Puerto Viejo

Puerto Viejo Travel Blog

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My plan was to get the 10:30am bus to Puerto Viejo. Got up at 8:30am and thought that would leave me in pretty good shape. However I got a bit distracted emailing people and was only ready to leave the hostel at 9:45am. Not a problem if the bus had left from the Coca Cola terminal, but what I only found out then was that the buses to the Caribbean coast leave from another terminal that is pretty far away. Well, no problem - the next bus left at noon so I spent a bit more time emailing and then went on my way. I got there at the eleventh hour (11:45am to be exact) and just managed to secure myself the last ticket on the 12 o'clock bus which promptly left without time to spare.

Even though this looked like a luxury bus from the outside, they've somehow managed to cram more seats in than usual and I was the most cramped I've ever been - more so than on any chicken bus I've been on - and to think that I paid over 3500 colones for this which is only a 4 hour bus ride whereas the 6 hour ride from San Jose to Tamarindo cost only 2800 colones. One look at the people on the bus explained everything - almost no locales, only gringos.

The trip to the coast was beautiful. It's amazing how different the Caribbean coast is from the Pacific coast; in Monteverde we were told that the air moves from the Caribbean to the Pacific and is pushed up by the continental divide, the mountain range that runs down the middle of central america, which causes the air to cool and the water to condense. Thus most of the water falls on the Caribbean side and much less makes it over to the Pacific which explains why Guacanaste was pretty brown and dry whereas the Caribbean side is lush and green as I had pictured Costa Rica before and from where I think it got its name.

Puerto Viejo is another wonderfully laid back Caribbean town. I wish I had more time to spend there. I got a room in Hotel Puerto Viejo. The room is only $6 a night but it's the biggest dive I've been in so far and reminds me of the room Richard stays in in Thailand in the opening scene of "The Beach". I didn't care as I'm trying to save money but I actually slept alright and it was no problem.
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