2 Days in San Jose (is enough)

Almost every guide/blog/vlog I’d looked up about Costa Rica all said the same thing: skip San Jose.

But I had 2 free days prior to my tour starting due to flights and tour dates not lining up, so I wasn’t about to leave and come back. Plus, I preferred to explore and make my own mind up about it.

I was fascinated by the sheer number of people sitting around setting these weird little pieces of paper. Turns out it’s some kind of lottery. Maybe for Christmas or maybe that’s the way they do it there. But seriously, how could this be anything other than 100% scam and profit for all of these randos standing on the corner?

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2 legit 2 quit

The central market was insanely busy. My tour guide (I did a food & art walking tour) said it was because everyone was rushing to get supplies to make tamales for Christmas. I did not purchase a tamale, but I did get something wrapped in a banana leaf. Tortilla with gallo pinto and a big ol’ slab of cheese on top. Hot damn was it ugly, but sooo tasty.

Just outside the market I had a near-miss with an avocado. A couple of street vendors, one of whom was quite pregnant, got into a fight with “putas” and produce a-flying. It felt like an authentic San Jose experience.

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I love guacamole, but…

En Route to Costa Rica

Edmonton to Vancouver; Vancouver to Toronto; Toronto to San Jose. I should have known better than to schedule a flight that had 2 connections. But hey, cheap is cheap.

By the time I made it out into the muggy Costa Rican night, I was almost delirious with exhaustion and frustration. I picked the first guy that said ‘Taxi!’ and was on my way.

The travel blogs you read about airport taxi guys who will scam you are correct. The driver said something about traffic and just drifted nonchalantly onto an off-ramp. Oh, Google Maps says we’re going the opposite direction and you’re tagging on an extra 20km to the trip? Sure. The newby traveler in me doesn’t know better and the Canadian in me feels like it’s rude to haggle, so…

The hotel website said they closed at midnight, so all I cared about was this guy getting me there on time.  I arrived at 11:59 and gave the driver a $10 tip on top of his scammy fare. That’ll show him….