We were so fortunate to be able to visit with friends the day before our departure. It was bitter sweet realizing you had made some great friends but have to part with them.
The home owners arrived on time so we had time to pass on info and say good bye to Omber.
The owners from our house sit were gracious enough to give us a lift to Quepos to catch our bus. We still have a ridiculous amount of luggage even though I have managed to get rid of 53lbs since we started our Central American journey. I still weighed in with a total of 149lbs of luggage.
The bus trip from Quepos to San Jose was as good as it gets. It left on time, we managed to get seat 1 and 2 which means no one is reclining their chair into you, which is very nice for us taller folks. We had an excellent driver who was both fast and courteous. When you factor in the 3 hour and 10 minute trip only cost 9000 colones (18.00US) for the two of us, it was phenomenal.
We arrived in San Jose at rush hour which made for great entertainment from our front row seats. I have to say I was glad I was not behind the wheel. I am sure there is some collusion between the bus companies and the taxis as it seems the bus terminals in San Jose are all located at the opposite side of the city from the airport. On our last trip here the taxi fare was approximately $30US, this time we got in an unofficial, non metered taxi that cost us $40US. The hotel was about 500 metres further away but what made me ok with the price was the level of customer service we got from this fellow. Like I said, we have a lot of luggage. He helped carry it to the taxi but also on arrival at the hotel rushed inside to get a trolley and loaded all our bags and took it inside for us.
I have to put a plug in for the City Express Hotel. It was perfect for the one night stopover that occurs for most people when they fly out of San Jose. It is very close to the airport, the staff are super helpful, rooms clean, and even though the included breakfast does not start until 6AM they made an effort to have some basics out at 3:30AM for those of us leaving early. The free airport shuttle left on time and once again with a great driver.
We treated ourselves to an immense burger and delicious Costa Rican artisan micro brewery beer at a local pub, it was the perfect way to round off the day.
As we approached the airport in the morning we were nervous. There were a couple of reasons for this. When you travel to Costa Rica you get a 3 month visa when you enter the country. We were 5 weeks past the expiration of our visa and were unsure what the penalties were going to be for this. As well, between Karen and I each of our 4 checked bags was 10lbs over weight and my carry on luggage itself was 40lbs overweight.
Well, once again, we breezed through. No one said a word about our overweight luggage and the security glanced at our passports and waved us through. No problems whatsoever. I am sure it must be all that good living finally paying off.
The flight from San Jose to San Salvador was flawless and they even served a simple snack to tide us over. I have to say, I like traveling when it goes like this.
Ok, at the San Salvador airport bad luck finally struck. We only had 25 minutes to make our connecting flight so we didn’t have time to purchase supplies at the duty free shop. Oh well into every life a bit of rain must fall. Still a flawless connection though.
When we took off for our 50 minute flight from San Salvador to Belize City on Avianca we encountered another delightful surprise. They served a small hot snack to everyone as well as your choice of beverage. I have to admit, anytime is the right time for a rum and coke, even 9:00AM. If you are ever traveling in Central America, I cannot recommend Avianca enough. Great staff, great service, and clean planes.
When we arrived in Belize City it just got better. The duty free shop in arrivals was open and they were super helpful in making sure we purchased the right sized bottles to exactly fill the limit of 4.5 liters per person limit. The custom guys were great as well and we had a pleasant chat with them before they waved us through.
An uneventful $25US taxi ride to the water taxi terminal and we were ready to head to Ambergris Caye. We had a delicious lunch at the terminal and were able to get seats up on top of the water taxi. Very windy but I enjoy it because it helps me deal with any seasickness issues that may arise.
Once we arrived on the island a taxi took us to our condo and we were set. I have to share that at the end of a days travel, no matter how well it goes, it is wonderful to arrive at a beautiful, clean, and comfortable abode. Thank you to our friends for that, it was the perfect end to a great day.
San Pedro……we’re hereeeeee!