Yesterday our plan was to bike around Tamarindo and visit Playa Grande. We managed to get a good deal on two bikes for a half day rental from a shop just down the street from us. After two failed bikes, we were set up and on our way down to the beach.
We had a few errands to run before we could get on with our day – yes, you run errands on vacation. Tomorrow we will be heading to Mal Pais which is a small surfing community about four hours from here. Unlike everywhere else in Central America shuttles are outrageously expensive. From Tamarindo to Mal Pais (4 hours) they charge $45.00 USD/person. When compared a shuttle in Guatemala from Flores to Semuc Champay (10 hours) where we paid less than $10.00 USD/person we just couldn’t stomach it. After looking into public transit we realized a 4 hour drive would take 10 hours on a public bus. Getting to my point, errand number one was to rent a car in Tamarindo and drop it off in Mal Pais. The rental is costing us $100.00, but we are going to make a day trip of it. Driving along the coast and stopping at a couple beaches along the way is far better value for our money. Being behind the wheel is an added bonus.
Afterwards we headed back to the beach and caught a lanchas across the river with our bikes. It was literally a one minute boat ride, but the river is really deep in the center making it hard to cross with bikes. Further up the river there are a number of crocodiles, so I wasn’t willing to risk that one of them wandered down to the boat crossing. No way, no how! As soon as the boat pulled away we realized how inconvenient it was to have bikes on a sandy beach. It was such an effort to push them, so much so we didn’t feel the need to walk the extra kilometer to the more public area of Playa Grande. Instead we set up camp on a private stretch of beach, tore our clothes off and ran for the water. For awhile it was really nice having the beach to ourselves, it was really peaceful. But then something mysterious flew by and stung Pawel’s hand. He took it like a champ, but I could tell how much pain he was in. We decided to head back because there was no way we would be able to relax knowing it might strike again.
The rest of the afternoon we spent at Playa Tamarindo, sting free. On the way back Pawel decided he wanted to shop for a rash guard. This is a shirt that is worn while surfing and fits tightly to protect your skin from the friction caused by rubbing against the waxed board. By the time we were home we both had new rash guards. We put them on and were happily modeling them in the reflection of the sliding glass patio doors off of our room.
After our first experience we are hooked, beach sunsets are both beautiful and amazing but also incredible romantic and calming. This time we explored a pile of rocks out on the water and watched the waves crashing. Just before the sunset we headed back to the beach to enjoy the view, this time cloud free.