2 hours to check out of Panama and get booster shots!
Golfito, Banana Bay Marina
Recently, every port we come to, we are accompanied by pods of dolphins, both spotted and grey. From Panama, our first stop in Costa Rica was Golfito, where we checked in with Gabriela at Banana Bay Marina. Can you believe that she is in email contact with the Port Captain from Panama, and they send eachother Zarpes (exit papers) electronically, when cruisers pass between Panama and Costa Rica! What service. I wonder if that happens ANY WHERE ELSE in the world between two countries.
Land Trip with GianCarlo and Paola
Paola and Don planned an amazing one week land trip to discover why Costa Rica is so famous for their ecotravel. What a difference from Panama. The towns are clean, no garbage on the streets although the capital, San Jose, unfortunately has nothing much worth seeing except the old theatre and post office. Itinerary
- Day 1: Quepos to Manuel Antonio Nationalpark where we had a private tour and saw sloths, red crabs, and lots of other cool fauna and flora
- Day 2: San Jose (Teatro Nacional de Costa Rica and the post office, having lunch in a hummusaria inside a skateboard store)
- Day 3-4: La Fortuna’s 200′ waterfall and 3 hour hike with view of the Tenorio Volcano in Lake Arenal, considered a primary and secondary rainforest
- Day 5-6: Monteverde, Puntarenas stopping at The German Bakery so I could take a work call, and we could buy bread. Then, the highlight for me, was zip lining in the Selvatura Park. Don and I went on 13 cables, on 15 platforms. I did a Tarzan swing which I could have done for hours! We froze though, since we were wearing shorts and being pelted with rain and wind in the cloud forest on the longest zipline in Costa Rica!
- Day 7: 5 1/2 drive back, lunch at Jaco, a popular surf beach town.
One day, Paola and I left at 9:30 am one day, and went on a 10 mile hike up to the Mirador Las Torres, Cerro Adams park, Golfito. When we ran out of water and bananas after 4 hours, Paola saved us by climbing a tree to cut two young coconuts (pipas), which I opened with her handy knife, and we drank ate for energy. The one thing Paola had not seen during our land trip were toucans (video here), and she finally got her fill of them since it turns out they like to hang at around 1200 feet elevation.
Six and a 1/2 hours later, we returned to very surprised partners!