We survived!

Trip Start May 07, 2010
Trip End May 16, 2010

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Where I stayed
Hotel Las Colinas Boutique

Flag of Costa Rica  , Province of Guanacaste,
Saturday, May 8, 2010

La Fortuna is the gateway to all activities in and around Volcan Arenal (the Arenal Volcano).  It is basically a one road town, with restaurants and hotels lining each side of the main street.  Activities in the area includes kayaking, white water rafting, hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking, and tours through ecological reserves.  Basically, anything you can think of regarding adventure travel can be done in this area.  Hell, the whole country is basically like this, but La Fortuna is one of the hot spots to do so.  In addition, checking out Volcan Arenal (an active volcano) spew out molten lava and bellow smoke is one of the top 3 things to do in Costa Rica.

We stayed at the Hotel Las Colinas Boutique.  A small hotel of sorts just off the main drag.  It was rated highly on Tripadvisor.com so we gave it a shot.  Sort of discrete on the outside, the rooms were rather plush as compared to budget hostels.  Amenities included a large shared patio, a private balcony overlooking the main road, 2 queen size beds, A/C, portable fridge, and a very helpful staff.  At $60/night it was one of the more expensive stays in our trip, but definitely worth it. 

After getting settled, Rowena and I hit the town, first visiting the cathedral and park just across the street.  We replenished our supply of water (beer for me hehehe) and snacks from the supermarket and went back to the hotel to arrange a kayaking/hiking/hot springs tour(s) for the next day.  Note, all of those activities I listed were all crammed into a single day!  More about that later...

As the afternoon melted into the evening, we grabbed a bite to eat from the street vendor across the street, then wallowed across the park to the La Cascada restaurant to grab some beers and ceviche.  As the evening wore on, we decided to go back to our hotel and relax on our private balcony with a bit more of the Devil's water we bought from the supermarket (beer for me, some sort of wine coolerish thing for Rowena). 

I'm telling you, that part of the evening was one of the more peaceful moments in our trip.  Below us, the supermarket was playing 80s music all night, with REM's "Losing My Religion" providing awesome immediate ambiance as soon as I opened the balcony door and as I literally parked my butt in the corner... "that's me in the corner, me in the spotlight, losing my religion"...  a few minutes later, it was Rick Astley's "Never Gonna Give You Up".  Following that was a bit of Culture Club!  Just to the left of the balcony was Volcan Arenal looming over the town.  Such a wonderful piece of time.  Rowena and I sat there for quite some time just enjoying the evening, the music, God's wonderful world, and the life He/She breathed into us.

As a night cap, we headed over to one of the more livelier bars in La Fortuna, The Lava Lounge.  At about 9:45PM, we were back in bed, red as turnips, filled with joy, and turned out the lights.  Yes...  call us hardcore party animals! LOL  In our defense, I did have a crap load of beer.
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