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Tamarindo and the surfers at my hostel

COSTA RICA | Saturday, 14 June 2008 | Views [428]

I'm finishing up three days here at Playa Tamarindo, on the northern Pacific coast of Costa Rica. I wasn't entirely sure what to expect when I came here, given Lonely Planet's utter dismissal of this beach town, and after three hours on a sweltering city bus I arrived to conclude: it is an expat surfer town. Signs are in English, condo developments are springing up everywhere, and nearly half of the storefronts along the main streets are surf shops.  
I was intending to stay at a sister hostel to the ones I stayed at in San Jose and Arenal, but after thirty minutes of looking for a yellow building with no sign I gave up and found a lovely alternative: La Botella de Leche (the milk bottle), a cow-themed hostel run by an Argentinean couple. No pool here, but there was wireless, and for $10 a night (air conditioning included) I wasn't going to refuse. The rooms are lovely and the hammocks are even better but the company of backpackers? They aren't really my style.  
So far I've been very lucky to find hostels catering to an older group, mostly travelers in their mid-twenties who were taking a break from their jobs (or between jobs). Here, unfortunately, they are mostly college students. They like to play unfortunate games like "never have I ever" and have loud, unfortunate hyena laughs at three in the morning. They also watch unfortunate movies like "The 300" at the loudest volume on the television. Fortunately, I am leaving tomorrow. :-)  
In truth, I have mostly enjoyed my time here. I went sailing and snorkeling yesterday (both for the first time!) and spent today alternating between reading in a hammock and walking on the beach. The sunsets have been spectacular (see my pictures!) and the vibe generally relaxing. The backpackers though... I could really *really* do without them.  
Anyway, tomorrow I am heading up to Nicaragua for about a week, first to Grenada and then to Leon. Then I'll sweep back down the Caribbean coast to Puerto Viejo and Bocas del Toro in Panama. And the good news? My knees have completely healed (!) and my ankle is nearly back to normal. The swelling is gone though the bruising and tenderness remain. Plus it has been a full week since I have last hurt myself! This is good!  
Hope everyone is well. Call your fathers tomorrow :-)

Tags: costa rica, hostels, tamarindo

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