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Pacific coast highlights

Costa Rica, day four


View Costa Rica 2022 on ToonSarah's travel map.

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Humpback whale near Caño Island

We slept much better but nevertheless I was awake around five, and when the sky grew lighter and the birds noisier I sat up to enjoy the view of the tree tops.

After breakfast we were hurried down to the jetty to be fitted for flippers for the snorkelling element of today's boat trip. Somehow I've never got on with them so although I found a pair to fit I didn't anticipate using them (and I didn't) while Chris declined completely as he's not keen on snorkelling.

Then we boarded our small but very comfortable boat for the outing. Despite warnings that it was out of season we were keeping our fingers crossed that we might spot a whale, as one had been seen during the same tour the previous day.

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On the boat to Caño Island

After the sunshine of the last few days we were surprised to see some dark clouds and even more so when it started to rain. Although of course this is a rainforest!

But the shower was soon over and a few minutes later a shout went up from one of the crew. Whales had been spotted ahead. Our captain manoeuvred us closer to the group of two females and a calf. One was breaching quite a bit; she seemed to be playing. I used my burst shoot mode and managed to get some decent photos.

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Humpback whale near Caño Island

Caño Island

After a short while with the whales (too short!) we continued to Caño Island. The five of us who wanted to snorkel got into the water with one of the guides, David, and almost immediately seemed to be surrounded by fish! He guided us towards some rocks (no coral reefs here) where I was excited to see a large turtle. Too excited as it turned out, as I managed to swallow some sea water and worse, get some inside my mask, making it hard to see anything from that point. Not being a strong swimmer I decided to head back to the boat at that point, helped by David.

There I re-joined Chris who had stayed on board. He told me about their short ride to drop off two divers with another guide, then we just drifted until the others returned. A German woman was first; like me she only felt up to a short spell in the water. The other three stayed in longer but once they were back on board we headed over to pick up the divers and then towards the island.

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Caño Island


It was a wet landing in about a foot of water. Once we were all on the beach we were given beach towels and a tub of fruit (watermelon and pineapple) to enjoy at our leisure. Chris and I found a perch on some logs where we could enjoy snack while watching the antics of the many hermit crabs. Then we strolled along the beach taking a few photos until it was time to get back on board.

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On Caño Island

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Hermit crabs


My second snorkel was less successful. I had trouble with my mask right from the start so decided to call it a day and just relax on board with Chris. The bonus was a great view of a very untimid Brown Booby who swam right up to the boat!

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Brown Boobie


When everyone was back on board we were given some brownies and then it was time to return to the hotel. It had been a great morning, with the whales the undoubted highlight for me. Although I was left wondering whether just maybe a boat trip spent just looking for and watching them might not have been feasible after all?

Drake Bay

Back at the lodge we freshened up before lunch and after the meal decided to follow the trail into town, a walk of probably a mile I reckon. We took lots of photos along the way - a tree with the most amazing root system I've ever seen; a clump of bamboo; an avenue of hibiscus (beautiful!); a pretty bird on a wire as we crossed a very wobbly suspension bridge.

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On the trail to Drake Bay

We took a few more photos on the beach and in the 'town' ...

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Drake Bay

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Old food truck

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Near Drake Bay

... before retracing our steps and stopping off in the Kalaluna Café for a cold drink with lovely views out across the bay.

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View from the Kalaluna Café

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At the Kalaluna Café

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Pelicans near the Kalaluna Café

Back at the hotel I washed the sea water out of my hair and then sat out on our terrace to sort photos and write up these notes.

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Hummingbird outside our room

The evening followed the usual pattern at this hotel, with drinks on the terrace and dinner in the open sided restaurant above.

Posted by ToonSarah 17:27 Archived in Costa Rica Tagged birds islands snorkelling flowers coast costa_rica seas crabs whale_watching Comments (11)

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