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Trip Report Ojochal and Dominical: Costa Rica 2012

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Just returned from a fantastic 8 night trip to the land of pura vida,and except for a family emergency that brought us home early(all is ok) the trip was a blast.After landing we went to tricolor to pick up what I called my" little sewing machine truck", a brand new Bego. I was a little concerned about it being able to handle some of the steep inclines where we were staying, but it turned out to be quite a climber and we were soon on the new hwy 27 and headed to the coast.

Just south of Jaco at Hermosa beach we had our first wildlife spotting, a group of about 8 Scarlet Macaws that were hanging out in some trees on the bluff overlooking the pacific.We pulled off, had a quick bite to eat and enjoyed the wonderful scenery. There was some interesting courtship behavior going on and got some pics. of them, mostly upside down, doing their " thang".As it was already about 2:30 pm we couldn't stay long and continued our trek to our first stop, Ojochal and Villas Gaia, our hotel for 3 nights. We checked in and were sad to find out that you could no longer hike the trails through the mangove forest and down to the beach which was one of the reasons we stayed here again- apparently they had a dispute with the land owner and he put up a fence- bummer!

After check in we headed to dinner at Mirador Los Mangalares a tican owned place several miles south of Ojochal where we had ceviche, beef filet with mushrooms and the largest whole fried red snapper you have ever seen! All was good and I discovered my new favorite CR beer - Rock Ice.The ceviche was the "mixto" with fish and Piangua clam- wow it was great especially the clam- try it sometime.

For our first day we started off with a early am birding tour with Giovanni, a local guide who lives in Ojochal.He led us through some of the few remaining trails you can hike on. Lots of birds were to be found in the fruiting trees around the lodge as well as a large group of Capuchins that kept us entertained as they passed, the end being followed up by a battle scarred old male who acted like he wanted a piece of us before he too passed. After the tour we kicked back around the pool for a while and made reservations at Exotica for dinner.

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