Embarking on an exploration of this wondrous realm called Costa Rica is akin to embarking on an illuminating eco-pilgrimage. Amidst these luxuriant landscapes, hummingbirds serve as bridges between realms, their delicate wings symbolizing the ephemeral nature of existence itself. The partnership between hummingbirds and orchids spoke volumes of interdependence, mirroring the intricate web of connections that sustain all forms of life. Capuchin monkeys, as mediators between the earthly and spiritual planes, played a vital part in seeding forests and symbolizing the cyclical nature of life's rhythms.
Aloft in the dense canopy the sloth hangs tight as a living embodiment of nature's mastery in adapting to a tranquil existence.The sloth's unhurried way of life was a reflection of detachment from the frenzied pace of the world, embodying ideals of contemplation, patience, and deliberate purpose. Its arboreal habitat and demeanor were a living manifestation of harmonious coexistence with nature's rhythms. The sloth served as a gentle reminder to find wisdom and meaning within life's unhurried journey.
Within the warm embrace of Costa Rica's landscapes, this trip through ancient cultures, botanical wonders, and captivating fauna beckons us to partake in a timeless dance of connection, serenity, and the exalted beauty of existence itself.
A TRAVELOG OF OUR ITINERARY
Our journey commences with an early morning carpool to JFK, followed by a brisk dash between terminals at the Miami airport. As we descend towards the awaited paradise, my window seat unveils a captivating landscape - a forest full of meandering rivers merging into the expansive ocean, a blend of waters. Landing in San Jose, the capital city, evokes nostalgia, reminiscent of our Indian childhood. The streets and houses mirror the cozy corners etched into memory
Day 1 - Exploring Volcán Poas and La Paz Waterfall
Ready for a whiff of sulfur? Absolutely! Less than two hours from San Jose lies the active Volcano Poas, an imposing spectacle with a hint of intimidation. Standing atop the crater, we marvel at its stillness today, mindful of its potential fury. Conversations with volcanologists enrich our visit, sparking discussions about "fate and free will."
La Paz Waterfalls prove a must-see, its cascading waters emerging from the rainforest, as we hike through a paved path in the vegetation. A day filled with capturing moments with Senor Toucan, vibrant butterflies as companions, and observing restless big cats pacing, culminates in a fulfilling trip.
Day 2 - Chachagua Rainforest Eco Lodge
An overnight stay at Chachagua Rainforest Eco Lodge becomes a unique adventure for many. Embracing an eco-friendly lifestyle amidst the constant chorus of cicadas and the nocturnal creatures makes for an enchantingly eerie night. The day unfolds with a morning stroll to an ancient ceiba tree, its towering height suggests a symbolic link between terrestrial and celestial realms. Afternoon involves mint lemonades, art journaling, and embracing the surroundings.
Day 3 - Arenal Springs
Exploring Arenal is like experiencing a pilgrimage. Arriving after sunset, Arenal's magnificence unfolds the following morning — a majestic monolith towering over La Fortuna. Whether it's Arenal or Arunachala, mountains hold a meditative power, inviting stillness and wonder.
Each person follows their path — siblings bonding through an ATV tour, friends hiking for an up-close view of the mountain peak, and others uniting over coffee, carrot cake, nature journaling, and a night tour adventure.
Day 4 - Whitewater Rafting Rio Balsa
The group sets out on a whitewater rafting adventure along the River Balsa. A full day is dedicated to mastering teamwork, conquering hidden fears, and even experiencing the thrill of going overboard. This day caters to both adrenaline junkies and those less inclined towards thrill-seeking.
Day 5 - Sky Walk on Hanging Bridges , Tram and Zipline
Walking above a rainforest canopy is indescribable. Awe fills me as I traverse hanging bridges, gazing into the panorama of emerald depths below. Observing the rainforest from ground level and the treetops reveals the intricate layers of plant life. From leaf cutter ants to epiphytic orchids, bromeliads, and ferns, it's a mystery wrapped in each substrata. Our naturalist guide, affectionately titled as Pedro Pascal by our troop leader, navigates us through the steep wet slopes, spotting wildlife and sharing insights.
The zipline adventure begins with a cable car ascending through the rainforest canopy to an Arenal Volcano viewpoint. Zipping from platform to platform, we're treated to a bird's-eye view of the forest canopy and the expansive Arenal lake.
Day 6 - Monteverde
Our journey to the revered cloud forest of Monteverde is marked by unexpected elements. A bus ride to Arenal lake's edge is followed by a boat journey, accompanied with a touch of rain. Crossing the lake, we navigate a muddy slope with our luggage, but the crew and their belongings are transported safely. Each person holds a version of this adventure in their memories.
Day 7 - Curi Cancha Reserve guided hike
The Curi-Cancha Reserve unveils a botanical tapestry intertwined with unique wildlife. Nestled within celestial cloud forests, the resplendent Quetzal — a symbol of avian divinity — adorns the landscape. Its iridescent green and fiery red plumage captivate as a living masterpiece. We're fortunate to spot four Quetzals, alongside hummingbirds, Capuchin monkeys, and rare Spider Monkeys. The remarkable strangled ficus tree stands as a testament to generations past and present.
Day 8 - Strolling through Santa Elena
A leisurely day entails journaling our journey, savoring local cuisine, and exploring Santa Elena — a haven for artists. The town offers a treasure trove of independent artists' works, inspiring allured souls to embrace art and nature. A dream for shopaholics, the day is filled with coffee beans, "Covid Killer" hot sauces, and artistic souvenirs.
Day 9 - Manuel Antonio National Park
We arrive in Quepos, Manuel Antonio, following a winding descent from Monteverde. Our journey involves traversing Jaco county and a stop at a Rio Tarcoles dhaba, where we stroll across a bridge observing the utterly still and patient crocodiles below. Early exploration of the National Park reveals diverse ecosystems teeming with flora and fauna.
Day 10 - Biophilia Medicinal plant tour
Our final day revolves around understanding the medicinal wonders of the plant world, passed down by indigenous communities. A quick orientation about the park in an open bamboo structure segues into a paved path lined with meticulously cultivated plant species. Discovering the benefits of these botanical gifts — sampling citronella tea, inhaling crushed tea tree leaves, and adorning natural lip color and fern tattoos — completes our informative tour.
We return home enchanted with the experiences gathered. As we ascend into the skies we say PURA VIDA to the paradise below where every inch is soaked in divinity.
The silent message is eternally flowing from Mother nature in her many forms of glory, showing her magic, mystery and universal consciousness present in all living things.