Pura Vida

It certainly is the pure life in Nosara, Costa Rica.

After a 4 a.m. wake up call, flight from Dallas to Fort Lauderdale, meeting up with Brittany, flying to San Jose after an hour delay while sitting on the runway, finally meeting my Aunt and cousin in San Jose, then driving about 4 hours to meet Cameron and Paul in Nicoya at a fried chicken restaurant, then continuing to drive for another hour and a half to Nosara. If that wasn’t clear enough, it was a really long day of travelling.

Once we made it to Nosara, we visited with my Aunt, Uncle, and cousins before going to dinner and relaxing. There are plenty of restaurants in Nosara, most selling fresh seafood, pizza, or a casado plate which is the national dish of Costa Rica. Its simple components are rice, beans, a small salad, fried plaintains, and a meat of your choice. I top my rice with Lizano, a green sauce that is tangy, salty, and a little spicy. And clearly, pizza can be found in any country, each with a unique twist.

Fresh gnar-gnar

Nosara was a hidden surfer’s paradise in Costa Rica for years. It isn’t as hidden any more as numerous ex-pats have settled in over the years making Nosara a little more of a tourist trap over the years. Still, it retains a charm of an underdeveloped, simple town. Perhaps that is the reason so many people want to call it home. Hotels are sparse as most visitors stay in smaller types of rentals, condos, and houses.

Cameron, Brittany, Paul and I are staying in a 2 bed 2 bath condo with a small mini-kitchen. Its comfortable and we fall asleep to the sounds of birds, frogs, and howler monkeys. Aside from the fact that howler monkeys are the 2nd loudest animal on earth, next to some sort of whale, there isn’t much to complain about.

Our first full day, we got acclimated, went to the grocery store and loaded up on Costa Rican goodies like good coffee, chocolate, mangos, and bananas. My aunt took us on a drive through central Nosara and through its three beaches, Playa Garza, Playa Guiones, and Playa Pelada. It was a good drive in terms of Costa Rican “good drives. My aunt had rented a car to pick us up from the airport so we had air conditioner which meant the windows could stay closed and we could avoid eating dust and the car had great shocks so none of us bumped our heads on the ceiling on the unpaved roads, but, still, we all clung desperately to the handles.

After I enjoyed an excellent yoga class on the first day at the Yoga House, located about 200 feet from our condo, we tried to go for a surf lesson, but, because we are in the jungle during rainy season, our first attempt at a surf lesson was rained out. To catch low tide the next morning, it required a 6:00 am wake-up call. Hopefully, that will be the last time I set my alarm on “vacation.” But sun, comfortable temperatures, and beautiful, white, foamy waves to practice on made the wake-up worth it.

Nosara Yoga Institute

After a chorizo and egg taco homemade breakfast, we marched up to the Nosara Yoga Institute for a yoga class in an open-air studio, overlooking the canopy of the jungle. After more surfing practice we rounded out the day as most in Nosara do: sitting on the beach, drink in hand, watching sunset.

Image

Sunset over Playa Guiones

It is still my favorite thing about Nosara. The town stops for sunset. Children play in the sand, dogs leap through the waves, and everyone just sits, enjoying the slowness, stillness, and beauty of the sun falling below the horizon.

Pura Vida.

-Kelsi

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