Hola! It's been a little over a month since my trip to Costa Rica, since I flew back into Toronto and home to Waterloo in that wild out-of-nowhere April ice storm. It's been over a month and I really can't pretend like I haven't been day dreaming of my perfect little spot under my beach tree right beside that breezy ocean since then. Because I for sure have. My mind is pretty much there now.
For anyone looking to travel to Central America and want something a little different than the average tropical destination, I highly recommend Costa Rica! The landscape is stunning. Vibrant, tropical and lush, there's more than just palm trees. There's thick forests full of exotic wildlife and cool plants and flowers and a volcano I could see from my balcony window that made me seriously question if a T-Rex was about to pop out at me. Jurassic Park, anyone?
There weren't any actual living dinosaurs (thankfully!) but there were more than a few iguanas, tree lizards, fearless monkeys, a crocodile at the Blue River, sloths of course, hanging around, and so many tropical fish. Costa Rica is a country that loves and protects its creatures. They are a culture ALL about environmental and wildlife conservation and it's SO amazing! They are all about living life to the fullest and even have their own saying to reflect this. It was actually the first thing we heard after stepping off the plane. Pura Vida! Or Pure Life is a greeting representative of this high-vibe culture!
So! I traveled with two of my closest friends and we stayed at the RUI Palace in Guanecaste, Liberia, on the Pacific Coast. This was the first time any of us had been to this country but it's been a bucket-list country for sure. The resort was top notch, the food was fresh and delicious (can I just say, the seaaafooodd) and they were always amazing at accommodating my gluten allergy, which was something I always worry about when traveling abroad. So if you have food allergies at all, the RUI is your go-to for vacation and has you covered!
Costa Rica is definitely all about adventures. We hiked though the rain forest at the Blue River and swam in a gorgeous waterfall along the trail. We made it to a series of hot springs and a volcanic mud bath that was a life saver on my dry winter skin. It was honestly like chipping away at everything I'd been carrying with me all winter long. It was so rejuvenating for my body, mind and soul, connecting to the earth like that. I highly recommend this excursion. Seriously, a must-do, guys!
We went snorkelling on the other side of our bay. On our way there, about 30 wild dolphins circled our boat, jumping and splashing all around us. I know I am being sappy when I say that just about brought tears to my eyes. Lol dolphins are the coolest, really. We anchored on a little reef just past Coco Beach and I will admit, even though I am obsessed with the water, I have a small, tiny, miniscule fear of fish, so swimming right with all the kinds was scary! But great. So great, all at once. I am happy that I pushed myself out of my comfort zone, faced my irrational fears and held a freaking starfish on my hand without losing my mind. So there's that! (For the record, the tiny star-fish I am holding in the photo below is NOT the one I was nervous about. THAT one was the size of my whole hand haha)
Just by this reef we stopped on a black and white clay beach that had really cool caves all around us. My friend Tamara can tell you all about the powerful currents that rushed out of them right at us! Lol. Heading back, after a terrible unexpected bout of seasickness, we were back at the resort, sipping mango pina coladas by the pool bar. Perfect cure, right?
The one thing I wasn't expecting with this destination, was how much our resort's ocean coastline (minus the volcano beside us) resembled Ontario's own Lake Huron. Because of the clay sand, the beaches are dark and not the turquoise waves of some of the islands a little more north. It was SO interesting.
The RUI Palace where we stayed was breathtaking and modern and so hard to leave. But my next trip to Costa Rica, which will hopefully be sooner than later, will be exploring more of the culture in the surrounding villas, getting even more in touch with the incredible natural habitats and the generous people.
I would love to hear where you stayed and what you did in Costa Rica. What was on your adventure list? What were your fav parts?