Tag Archives: puerto viejo

Day 3 – Puerto Viejo to Puerto Moin

We had a nice night of rest then woke up around 10 or 11 am so as to make the 12 pm check-out time for the hotel (yeah, turns out we needed 30 extra minutes. whatev). we packed our crap and bounced out of the lotus garden only to sit in the car for five minutes with the ac on then walk across the street to an Indian restaurant (bugh, but good food) and have lunch while we perused the guidebook to decide what our next moves were going to be. I had shawarma (a sandwich consisting of pita bread, roast chicken, ensalada, and some kind of tzatziki sauce). lauren had freaky falafel (same pita bread and tzatiziki ensalada but who knows what the hell the fried green falafel is). both were damn good though and we washed it all down with water, alpina to be exact, which is owned by The Coca Cola company which runs the world apparently.

Lunch ended and we hopped in the whip and cruised out of puerto viejo on our way to puerto limon, which is about an hour or so north of puerto viejo. Lauren stopped to get some replacement colones at a bank in town then went to a supermercado and bought local coconut cookies which were a bit tough but enjoyable enough. The trip to limon was decent albeit somewhat routine.  Lauren took some videos as we drove. We stopped at a gas station to fill up the tank about halfway along, figuring it might be the only one for a good distance (it was). I went inside to use el bano and lauren stayed with the car. unbeknownst to either of us, we were both getting laughed at by costa ricans simultaneously. I for asking where the bathroom was in my best spanish and lauren for not being able to drive a manual car and move the piece out of the way of the pump.

ol rental carAfter that we continued on to limon/moin which has horribly narrow/ windy roads, lots of wild perros, and even more unsavory locals (JK! not really . . .there’s piles of basura and I’m sure doodoo in the street). Lauren spoke on the phone to francesca, the wife of this dude named modesto who runs a tour guide business for tortuguero (our intended destination) out of moin. They chatted and decided for us to stay the night at a hotel called Mar Azul in Puerto Moin. During one of the phone calls, the service was lost and the call cut short. We figured, oh well we’ll talk to her as soon as we get to moin. somehow we found moin and the hotel but kept driving past it into the wilderness on the dirt road that led into moin. We thought maybe we could drive ourselves all the way to tortuguero and avoid the canal tour. We drove about 25 miles past puerto moin, over coconuts, mud pits, and open beaches ( I said it, we drove ONTO the beach).

Me after murderin some coconutsAt one of the beaches we stopped for a little rest and exploration. I tried to knock down a coconut from a palm tree with a smaller coconut I found on the ground (as i had done the previous night in puerto viejo but with rocks). That endeavor being flighty, lauren and I worked together to concoct a way to wrangle one of the elusive coconuts from a palm tree. We found a washed up piece of driftwood, a forgotten bit of plastic tie, another fallen branch, and a machete and collaborated our materials and brains until we finally pulled down a whomping mo fo of a coconut, or so we thought. I went to work on that thing with my machete on the beach. Lauren took some pictures as I mangled the nut. I was able to hack it open and lauren and I sat staring at the open ocean and sipping on fresh coconut milk then we ate the innards of the coconut. The water and rind were both delicious and even more so because we murdered that shiz together on the beach.

Lauren learned how to drive a manual four wheel drive suv offroad next and, surprise, she DIDN’T stall the first time. Impressive I must say. It started raining so I took over the wheel of the Suzuki monster. We busted through the costa rican jungle at about 100 or so kilometers an hour in the down pour back to hotel Mar Azul. As soon as we got there we parked and dragged ourselves up to the bar in search of a room for the night. The matron of the hotel didn’t speak english but a really cool bar patron from nicaragua named Fausto did and he helped us make our reservation. I bought him a beer to thank him, then lauren and I sat down for dinner.

bar and restaurant at mar azule in moinAs reggae music wafted through the open-air bar, Fausto intermittently bought Lauren and I beers (Imperial and Pilsner) as well as gallo pinto (beans and rice). We both ordered arroz con pollo for dinner, which consisted of a plate of fried chicken and rice, ensalada, and papas fritas. Pretty good food. As we finished the meal with a cacique and coca cola Fausto literally gave the shirt off his back to another quite drunk and quite cold local. We bid farewell, thanked everyone for their kidness, then retired to our room. It had a fully functioning bathroom so we both showered then bedded down for the night

. . . except the bed was dirty as hell and caused both of our allergies to flare uncontrollably. lauren’s pillow smelled of feces so we both put down camping gear (sleeping bags, pads, sacks, etc.) and slept peacefully on that.

YouTube yum!

YouTube painted trees. These are just for decoration

YouTube Crappy houses outside limon

YouTube Driving beachside from puerto viejo to puerto moin

YouTube Driving on the beach near moin. This is the only way to get to the next town other than by boat or plane.

YouTube On the phone while driving on the beach. Driving on the beach was legal but being on the phone was not.

YouTube Stopped for a snack yo!

Day 2 – A day in Puerto Viejo – Caribbean Costa Rica at its best

The next day I actually got some internet and tried to resolve my illstreet issues for an hour and then got lunch at a Caribbean food restaurant.  We went to the internet café in town after lunch to finish up illstreet stuff and the internet was AWFUL.  I spent about 3 hours there!

salsa bravoFor the rest of the day we just walked around hiking in the jungle and on the beach. Puerto Viejo is actually the home of the an awesome surf break called Salsa Bravo (Wild Sause).  We went for a sunset swim in playa cochles, a few km hike away to get all the jungle dirt off of us and then stayed damp the rest of the night because the humidity is so high.

On the walk back, we went to a cabina place with a restaurant and tried a local liquor made from sugar cane.  It’s called cacique and it is a guaro liquor. We walked the rest of the way back to change clothes and went to dinner down the street at Loco natural.  There was two belgian girls playing music and supposedly one of them was famous in Belgum. I got a ginger/pineapple something or other drink and fish in a thai peanut cinnamon sauce to eat.  Lauren had a guaro sour to drink and chicken in a tandoorin curry sauce.  Both were awesome.

johnnys bar and clubAfter dinner we walked through the darkened streets of puerto viejo, past a pretty alright place called johnny’s, then past some dude “slinging.”  We couldn’t find anything that looked better than johnny’s so we went back there. We drank imperial ON the beach . . . literally.  The patio table and chairs were on the sand, so close to the water that the waves were crashing at our feet.  Lauren’s chair sunk in the sand and she fell over which made a little Tico kid laugh at her and then he tried to convince us to photograph his bait he was fishing with.  There was a huge bonfire that was continuously fed by our awesome rasta waiter who clanked beer bottles to the beat of the music playing as he brought them to the patrons. We both had to pee so we ventured into the interior of the bar/dance floor; peed in a trippy bathroom then danced for a song or two. After that we needed a breather so we stepped back outside and sat at a table next to a tree laden with lit candles for ambient lighting – cool.

voodoooooWe made friends with a dude visiting from Mexico and then some other girl and a nicaraguan guy named Miguel.  Miguel tried (being the key word) to chill and converse with the two of us. However, we couldn’t quite bridge the language barrier.  We also did some tarot readings and lauren found out she’s the devil, go figure. We eventually walked back to our room and as lauren was blacked out again she lost the rest of the colones that she had on her. Hope whatever tico or tica found them used them at least.

YouTube some gibberish about costa-ree-ree-ca after playing a trick on lauren

Day 1 – Arriving in San Jose, Costa Rica and driving to Puerto Viejo

YouTube Landing in CR!!!

So we got to Costa Rica on June, 17th 2009.  We flew into San Jose, scooped our packs and rolled out through customs with ease.  We found the shuttle to Alamo and picked up our car.  I rented a local cell phone from Alamo for about the same price as the place that screwed me and I don’t have to worry about their sketchy delivery process.  We decided we’d head straight for Puerto Viejo.  It was about 3 hours or so from San Jose.  Puerto Viejo was pretty much the only place we knew much about.  The guy I bought my boat from told us about a place called the lotus garden.  They had food and a room, so we called to reserve a spot.  We have since learned not to reserve rooms if you want the best rate.I got sleepy along the way so we got some energy drinks called max malta from a gas station.

all you can eat sushiWe arrived in Puerto Viejo around 9:30 local time and chilled and got some dinner. I had some pretty bangin all you can eat sushi and Lauren had tilapia with lemon and honey.  After dinner we got a room called Hiro and dropped off our stuff so we could check out a couple local bars and sample the local beers, imperial and pilsen.  I prefer Pilsen and Lauren prefers Imperial.  Then we each got a Long Island Iced Tea and stumbled back to the hotel.