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Costa Rica
Green Sea Turtle nest hatching
“Leave only footprints, take only memories” (...and maybe some pictures)

Brief Itinerary

12/6/2014 – Day One: 2:45am Up and getting ready to start our adventure 3:40am Picked up by Majestic Limo Service. 6:45am Just taking off. 1:15pm We have landed and met by Globus and checked in to hotel. 5:20pm Sallyann, Fred, Barbara & I went for a walk around the neighborhood.  12/7/2014 – Day Two: 5:20am We are up and getting ready for our first day on tour.  6:00am Breakfast buffet at the hotel restaurant. 7:00am We are on the bus. 7:40am Downtown San Jose at the National Theater for a group photo 7:55am Turning onto Costa Rica route 32 Tortuguero National Park. 10:00am Just finished a rest stop for a second breakfast and restroom break.  11:35am We are now in La Pauna to transfer to boat to the Pachira Lodge 12 Noon Board boat to Pachira Lodge 12:50pm We have arrived at Pachira Lodge right on the river. 2:00pm Lunch at the lodge is over.  Very good food. 2:45pm Boat ride to the village of Tortuguero. 4:00pm We are standing on a beach in Costa Rica. 8:25pm Dinner is done.  Very nice. 9:00pm We are in bed in room #4. 12/8/2014 – Day Three: 8:00am Another very filling breakfast buffet is behind us.  8:30am We start the canal tour.  11:00am Back from canal tour.  There was pizza and beverages waiting. 12:30pm Met Sallyann & Fred for lunch 1:45pm We headed out to walk around the property.  4:00pm Boat ride to look for turtle nest hatchings.  We saw two nests hatch. 6:30pm Dinner 9:00pm Barbara and I all packed and ready to move on to our next hotel. 12/9/2014 – Day Four: 7:50am Luggage was picked up by our rooms at about 7am.  Breakfast is done.  8:00am On the boat and heading out of Tortuguero National Park. 9:35am We are standing in the restaurant watching as the bus pulls up. 10:50am We just stopped at a banana plantation.  11:20am We are currently passing thru the village of Cariari on route 247. 11:40am Driving through Guápiles and turn off route 247 onto route 32. 12:30pm We just finished lunch. 1:00pm Turned off Route 32 onto Route 4 and crossed the Sarapiqui River near the village of Sarapiqui. 1:50pm We just pulled into the “Corsicana Pineapple Farm” in Sarapiqui. 2:55pm Pineapple farm tour is over.  3:40pm Driving through San Miguel where we turned off Route 126. 4:50pm At Tilajari Hotel Resort on Route 4 in Muelle de San Carlos.  7:00pm Very nice dinner.  First meal that wasn’t buffet.  12/10/2014 – Day Five: 7:00am I met Sallyann, Fred and Barbara in the restaurant for breakfast. 9:00am We are at Arenal Volcano and getting ready for our hike on the slope.  11:30am Hit the peak and now heading back down.  12:15pm We are down from the volcano and in the parking lot.  1:30pm We are back at the hotel.  2:50pm Back on the bus and heading towards La Fortuna for some shopping. 4:12pm We are stopping to view Arenal Lake for photos.  5:00pm We are at “Eco Termales Fortuna” hot springs. 6:30pm Dinner is local food at Eco Termales Hot Springs. 12/11/2014 – Day Six: 5:50am We are up and dressed. 6:25am Sallyann, Fred, Barbara and I have found the Butterfly Garden. 6:00am Walked to the restaurant for breakfast.  7:30am We have checked out of our rooms and are on the bus. 9:25am We have stopped for shopping and restrooms. 10:40am We have been driving on Route 1 or the Pan American Highway. 1:20pm Lunch at Restaurante Tico y Rico in Santa Elena. 2:10pm At Sky Adventures for the Sky Walk hanging bridges. 3:55pm Next stop is the “Frog Pond of Monteverde”.  5:30pm We just got into our rooms at Hotel El Establo.  6:00pm Up the mountain for our night tour of the cloud forest.  7:30pm Dinner not included & we just snack. 8:00pm We are in for the night.  12/12/2014 – Day Seven: 7:15am Another very good breakfast buffet.  The food has been great. 8:10am On the bus heading to our next adventure.  8:30am We are at the Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve for a hike. 10:20am Back on the bus.  10:45am We are at El Trapiche farm.  12:30pm Lunch was part of the tour at El Trapiche Farm.  6:00pm We got back to our room around 2pm.  8:55pm Farewell dinner is over.  12/13/2014 – Day Eight: 7:15am Up a little early and we are already dressed and packed and ready. 9:15am Head towards the Pacific Ocean and Manuel Antonio Park area.  11:00am We have just turned south on Highway 1 (the Pan American Highway). 11:30am Stop for pictures right next to the Pacific Ocean. 12:00pm Stop at Rio Grande de Tarcoles and huge Crocodiles.  12:50pm We stopped at a souvenir shop for a rest and potty break. 2:30pm We pulled up to the Hotel Parador and checked in.  4:00pm We have unpacked as much as we need to.  6:00pm Put off “Mysteries of the Night” til tomorrow night.  7:00pm Changed into bathing suits and walked to the ‘adult pool’. 12/14/2014 – Day Nine: 6:30am Early breakfast. 7:50am We are on the bus headed for Manuel Antonio National Park. 11:40am  We finished the lunch included with the tour.  12:30PM We are back on the bus and headed back to the hotel.  1:45pm Another dip in the adult pool. 5:50pm We just finished dinner.  6:00pm We are at the desk for our “Mysteries of the Night” tour.  8:00pm We are back in the room and getting ready for bed.  Tomorrow is our last full day in Costa Rica . 12/15/2014 – Day Ten: 6:30am Our last Costa Rica breakfast buffet.  6:40am Stop for a Three-toed Sloth in a nearby tree. 7:00am Stop for a Fiery-billed Aracari sitting at the top of a tree.  7:05am Stop for a Chestnut-mandibled Aracari. 7:15am At this stop we see: Anhinga, Brown Pelican and Royal Terns. 7:25am Another birding stop:  Black-necked Stilt, Black-bellied Whistling-Ducks, Northern Jaçana, Spotted Sandpiper and Willet. 8:15am Another birding stop for a Purple Gallinule. 8:30am Stop for pictures of a juvenile Gray Hawk on power lines. 8:40am And yet another stop.  Scarlet Macaws!  9:15am We stopped at Carara National Park for a hike in the forest.  10:23am Hike in Carara National Park is done on the way to our Crocodile Adventure boat ride. 10:30am We have arrived at Jungle Crocodile Safari 10:48am We are in a Jungle Tour boat on the Tárcoles River. 12:15pm We are back at the dock for lunch.  1:20pm Lunch, restroom break and shopping done we are ready to go. 1:33pm We are not at Meandering Lagoon Trail, near Tarcoles for hike. 2:50pm Scarlet Macaws. 3:12pm Back on the van and heading back. 4:30pm Thank you Alfonso. 5:00pm A Howler Monkey in the trees behind our unit. 6:30pm On our way to dinner. 7:30pm Sitting around the adult pool polishing off a bottle of wine. 9:00pm Back in the room.  12/16/2014 – Day Eleven: 4:50am Getting ready to leave. 5:15am We are listening for the Howler Monkeys again.  6:30am On the bus heading for San Jose and the airport.  8:30am Back on the bus after a quick break and shopping.  9:20am We are in the airport.  Made good time even with a few stops.  12:25pm Barbara and I are in our seats on the plane.  4:00pm Just flew over the Florida Keys. 6:10pm We are on our approach to Newark Airport.  We are close to home. 9:30pm The vacation is officially over… we are at Barbara’s house with all our luggage.