Good Morning!! I got in 3 quick miles this morning. They felt good and it’s nice to have it out of the way for the rest of the day. I don’t mind running in the afternoon, but getting it done first thing is pretty satisfying. It was chilly, but I think the crazy winter weather from yesterday is on the way out.
Let’s go back to Costa Rica. Literally. Let’s go, pack a bag…. No? Fine ok, I guess we can just finish up the recap then.
On our way to the beach we stopped off for one last rainforest adventure. We toured the Mystico Hanging Bridge Park which included a 2 mile guided hike over 11 suspension bridges through the forest canopy. I saw my very first monkey in the wild here and it was a magical moment for me. I was standing on a suspension bridge and saw them from very far off, foraging in the canopy of a tree. It was incredible. The following is a picture of when I saw my first wild coati, but you can imagine a very similar emotional response for when I saw the monkey. 🙂
I promise I’m really happy in that picture. We walked through sections of primary and secondary forest and saw the biggest trees I’ve ever seen in my life.
The bridges swayed a bit which made the walk more fun and the views were incredible.
The tour was a great way to see animals we would have never found on our own. Our guide spotted over 22 species of bird, two eyelash vipers, and a tarantula. I just loved this hike.
After the hanging bridges, we grabbed lunch at an adorable Swiss-Costa Rican restaurant.
I love funky restaurants that don’t quite make sense and this totally fit the bill. I loved the Swiss dishes translated in Spanish.
We arrived in Playa Carrillo right at sunset, perfect timing.
Our hotel had a beautiful patio and bay view. The next day, we were able to walk right down to the water for our next adventure, a dolphin spotting tour! To say this is what I was most excited about is an understatement. I have never seen dolphins in the wild and didn’t know what to expect from this tour. It exceeded my expectations and we got to ride along with a huge pod of dolphins to our hearts content. If I was as brave as my husband, I could have touched one they swam so close to the boat. But I was basically holding onto Everett’s ankles to keep him from falling in so I contented myself with laying along the side and having them splash in my face.
We also saw some belly flopping manta rays and sea turtles bobbing along which made my day. I had no expectation to see so much wildlife and I feel like this tour was the best thing we did on the trip.
After the dolphin tour, we went into town and had lunch at a fun pizza place where we met a local named Natalia. We were telling her how we heard so many howler monkeys in the morning, but had only had a chance to see them once. We asked where we should go to see more monkeys and she promptly invited us to her house because the monkeys stop by most mornings to eat the fruit off of her trees. We were so touched by her friendliness and offer to have us in her home. We readily agreed to meet her at her home at 6am on the last day of our trip. The next day we went kayaking out in the bay and did a bit of scuba diving. There was nowhere for me to store my camera safely to keep it dry so we don’t have any pictures of that part, but we had a great time out in the water. Totally worth the sunburn I got afterwards. By this time we were pretty tired, so we took a picnic out to the beach to relax under some palm trees for awhile.
Every time we’re near the ocean, I always have a urge to pick up my whole life and move somewhere near the water.
We made our way back to town to wander around for a bit then had dinner at our hotel. I had the best mussels of my life that night!
I loved eating outside for every meal and the seafood we had at almost every meal was so incredibly fresh and tasty. After Everett finished his fish, they brought this out for him to soak his fingers in. We felt #sofancy.
The next morning we went to visit Natalia. She met us up at a local grocery store and we walked to her house. She had a darling apartment that had an entire grove of fruit trees around it. It was so special getting to know her and walking about her property. Literally everyone we met in Costa Rica was so kind, but Natalia felt like a friend the second we met her. The monkeys didn’t come close enough to make an appearance, but that morning was one of my favorites and I’m so glad we got to spend time with Natalia.
She showed us some of the monkeys favorite trees and we came across a neighbor burning mango leaves.
After that we had to head back to San Jose and back to the airport. We had an incredible time in Costa Rica and would love to go back and explore some areas we didn’t get to this time.
What animal would you most like to see in the wild?
Me: I’d love to see a wild tapir or more monkey species.