I was cleaning my apartment this weekend and found my passport under a large stack of papers. I don’t know what it was doing there because I haven’t used it in almost a year, but I was glad I found it because it allowed me to look at all the stamps inside. I have already written about my trips to Honduras and Ecuador, but I have not shared about my experiences in Costa Rica
I got the opportunity to go to Costa Rica for ten days with my Spanish class the summer before my senior year of high school. I went with about eighteen people total - students, teachers, and chaperons included. It was such an amazing trip! We visited four different cities: San José, Arenal, Jacó, and Monteverde. Each city was unique in its own way and was so fun for exploring and adventuring.
In San José, we took a couple of day trips to a coffee field, an observatory, and Poás Volcano
(which last erupted in 2011!). We actually hiked up to the top of the volcano and saw it smoking, which was both awesome and a good leg workout.
Arenal is famous for its volcano. It is also still active - the last time it erupted was 2010. We did not hike up that one, but went kayaking in the lake that surrounds the volcano. We also hiked to a hidden waterfall and got to swim in it.
Jacó is a city by the Pacific Ocean. We could not swim in the ocean because of the dangerous riptides, but we took a day trip to a national park where there was a beach. That was my favorite day- the beach was an oasis! It was also inhabited by monkeys who liked to steal our stuff, which was both terrifying and amusing.
Monteverde was my least favorite city, but not because it was boring. The city was beautiful - nestled in the mountains and lush green.
We got to explore the rain forest and go zip-lining and horseback riding. It was my least favorite because I was sick the whole time! The bus combined with unpaved, windy, pot-holey, bumpy mountain roads did not do good things on my stomach. I actually am surprised we did not die. There were a few times where the bus had to drive in reverse around a curve by a cliff without a guardrail. Yikes!
Costa Rica was my first country abroad, so it will always hold a special place in my heart. It is a beautiful, peaceful, safe country filled with the friendliest people. I hope to return someday! Looking back, I can’t believe all we did in ten short days. It was one action-packed trip and so, so much fun.