Central San Jose

Trip Start Apr 04, 2009
Trip End Apr 14, 2009

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Flag of Costa Rica  , Province of San Jose,
Sunday, April 5, 2009

We spent the afternoon out exploring the surrounding area by foot.  We are in central San Jose which is a stark contrast to Vancouver.   It is beautiful, very hot, but very poor.  Fast food restaurants are every where in the area, but there are a number of plaza parks where large trees provide shade from the heat.

We walked from the hotel over to the Museo Nationale to learn a bit about the history of the Costa Rica.  We initially found the back side of the museaum which was gated so we thought it was closed.  As it turned out, the other side was indeed open.  We explored the circumfrence of the city block and eventually made our way in.  There were exihibits of gold, and some naturual history about the development of Costa Rica.  We attempted to see the butterfly garden but were unable to locate the access and everyone we spoke to seemed to be unaware of it even though we could see it below and they had signs informing people of it.  We will have plenty of opportunity to see other butterfly gardens, so no worries.
We have been consuming a lot of water and stripping off layers of clothing as the day went on.  The sidewalks (and I use that term loosely), are extremely hazardous.  There are man hole covers every few feet that look precariously balanced.  We tried to walk around them, but I envisioned falling to our deaths in to the abyss.  Still alive so far.

We had a nice authentic Costa Rican lunch at a little place called Neuvos Tierra.  We had a nice salad and a chicken dish that included fried plantains, mashed beans, salsa, tortilla, and grilled vegetables.  I noted that they don't have Diet Coke here.  They call it Coke Light.  Never know what you may find odd...

We had a leisurely walk back through the "less desirable" streets.  Personal safety is not a major concern here, but with all the tall gates and roll top shutter doors, it is apparent that property crime is a bit too common.  You won't find a single door or window in this neighborhood without bars or a roll down shutter.

We have our Caravan meeting at 6pm tonight to introduce us to the group and have some dinner afterwards.  Enjoy the photos.

UPDATE:  We had a 6pm meeting with the Caravan tour group and it appears to be a real mix of ages.  There are a handful of kids as young as 6, and some seniors in the mix.  There is one group of grand parents travelling with their kids and grand kids.  One other Mom is here with her daughter and there are a few couples.  Most of the kids are on Spring Break.  We had a quick buffet dinner of sea bass or chicken with veggies and salad.

It appears the sun is much stronger than we realized.  My face is tan already.  I didn't even think of putting on sun tan lotion and we barely spent any time in direct sun today.  Mental note for tomorrow is that sun tan lotion goes on immediately after breakfast.  We are on a bus by 7:30am tomorrow heading to the Poas Volcano which is one of the most spectacular in Costa Rica.

We leave San Jose on Tuesday morning so I don't know when our next entry will be.  From what I understand Tortuguerro is probably not going to have Wifi in the lodge room.  We will write when we can.
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