Tortuguero

Trip Start Sep 28, 2009
1
48
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Trip End May 02, 2010


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Flag of Costa Rica  , Limón,
Monday, January 18, 2010

Had hoped to have lots of really good seafood/fish dishes here so was willing to economise on cabinas. Having checked numerous options with balconies and sea or river views ended up inland but with a nice cabina with porch & hammock for $10. The owner was helpful and generous - I really appreciated the free coffee in the mornings.

Didn't sleep well the first night - first the lightbulb kept flashing on every 30 secs despite being switched off - luckily a breaker was in my room, so found a solution, though not sure how many others I shut off power to!

No solution to the constantly barking dogs, other than staking them out on the edge of town & hoping the jaguars came & got them - apparently happens quite a lot & others at Cabins Tortuguero had seen their tracks on the beach. Ear plugs were not an option as had to hear my early alarm call - off on a 3 hour canoe tour at 6am.

The tour was great as we were able to get really close to wildlife having no noisy motor and the guide spotted plenty of stuff. Plenty of birds, including the arcari, a toucan like bird and the snakebird, a shag. There were masses of caimans, including some babies, and one even tried to jump in the boat - I guess we got too close! There were lizards, a massive male iguana in mate attracting colour scheme and a large Jesus Christ one who was really well camouflaged. The highlight for me were the otters - so noisy & playful. Sadly no manatees - although this is supposedly the best place in central america to see them, they are rarely seen, grazing mainly in untrafficked areas at dawn & dusk - very sensible given that the boat drivers move at top speed wherever possible!

For $15 the 3 hour tour was a great deal, especially as no paddling involved - the guide did all the hard work. Of course had to also pay the $10 park entry fee - got money's worth by walking the trail for a few hours though saw very little except a JC lizard or 2 and some howlers. Despite paying $1 to rent some wellies for protection from the snakes, unfortunately didn't see any. The other guys who paid for a guided tour saw nothing too so didn't feel too bad.

Some of the best sunset views over the laguna are from the bars in town, so went to the Taberna for sunset beers & some prawns - have been wanting to have rondon, a seafood, vegetable & coconut stew or at least seafood in coconut sauce,  but nowhere I've been has had it on the menu. Will keep trying as I head up the coast.
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