Departing Ricardoīs house early Friday morning,we had to ride east to west across the entire city. one hour later we finally passed the International Airport. Traffic was frantic. I am still getting accustomed to Latin drivers. The only traffic rule in Latin America is that there are no rules.
Suddenly we were on the road that would take us into the mountains to our destination town of La Fortuna. This beautiful city sits right at the base of Volcan Arenal, the only active vilcano in Costa Rica.
With little traffic, we wound our way over beautiful hills, over rivers and bustling streams, past coffee and pineapple farms and numerous cattle farms. Then suddenly we were in Zarcero, a town famous for the amazing topiary park right in the center of the town. Topiary more delicate and beautiful than any that I have ever seen.
Then off again towards Arenal, but first we must stop along the river in Muelle to see the magnificent Iguanas that live in the river bank. Ten, maybe 20 or 30. large, some a meter or more in length. And guess what! They would come right up and eat out of your hand (maybe even bite your hand).
Back on our bikes, we were off heading to La Fortuna. And suddenly we were there, in one of the nicest tourist destinations in Costa Rice. Searching for a hotel, Ricardo led the way 16 kms north to Tacotal Ecohotel where we booked a beautiful room, all glass front, looking right up at Arenal. But the clouds were heavy and the weather misty. Not to be deterred, we paid a visit to La Fortuna and enjoyed a typical Tico meal and then were off to bed early.
Sleeping a bit late, we departed the hotel about 10:00 AM headed towards the beautiful Lago Arenal. A lake high in the nountains with a beautiful winding road going around it. Then in the early afternoon we found our way to Tilaran, a town more magnificent than I could imagine. A three hour stop to watch Tico children dance to native Tico music. This weekend is the 2011 Telefon, A time that Costa Ricans stop to raise money for the benefit of childrenīs health. What a great idea!
Then finally riding into Liberia, the city where my father once lived and near where he died at such a young age. A rustic hotel, at a reasonable price, but no hot water. Ricardo picked this one but tomorrow, I will select the hotel and hopefully we will have hot water.
And tomorrow we are off to the border where we will enter Nicaragua headed to the striking colonial city of Granada. I hope Daniel is keeping dinner for us.