Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Costa Rica - Our Resort
This photo, one of my favourites, is one I took looking at the water and beach through the tree. I think its an interesting shot.
I've put together a slide show of mostly resort photos below. I'll talk about our zip line adventure through the rainforest and our sunset sail in future posts.
We had uneventful 5 hour flights both there and home and I was able to watch two more Oscar nominated movies, Elizabeth The Golden Age and Micheal Clayton, both of which I liked.
We landed at the airport in Liberia in the Guanacaste province of Costa Rica. We walked out of the plane and down the stairs to the pavement then passed through immigration in what looked to be an airport hanger. This airport is relatively new, (it opened in 1996) allowing this area of Costa Rica to more recently market itself to tourists. From what I could observe on the drive from the airport to the resort, it looked like there was a fair bit of ongoing development.
My first impression on the drive to the resort was how dry it looked. I later learned that it is the dry season in Guanacaste, most of the rain occurs further inland and towards the Carribean side of Costa Rica. Our resort the Hilton Papagayo was on a sheltered bay heading into the Pacific ocean. You'll see from the pics that the resort is spread out on the hillside with accomodations in two to 4 room bungalows with a couple of larger 8 room buildings as well. We were in a 4 room bungalow near the top of the resort with an oceanview. The resort runs shuttles throughout so we didn't have to walk the steep hill back and forth to our room. There was a large infinity pool with swim up bar as well as tiki shelters lining the way to the beach. We spent most of our time under a tiki shelter reading and drinking pina coladas! The resort is beautifully landscaped with bougainvilleas, hibiscus and palms. I was also impressed with the hillside covered with cactus.
The volcanic nature of Costa Rica is readily evident in the black volcanic rock along the beach and the resulting black sand. On sunny days the water looked blue but when overcast it reflects as black. It was hot, around 35 celsius, most days with some afternoons becoming overcast. That was Ok because you can't really stay out in that hot sun all day. I often moved to the shade.
The staff were very friendly, willingly teaching us spanish words like, con mucho gusto, and more slowly than I would have liked, some of my high school spanish came back to me. The all inclusive nature of this resort meant we didn't have to worry about paying for drinks or food and while the food was not the quality of a cruise ship, considering their location and probably, limited availability, was still quite decent. And they did make a mean pina colada! Have I mentioned that I like pina coladas!
More trip details to come in future posts.