Together with the Dutch woman that I had met in Tortuguero I moved on to Puerto Viejo, a small relaxed town on the Atlantic coast near Panama. First we had problems to find our accommodation because it was already dark, but somehow we found it. It was a kind of boarding school. That probably explained the strange arrangement of the rooms, which mostly consisted of only 2 beds. I only stayed there one night anyway. The next day I moved to a better hostel.

The city Puerto Viejo is known for its Caribbean flair. Quite a few people smoke pot here.

A shitting sloth in Cahuita National Park

Additionally there is the Cahuita National Park nearby, where you can pay as much entrance fee as you want. Right on the first meters of the way I witnessed a spectacle that only few people get to see in their lives: a shitting sloth.

Only about once a month a sloth comes to the ground to shit. This is also the time when most of these animals die, because on the ground they are exposed to their enemies helplessly. The slow animals are better protected at the top of the tree tops. After defecation, the animal retreats in all comfort just up there again.

I walked further through this national park directly on the beach and saw how a guide pointed out a highly poisonous yellow snake. I also met many spiders and crabs in this national park. I already liked this national park better than the Monteverde National Park for which I had to pay too much money.  And I also saw an animal on a palm tree that I thought was a monkey at first, but it looked like me haha.

The beaches in this national park were enchanting. You could even swim in them and the water was almost as warm as in a hot tub.

After I had finished the walk through the park, I and some others waited for the bus for ages. We also tried to get a hitchhiking ride. But nobody stopped. After a lot of delay the bus finally came.

Leaving Costa Rica & summary of my stay

In my hostel I asked how to get from here to Panama the next day. The owner tried to talk me into an expensive shuttle, but I knew about the cheaper local buses - and I took them - and saved some extra money.

Overall I liked Costa Rica less than the three countries I visited before (El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua). You have to spend more money, but usually you get the same or even less than in the other countries. I found the other countries more adventurous and interesting. Costa Rica was already too much overcrowded by normal tourists from the USA or Western Europe, which was perhaps also due to the fact that there were summer holidays. This also led to the fact that I often had to book transport and accommodation in advance, otherwise everything would have been fully booked. This also constrained me more than in the other countries.

Feb. 13, 2020, 10:07 a.m.