Saturday, 12 June 2010
Highfivers go on a road trip. Well Golfito is the wettest place on the planet, so we left. But our boat needs to be there to catch a ride on a freighter to Vancouver. Yes you heard it here first! High Five is going to the great white north. We have bought and paid for a spot on yachtpath transport. (www.yachtpath.com ) If all goes as it is supposed to , our boat will be in Vancouver around the middle of July. Meanwhile we didn’t want to stay in Golfito while we waited for this to happen. We spent 2 days scrubbing the boat with bleach to try to reduce the mould growth , although we were warned if we didn’t like mould not to stay in Golfito. We have rented a car, a Toyota Rav 4, and gone traveling around Costa Rica. On Saturday June 5 we left the boat and headed for San Jose. It was a 5 hour drive that we stretched into 6 hours by stopping in the town of Quepos for dinner. The interesting thing about stopping at Quepos was we ran into a couple from a boat called Will-o-the-Wisp. We have accidentally met this couple in Golfito, Puerto Jimenez, and now Quepos. They are a wonderful couple who have left their boat in Bocas Del Toro on the Caribbean side to travel inland for 6 weeks. Driving in a car is a bit over stimulating after traveling at 6 knots. On the boat we could see things coming for a long time. In a car things have come and gone before we could even process what it was. San Jose is considerably cooler than any place we have been in the last 7 months. It was all of 25 degrees Celsius (brrr). We went to the children’s museum, which is like science world on steroids. It started raining while we were there and it became clear we needed some socks, so we hit the mall. Latin American malls seem to be mostly about women’s high heeled shoes and fancy underwear. We sorted through these and found some socks, shoes for Gary, and umbrellas. Our next 2 nights were spent in Alejuela, a suburb of San Jose where the Volcano Poas is located. We checked into Villas Pacande, a very nice hostel 3km out of town towards the volcano. The next morning we drove 37km, and 2700 meters up a steep mountainous road to the volcano. Luckily for us the clouds were blowing in and out so we were able to see the entire crater including the boiling lake. The main crater measures 1.5 kilometers in diameter and is 300 meters deep, at the bottom there is a pit of water spewing steam and sulphorous gas. It was only 14 degrees we were cold and short of breath, but sufficiently awed by the sites. Tuesday we left the lovely gardens and friendly staff at Villas Picande and headed off to La Fortuna and another volcano. Volca Arenal is one of the ten most active volcanoes in the world, and has been actively spewing molten rocks since 1968. We checked into a cabina at Carlos Lodge. It didn’t look like much from the outside but inside it was lovely with tropical hard wood walls and cathedral ceilings. The real beauty was the huge windows looking right at the Volcano. It was shrouded in clouds when we got there but cleared after dark so we were able to see the glow at the top when it shot molten rocks into the sky. We moved around to the other side of the mountain the next day. We splurged for a hotel on this side as it is the side that the molten rocks are flowing down. Linda Loma Vista is a lovely spot with panoramic views of the Volcano, Lago Arenal and the surrounding valley. It has a nice pool, where you can swim or soak in the hot tub looking out at an active volcano. WOW!!