December 2, 2016

||| COSTA RICA & NICARAGUA |||

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The first thing my Mother said to  me before this trip was “how safe is it for babies (toddlers)?”  I replied that the worst case scenario would be dengue fever, or a scorpion bite. One of which did nearly happen.  Not to mention an unexpected scary surprise in the ocean….

Also, 20 years ago I remember my parents talking about buying a holiday place in Costa Rica.  They didn’t – but they should of.

Tamarindo, Costa Rica.

Definite “gringo vibe” in this far off place. High quality food, service and shopping – usually a sign of steady American visitors, but still stood a nice local touch of coconut sellers, and Costa Rican kids playing soccer in the sand.  Plus the surf was all time! Soooo many beautiful and clean beaches to be seen here. Rent a car, be prepared for expensive insurance on it, but relish in the fact of freedom to come and go as you please.

Rocco drinking a not so fresh coconut…make sure they are kept cool before you buy! ; )

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GET IN YOUR CAR and SEE:

Playa Grande – Possibly the most beautiful big beach ever?

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for Surfing and long runs/walks, it isn’t called Grande because it’s small. There were a few secret points for surf schools, and this was the place to be for sunset. I must say, this was a favourite on the entire trip!  You can rent a board right at the beach at a little shack run by Brittany.

Playa Flamingo 

for a stunning bay beach and a snorkel.  Just a place to unwind and read a book.  Seems to be the place to buy a really posh house.  25 min drive from Tamarindo.

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MY RACE CAR DRIVE TO THE HOSPITAL »

Sting Rays hide under the sand soaking up cooler waters around the tropics,  including sands near shore…..where people like to wade, swim, surf, drink margarita’s….so when you go into the shallow deapths, please do the Sting Ray shuffle to avoid what happened to me.

It was a great beautiful day. So good! I was by myself taking a walk and a quick ocean dip and then the next sensation after feeling something spongey underfoot, was a sharp stab to my inner heal.  I came hobbling out of the ocean with a bloody pouring gash and a very strange pain unlike anything felt before. That was the poison. I ran to the nearest person and asked for help and ironically he too once, had been stung by a Raya – so he knew the deal and rest assured I would survive.  The venom slowly started to work it’s way up my thigh, I could feel it doing so and my foot was in a screeching ache!! On the very fast car ride to the doctor – I held my femoral artery in my hip as the venom started to seize there. It was crazy weird. It was oddly painful. Then at the walk in clinic 30 mins late the doctor looked at my gash with a still face and shrugged. Ha! And the Sting Ray probably went back to it’s sandy bed for a rest and I, well I had a new story to tell. That was it.

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Mariachi

When I was a girl, I often visited my aunts hacienda en Mexico.  There we broke piñata’s, ate bbq corn and listened to the local bands. I’ll never get tired of the vibrant local colour of Central America.

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JJ HACIENDA a great place to stay.  (AirBnB.)

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Nicaragua

The quiet frontier. With a keen adventurous west coast vibe of good food, yoga retreats and surf. Bomber. A lot of local colour. What more do we need? Just better Spanish skills.

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My first real wave. Caught in Nica at the sweetest beginner spot in the world on my 38th birthday. SICK

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I’m going to end it there. I could write a long novel on my trip here, but there’s no need. I can’t compete with these photo’s….I hope you can also enjoy this area of the world. Pack less, learn more and experience some earth.