San Juan del Sur

23. Dezember 2008 von Roga

I finally made it to Nicaragua. First it looked like we are good in Time. It took us 4 1/2 hours to the Nicaraguan border, or better the end of the queu. The biggest problem were parking cars and the drivers. Drivers of both direction wanted to get through a road which was basically a one lane road because of the parking trucks. After about two hours we made to the costa rican border control. We got our assports back, only to be collected again with the border tax (8 USD for Germans). Then again queuing and finally the nicaraguan border control) In the meantime it was just before nine in the evening (we got to the boarder at five). Everybody has to take out their belongings and take it to customs, were a buzzer decided whether your bags will be checked in detail. The other formalities were done by the bus drivers. After it was already late, I went for the proposal of a taxi driver to bring me to San Juan del Sur for 20 USD. It was just a bit more than from Rivas and it worried that it takes long for the bus and that I may get not a taxi in Rivas (probably for no reason) or some of the other passengers will be stucked at customs. It took as again a while to get away from the border (the same scene, both directions wanting to go through a one lane road simoultanesly) and finally we got checked by the police. The bus passed while we waited to be checked. the check itself was a joke, just my passport and that was it. After a muchas gracias we continued and arrived at about ten in San Juan del Sur, I got a bed in a Hostel and went to bed, but not befor having a short talk to other travellers whichwent over the boarder the day before. It took them nine (!) hours, but they went with local busses till the end of the pedestrian queu (which was more than a kilometre) took a taxi between the two control points (about 2 km). So it paid of to take the Ticabus all the way from san Jose which was ca 20 USD (local busses would be probably the half or even less).

Today I had to solve a Money crisis. In all 5 ATMs in Town I (and so did all others I met) didn´t got money. In the afternoon I was lucky to get money with my savings account (where I can make 4 free withdrawls a year at any ATM worldwide). This account wors with the VISA system and that probably worked, because the two guys before me were unlucky with their maestro cards.

Im still not sure what to do for the next days. Today I took a shuttle to one of the beaches (Madera) which was nice but very small waves (but that´s due to the lacking swell, not the fault of the beach). There is a nice place to stay one beach further (Playa Majagual), but it has no restaurant and you are stucked at that beach. If I stay in San Juan del Sur I have the facilities of small but developed town with plenty of sodas (foodstands), restaurants, banks (if the ATM wors – they all take no traveller checks) and there are boat shuttles to all the beaches. The downturn is the price of the shuttles, but mor the lack of a surfbeach in town, so you always have to book a shuttle (taxi or watertaxi) and they leave not before nine. At least you don´t have to worry the wind may turn, since it has 300 days a year offshore winds, due to the big lake nicaragua.

If you don´t hear from me the next days I am probably at Playa Mjagual. So for that case I wish a merry christmasand a happy new year.

PS @Tobi: Anmelden und Schreuiben klappt auch auf dem recht alten Rechner hier wunderbar. Fotos muss ich noch ausprobieren, denn bloederweise klappt der Upload auf imageshack hier nicht. Aber es gibt noch einige Internet Cafes hier.

Kategorie: Costa Rica, Mittelamerika, Nicaragua | Kommentare deaktiviert für San Juan del Sur

The memory of a great night

21. Dezember 2008 von Roga

Yesterday I had a brilliant night. It started at about 2 o´clock in the afternoon, when I came back to the hostel from surfing. The drinkmates from the night before already opened th first beers, but I could withstand but justed relaxed. This was proofed to be a wise decision. At about 5 ´clock a joined the drinking circus and played drinking c ard games (everybody picks a card turn by turn and the card basically decides who has to drink). At 8 o´clock a life band played cover songs. Just before I managed to get some food which was again a 3* Menu and that in a hostel (which meant budget prices). I choosed the Marlin with mashed potatoes in light sauce. The Marlin was fresh, the mashed potatoes homemade and the sauce just delicious with grat and strong flavours (of which I only can name Rosemary).
So I when I finished the plate,m the band started and since many had already forglued (I don¨t know if you say so in english, but whatr I wanna say that most were already at party alcohol level). So it was already a good party when the owner of the place came in and ordered for himself a giant margaritha (which was about a liter in a giant cocktail glas). All others got free shoots directly in the mouth and some orderd also giant drinks. I stayed strictly at beer and that seemed to pay off today. Further details are more or less roumors, because I can¨t exactly remember. What I can was dancing with the prettiest girl (that is not a roumor but was testified by many (sucessless) others) in the bar to sublimes What I got and it was really close. Ok I remember a bit more, but that is nothing I have to describe here in detail.
The morning was surprisingly easy – no headaches, no hangover, but a morning surf with just one other guy. The waves were kind of heavy and you had to be really quick (what I wasn´t most of the time). Although I surfed the first time with the shortboard and had som adjustment issues.
After the surf I packed and watched the massacre of the party with lots of Hangovers and still strange articulation (believe me, normally this person can speak english but in the morning it was finglish, which I didn´t understood.

The drve back to san Jose was great. I took the scenic route over the hillsides which seemed to be we backbone of costa rica aggriculture with coffee, sugarcane and fruits. In Carthago I stopped to see a beautiful church, which featured a colonial style with all white walls and low roof and more mosque style towers.

Tomorrow I have to drop off my rental car and then take the bus to Nicaragua. The car was a small 4WD Daihatsu Terios. Normally I hate SUVs, but for these bad roads to made sense, since the roads are all over with potholes and a solid car pays off.

And as aspecial for Kris, but not limited to Kris here they are the first pics:

More pics at: Imageshack

Kategorie: Costa Rica, Mittelamerika | 5 Kommentare »

Caribean surf & nights

18. Dezember 2008 von Roga

Since three days I enjoy the caribean side of costa rica. The Journey took a bit longer than expected, since I got suck in the traffic and it took me 10 hours to drive (and a ferry ride) for max. 200km. But we had good entertainment on board of the ferry and everybody was relaxed although we had to wait long for the montezuma – san jose bus (which justed came across on its way to montezuma when I arrived at the ferry terminal. The first ferry was fully completed so I had to wait for about three hours. The highway (which ist just a windy countryside road by german perspective) was packag either, so I couldn“t make it to the bus terminal in time to book my busride to nicaragua. so I stayed a night in san jose and was lucky since the staff at the casa yose hostel had their christmas party and so we all had a good time with rum cola, beers, music and dancing. After about two hours of tough partying the car in the most futyherst in the driveway had to leave, so it was time for the „operacion sequenciell“, which meant eight cars moving out and back again. Some drivers couldn“t barely stand, but everything went fine and also my car got a space on the drivewaywhich made me more relaxed since it was a no parking area in front and the lonely planet said a care parked in no parking area will be towed quickly. But at night, its probably a bit different and no other than me cared aboput at all (I guess that is my german influence).

The next day I got my ticket to nicaragua for the 21th of december, so I’ll spend christmas in nica. The drive to the carebean was nice and without complications, but it takes its time (4 hours). I stopped at Cahuita, which is a nice small caribean tourist town with lot’s of Rasta attitude, but also a strong swiss/german note, since many guesthouses are owned by swiss or germans. This annoyed me a bit, does this also attracts some typical german tourists just argue about everything which is a bit different to therir home country. The surf was ok. There is a nice black sanded beach, but the waves were not really peaking but felt down when they just came to you (everyone ever surfed the netherlands will know what I mean). Once you got a wave it was not tht good as in the pacific, since there was not much soulder to surf on. But anyway at least it wasn’t crowded (most of the time I was just by myself). I stayed two nights in Cahuita and now I am in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca. Beside also a tourist town with a different spirit. Here it is the waves which attracts lots of surfers (in Cahuita there is a national park  just beside the town). So the spirit is younger but also with more american influence. I stay at Rocking J which is a big hostel with it is own spirit. You can choose between dorms, indoor hammocks or indoor camping (which I choosed). Idoor makes sense, till it rains a lot in the caribean and even now in dry season we had rain everyday.

The hostel is good partying spot and they have good food ( I enjoyed a very flavourous asian style stir fried rice). But the best I had so far was the salad with fresh tuna in the „Caribean Flavour“ in Cahuita. It was a bit warm due to the grilled tuna and the sauce which was different to what I ever had tasted but really good.

Since I forgot my boardshort and lycra on the washing line at the cabina in Cahuita, I“ll go back today and will also surf the playa negra in cahuita and eat there. Then I“ll go back to puerto viejo and maybe gooing to manzanilla tomorrow. Unfortenately the waves here in puerto viejo are small at salsa brava (but that is not my problem, since it is a gnarly wave and to high for my surfing skills). Playa Cocles was this morning mushy and with no real Paeks and once you got a wave it closed out.

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Kategorie: Costa Rica, Mittelamerika | 6 Kommentare »

Tropical Lifestyle in Playa Hermosa

12. Dezember 2008 von Roga

Seit 5 Tagen bin ich in Playa Hermosa (dem auf der Nicoya Peninsula in der Naehe von Mal Pais / St. Theresa. Dort ist es recht ruhig, so besteht der tag aus surfen, chillen auif der schoenen Veranda mit Blick in den tropischen garten und auf das Meer. Es ist einfach traumhaft und ohne Mobilfunkempfang. Von daher erhole ich mich praechtig. Das Internet hier ist so langsam und instabil, dass ich hier keine Versuche mit Photos machen moechte (vielmehr ist dies bereits der dritte Versuch ueberhaupt was zu schreiben). Ich schmiede gerade Plaene fuer die weitere Reise:

Hier einen Mietwagen buchen und mit Abstecher auf einen der Vulkane auf die Caribicseite nach puerto Viejo. Dort wuerde ich ein paart Tage bleiben und dann zurueck nach san Jose und dort den Mietwagen abgeben. Dann mit dem Expressbus nach Nicaragua und dort in der Naehe von San Juan del Sur fuer die Santa Semata vorausbuchen, da es sonst etwas kritisch mit ner Unterkunft werden koennte. Von da aus gibt es die Moeglicvhkeit mit nem Boot sonst nicht erreichbare Spots zu surfen. Was ich danach mache, ob weiter die Kueste in Nicaragua hoch oder zurueck auf die Nicoya Halinsel ( dann aber den noerdlichen teil suedlich von Tamarindo) oder in den Sueden nach Dominical und Pavones entscheide ich nach den Forecasts.

Viele Liebe Gruesse und Stoke wunscht Euch

Roga

Kategorie: Costa Rica, Mittelamerika | 1 Kommentar »

First Imperial

7. Dezember 2008 von Roga

So this is my first blog from Costa Rica. I’m sitting in the Pagea hostel in San Jose and use the free Internet. The Journey went fint, but nevertheless I’m exhausted. Just two hours sleep the night before, due to last minute work that hast to be done, packing and the nervousity of thinking you’ve forgot something. And I do forget the international driving licence. Since I wnated to have the opportunity to rent a car this might caiuse some trouble.

The Journey itself was as planned. Immigration in Nwark took its time so the 3 1/2 hours I had for changing planes were not too much. A Drink at the Bar and back in in a plane. That was the time it got streneous. Not enough space to sleep relaxed, so glad I had my Ipod for Entertainment.

The local beer is called Imperial, and it tastes „sueffig“, which means you can drink it fast but has good flavour.

 

Tomorrow I wanna take the bus to Mal Pais, were I should get a Pickup from the surfcamp I’ve booked for the first week. I just decided to want relax cpmpletely and have a full service befor starting travelling along the country.

I hope I get a surf tomorrow, but the swell looks pretty small on the forecast.

Cheers

Roga

Kategorie: Uncategorized | Kommentare deaktiviert für First Imperial

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