The first weekend of April, a group of 12 of us journeyed to Costa Rica to celebrate one of my best friend’s 27th birthday. I had never traveled with a group that large and as much as I like to talk, ironically I have a pretty introverted personality but we all ended up having a great time.
Essentially, we set ourselves up for failure – taking an 8 p.m. Saturday night flight, landing at midnight then boarding a van to take us two hours to our rental house in Manuel Antonio only to settle in and be back up at 5 a.m. to get taken on an excursion to a different island, but it was necessary in order to take advantage of the three short days we were going to have.
Little wild pigs were all over this island, so cute.
We spent the majority of the first day on Tortuga Island, where a Catamaran took us two hours into the ocean to a gorgeous small island. They had snorkeling, jet skis, banana boats and a ton of other activities. They prepared lunch for us outdoors and when I tell y’all, Costa Rica has some of the best food I’ve had – I mean it. I vacation quite a bit but I’ve never spent the majority of my time on adventures. I’m more of a layout and relax kind-of-girl. This time around we were gone the majority of the day doing different activities which was well worth it.
The second day we spent the morning enjoying Casa De Las Cascadas before we took off to go horseback riding in the rainforest. Waking up at 6 a.m. still didn’t grant us enough time to enjoy this beautiful house. It had 3 individual bedrooms and a connected apartment. Once we got to the rainforest they paired me with a horse named Diablo. Although I’m from Texas, I’ve never rode a horse so I felt inclined to be super sweet to mine. It ended up pouring rain on us but honestly it was beautiful. You won’t get the chance to be in a Costa Rican rainforest while it rains ever again. It was a family owned business so while we were riding, the women of the family were preparing dinner for us. There was a family feel everywhere we went, literally eating in people’s homes and riding in their cars.
Side note: I felt really bad for those horses. I’m sure they’re treated well and taken very good care of but they spend their whole lives being owned and ordered around. I got a little sensitive watching the owners push and pull on them because the horses were SO obedient. I’m nothing close to an animal activist but imagine someone galloping on your back while you trek them around in 90 degree heat without any regard to how you feel. I’m legitimately going to send a postcard to check up on Diablo LOL!
The last day we went on a ziplining tour before heading into the city. I love to pretend to be athletic so the first six ziplines were a breeze for me, after that I was over it. We spent a few hours in the city walking around and dining by the beach. The locals in Costa Rica were lovely. They exuded a ton of patience and enjoyment of the simple things.
If you plan on traveling to Costa Rica, expect to pay a $30 departure tax in the airport and for your things to be searched excessively. Before boarding the plane they literally emptied everything out of my toiletry bag to make sure it was less than 3 ounces and made me throw my damn eyebrow scissors away (I won’t tell you about the fit I threw in the TSA line though). Also, be mindful of where you decide to stay in relation to where you plan to go. The cities are pretty spaced out and it’s easy to spend quite a bit of your time traveling between the activities you plan and back to your house or hotel.
My next trip is Alberta Canada, any of you guys ever been?