very friendly, and the food was REALLY GOOD. This meal was called a Traditional Costa Rican Barbecue.
Let me point out here that this meal includes sausage, pork, steak, chicken, plantains, potatoes, veggies, corn, and tortillas. Matt polished off his plate and almost half of mine. A waiter came by and patted Matt on the back and said, "Wow! We have a winner!!" Hahahah. 

I loved the beaches, mostly because they were completely empty and it was really hot. They had black sand (which you can't see in this picture) which was also kinda fun. We spent a lot of time playing frisbee in the water and diving through the waves. I miss that!

After leaving The Sanctuary we drove about 6 hours to our next destination: The Springs Resort in Arenal, right at the volcano. One of the worst drives of my life. We knew it was going to be dirt roads the whole way, and that we would likely be on small 2 way streets. We did not know that dirt = painfully bumpy rocks, that the straight shot on the map actually turned out to be hair pin curves for hours on end, and that we would get lost, and the one lone man we could ask for directions was wielding a large machete. Hahah! We can laugh about it now, but that was a looong day. When we finally arrived at The Springs it felt like a mirage. How could this beautiful paradise be at the end of such a miserable road?? We immediately went to explore the 30+ natural mineral hot springs on the property. Nothing I could say would give this place justice. Even looking back, it feels like a dream. 

Apart from spending hours and hours in the hot springs, we also did an UNBELIEVABLE zip-line canopy tour, rode an ATV around the jungle and to the wild life preserve (I got to pet a mountain lion!), and hiked down to a waterfall. 

Ah writing about it now is bringing back all the fun memories. Our other favorite part was waking up in the morning and looking out the window at the massive volcano! No hot lava though :) they said it wouldn't be bubbling again for another few years. Our trip back was fairly uneventful (thankfully), and we were lucky to stay the night with Matt's relatives in Houston during our layover! They fed us some serious Texas bbq. Well we've been back for awhile now and this post is long over due, so I'll update on our last month sometime soon... maybe. Love you all!