After several lovely stops throughout Costa Rica,
seeing all types of creatures,
spending too much money (their currency is strikingly beautiful, which is a good thing because you are going to need a lot of it),
and with the rainy season starting in earnest,
we ready ourselves for our final stop in the country: the town of Golfito, which is not known for its, shall we say, hospitality. Countless tales of crime from fellow cruisers and locals left us less than excited about going there, but it was necessary, as it is the last port where you can check out of the country.
This once thriving town has fallen on hard times since the departure of the United Fruit Company and now depends mainly on a duty-free zone and robbing cruisers (just kidding…I think). Don’t get me wrong I wouldn’t pick it over a trip to Maui, but for our fellow cruisers you’ll most likely have to be here and it was not as awful as we were led to expect. The bay is well protected and even with the biblical rains we experienced it was always calm. And clearing out of the country is easy and only costs $20.
We moored at Land Sea where the owners, ex-cruisers Tim and Katie, and their many pups provided a safe haven and welcomed us, including Lucy. Land Sea has a few moorings and a wonderfully funky cruiser’s lounge. For our land-based friends, let me explain what cruisers want in life; good weather, cheap beer, clean laundry, easy land access and free reliable wi-fi. And we got 4 out of 5 of those things at Land Sea. The rain was by the buckets everyday.
Tim regaled us with wild stories from the many years he has lived in Golfito and recommended local restaurants and field trips to fill up the week we were there.
One of our best field trips was to Casa Orquideas, only 5nm but a whole world away from Golfito. These are meticulously maintained gardens owned by an American couple, Ron and Trudy, who have lived here for almost 40 years.
Trudy is the sweet woman who gave us a botanical education, taught us how to open a coconut, and sent us off with many of her home grown fruits and herbs.
We were just going to go over to this bay for the afternoon, but ended up staying 2 days. It was a delightfully tranquil spot perfect for kayaking, swimming and dreaming of our next stop – Panama.