Costa Rica on a Shoestring - Day 5: Puerto Viejo

Puerto Viejo Travel Blog

 › entry 26 of 31 › view all entries
Sloth Sanctuary
Around 5:00AM, my roommate woke me up and told me that our door was open.  I was half asleep and didn't think anything of it.  She noticed that her bag was missing, so I helped her look for it.  Then I checked to see if any of my things were missing.  Luckily, my backpack and camera were still on the table next to me.  We soon realized that someone had broke into our room while we were sleeping.  She walked outside to see if any other doors were left open.  She found her bag down the hall on the table.  All the cash was gone, along with her camera and ipod.  Her passport, credit cards, and IDs were left in the bag.  I couldn't believe that someone was bold enough to come into our room while we were in there sleeping.
Sloth Skeletons
  Thank goodness nothing was done to us physically.  There wasn't anything we could do this early in the morning, so we both tried to go back to sleep.

Later that morning, we found out that we weren't the only room that had gotten broken into last night.  The couple next to us found their door open too, but nothing was taken.  We think it's because they placed all their belongings in the back of the room, making it more difficult to take.  The two girls staying in the last room down the hall had both their day packs stolen.  Luckily, they had their passports and credit cards in their main bag.  The thief even stole one of the girls cellphone that was placed on the table right next to her face.  We think the thief broke into our rooms by sliding a knife or something through the door frame to open the lock.
Toyota
  None of us had realized that we could dead bolt the lock and the chain locks were broken.  Our guide explained the situation to the hotel clerk and police officer. We made a stop at the police station to file police reports.

We tried to continue the day as normal as possible. Our guide put together a great excursion package for all of us.  Our first stop was the Frog Garden.  I opted to skip this activity and save $8, I've already seen my share of frogs at the zoo.  A few of us waiting in the bus while the rest of the group went into the frog garden. 

After about 40 minutes, we headed to the Sloth Sanctuary.  We watched a cool video that gave a brief history of the sanctuary and what they strive to do here.  The sanctuary started off as a bed & breakfast until they decided to rescue a baby sloth named Buttercup.
Millie
  They were successful with Buttercup and more injured/orphaned sloths started showing up at their door step that they decided to became a sloth sanctuary. The video ended with a really fun and catchy original sloth song, I wish I could get a copy of it.  After the video, our guide went over the two types of sloths.  She went over the main differences between the two sloths, using skeleton models.  Then we walked over to a room that held 5 adult sloths in cages.  They each had a unique story about how they arrived at the sanctuary.  They were sleeping when we were visiting, if they were more active we probably could have touched and held them.  It was still really cool and interesting to see the sloths.  After we learned about each adult sloth, we moved over to see the baby sloths.
  They were so adorable, but we weren't allowed to touch them.  There was a box of 4 baby sloths sleeping together, they were super cute.  One of them was sprawled out and comfortably sleeping.  Across the way there were some clear storage boxes with white towels and a couple of smaller baby sloths sleeping in there.  One baby was super active and climbing along the side of the box, his name was Alfie.  It was interesting watching him maneuver slowing around the box.  In the corner, sleeping in a hanging chair was Buttercup.  She reminded me of a muppet, her face and features looked so goofy to me.  She just sleeps all day and occasionally climbs up around the chair.  If I could be any animals, I would be a sloth.
Baby Sloths
The overall sloth sanctuary was totally awesome and very educational, I highly recommend checking it out. 

Our next stop was the Chocolate House, where we learned how the indigenous tribes of Costa Rica made chocolate.  They walked us through all the steps of making chocolate.  You start with a cocoa fruit pod and remove the seeds.  The next steps involved drying the seeds, separating the shell from the seed, grinding the seed into a paste, boiling the paste, separating the coco butter and paste, adding flavors to the paste, and then you end up with chocolate.  We sampled all the different chocolate flavors: milk, mint, ginger, pepper, coconut milk, and many more.  The chocolate wasn't like the chocolate I was use to eating at home, it was more sugary than creamy.
  It was pretty good, we all bought a few pieces to bring back home.  

Our last stop was at a Iguana Farm.  There were several cages full of iguanas at different maturity levels.  The adult iguanas were fenced off in pens around the property.  I wasn't very interested in the Iguana Farm, we only stayed for a few minutes to walk around the farm.

After the tours, we drove over to Puerto Viejo.  We stopped at Manzanillo to check out the beaches and have lunch.  We originally had planned to spend more time at the nature reserve, but because of the late start due to the robbery last night we didn't have enough time.  We checked into our hotel, Kaya's Place and hung out there for the rest of the night.  We ate dinner at the restaurant downstairs and had some drinks at the bar. 
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Sloth Sanctuary
Sloth Sanctuary
Sloth Skeletons
Sloth Skeletons
Toyota
Toyota
Millie
Millie
Baby Sloths
Baby Sloths
Sloth and her teddy
Sloth and her teddy
Alfie
Alfie
Alfie
Alfie
Buttercup, the first sloth
Buttercup, the first sloth
Chocolate House
Chocolate House
Cocoa Tree
Cocoa Tree
Coco Butter
Coco Butter
Chocolate samples
Chocolate samples
Iguana Farm
Iguana Farm