Monday, March 2
Today, sadly, was our last full day in Costa Rica. We had two exciting tours planned for today. While waiting for the restaurant to open we walked around and took a few pictures.
We started the day with breakfast at TuleCafe. This morning we tried a different egg dish – it was very good but the breakfast the day before was still our favourite.
Shortly after breakfast we walked up to the main office for our first tour of the day – The Sloth Walk. We met our guide upstairs at the Sloth Institute and she led us through the property pointing out the sloths and other wildlife as she spotted them. The first sloth she found was a mother and baby.
The Mexican Hairy Porcupine is nocturnal and arboreal but he was awake and yawning when we took his picture. They have prehensile tails unlike the porcupines here in Canada, which makes it easier for them to move around in the trees.
We enjoyed walking around the grounds with a small group of other hotel guests and our guide. You must be a guest of Tulemar to participate in this tour. We saw a few more sloths and several monkeys. Unfortunately we had to call for a van to take us to the office before the tour ended. We were headed for an adventurous waterfall tour next.
We booked this tour with our concierge before we left home. (http://tulemarresort.com) This waterfall tour was a contrast to the tour we did in Drake Bay. There was a fairly big group of us and we were ushered onto a very fancy bus. We also had 5 guides that kept us entertained and made sure all our activities were done safely. We really liked the guides and they seemed to genuinely enjoy their job.
Our first stop was at the smallest waterfall. We all took turns jumping. This jump was about 3 meters high and took place from a small rock cliff.
“You can’t make me!” ” Oh, alright!”
The next stop had a bigger jump – about 5 meters. There was a wooden path and stairs leading to the area we would jump from. On my first jump I had a lot of water rush into my sinuses so I tried plugging my nose for the second jump. I hit the water with such force that it knocked my hand away from my nose, so that didn’t work. On our way out we had the option of jumping a third and forth time and we did. Before getting back in the bus we had a nice snack of fresh pineapple and watermelon.
Our next stop was a unique waterfall. The rock is smooth at the top so you can slide down it like a waterslide. The guides were there to help get us set up properly to slide down safely. One of the guides offered to take our watches just in case they got knocked off. This was also the reason we weren’t able to take pictures on this tour. There was no where safe to carry a phone or camera during all the jumps. It was great that they had a photographer there who only charged a small amount for our pictures.
A young boy had an action cam in his hand and they warned him and his dad that he would probably drop it and they wouldn’t be able to retrieve it. He took the chance and sure enough, he lost it. We were told later that someone was able to dive in and found it for him.
I had a bit of a surprise on my way down – the slide part ended about half way down and then it was a free fall into the water. The drop on this one was about 5 meters. There was also the option of jumping from a higher point for a jump of about 7 meters but I chose not too. Only a few people did it. Three of the guides helped get them into the right spot and then they had to jump way out to make sure they didn’t hit any rocks on the way down. (The jumping off spot was to the right of the waterfall on the highest part of the rock that you can see in the above photo.)
Our final waterfall stop was a smaller but different kind of jump. First we were told to lie on our back with our feet towards the waterfall opening while holding a rope they had put in place. Then we had to pull ourselves against the current until we were behind the waterfall. Once there, two guides helped us crawl up onto a large rock. From there we had to leap forward through the waterfall.
While I was waiting for Mike to finish his turn I had a mud facial. When we were done here we headed across the small dirt road to have some lunch which was included with the tour.
To finish off our tour, we got back in our air-conditioned bus and headed over to Ventanas beach to check out the caves and play in the ocean. This was our third visit to this beach!
The tide was out so we were able to go quite far into the cave and play in the waves. This was a much calmer activity so I was able to carry my waterproof phone and get some pictures of my own.
Some of our guides enjoying themselves!
The tour photographer also got some candid pictures of Mike and I.
On our drive back to Tulemar one of the guides made souvenirs from some fronds. They asked us some trivia questions related to what they had told us over the course of the day. I answered two of them correctly so I got a fish and one other design. I passed the second one to the family sitting behind us.
After a long day outside we were looking forward to our dinner at TuleCafe. Tonight we enjoyed our dinner while watching the beautiful sunset.
After dinner we sadly headed back to our room to pack for the flight home the next day.
Costa Rica 2020, Day 15
Our flight home didn’t depart until 2 p.m. so we were able to have a leisurely breakfast. With the remaining time, we went for a walk to enjoy the wildlife one last time.
During this walk Mike and I both spotted a Sloth on our own for the first time. We also saw a few Monkeys as well as a Banded Owl Butterfly. This butterfly is about 8 cm wide and the theory is that the circle resembles an owl’s eye and therefore scares away predators.
We met our driver in the front lobby and headed off towards the airport. It was a new driver for us again. He overheard us saying that we hadn’t seen any crocodiles so he offered to stop at the Tarcoles river bridge.
We also made a quick stop at a souvenir store. I was a bit surprised to hear my name when I went through the door- our favourite driver was there and recognized me when I walked in! I was happy to buy a couple of T-shirts for myself as I hadn’t had the opportunity to get anything for myself so far on the trip.
We then headed to the airport. We checked out the gift shop but everything was very expensive so we didn’t buy anything. Our Air Canada flight was on time and we had a safe trip back to snowy Ottawa, ON.
Fun Fact: We will be back!