Along the Natchez Trace

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Another Kind of Adventure

We are into our last few days here in Costa Rica, and Bill & I were checking out any adventures we'd still like to have before we leave.

There are all manner of things to do...  snorkel, scuba dive, zip line, tubing, horseback rides, hikes....  several national parks.....  the list goes on.   Several years ago when we were traveling on the Baja, we took an ATV tour and really loved it.  A tour company in Coco offers a couple of tours and we signed up for the Beach Tour.  

The tour company was supposed to pick us up by 9:30...  but, being on Tico Time, Diego arrived about 9:45.  It was about a half hour drive to the site where we'd meet Steven, our tour guide and get acquainted with our ATVs.  

 That's Greg and Francine, our neighbors, who joined us in this tour.

And here's Bill and me...
All geared up and ready to roll...
The first goggles that Steven gave me were so scratched and scuffed I'd never have been able to see a thing.  Francine's were equally unacceptable.  Steven didn't seem real happy about finding us decent goggles, and maybe that's what got us off to a bad start.

We opted for the Beach Tour...  and I'll quote from the brochure...

The Beach Tour rides through the hills, where you can appreciate beautiful landscape, there is a short stop, a breathtaking view where everybody can see the both sides of the bay and also enjoy wildlife such as monkeys, birds, sometimes coatis, iguanas, and why not little snakes.

So, off we head down the road.  
 Steven stays far ahead of us...  and drives in the middle of the road....  We are in this to see the landscape and don't try too hard to keep up.

Behind us...
Yep!  That's Greg and Francine.....

We do see some landscape...
farm and cattle land...

A herd of cattle being driven through town...

Some interesting architecture...  like this church.

We sort of caught a glimpse of that breathtaking view of the ocean...  but Steven didn't even slow down.

On to the beach views...
 We stopped at 2 beaches....  Playa Portrero and Playa Penca
The sands were white...  not the black sands of Ocotal and Coco
It all has to do with volcanic action.

We stopped at the beach for a break.  Greg asked Steven what the name of the resort across the bay is.  Steven didn't know.  (We looked on the map when we got home...  it's Flamingo Resort).  In fact, Steven didn't offer any information about the area at all.  He asked us if we wanted to go into the restaurant and buy a beer or a drink.  We didn't...  we'd brought our own.  And so we wandered around a bit then headed on.

After stopping a few minutes at the second beach, we headed back...  the same road we'd taken to get there.  Again, Steven was so far ahead, and was so busy talking on his cell phone, that he missed seeing the monkeys high in the trees.  If we didn't see monkeys so often, we would have just stopped and taken our time looking.  But by this time, I think we were all ready to head back.

Yes...  the landscape is beautiful...  and the beaches are great....

I don't think any of the four of us have regrets that we went, but I do think we would all have enjoyed it much more if our tour guide hadn't been sullen and such a jerk.

On the drive back to Coco, we told Diego how we felt.  He was sorry about the way it went, and seemed to appreciate the feedback.  

Steven didn't ruin the day for any of us...  we all saw a part of Costa Rica that we hadn't seen before...  and it is quite beautiful.
Now, just in case you're wondering...  we are usually generous tippers..  but, no, Steven didn't get a tip.

That's All For Today!


  1. Steven is fortunate you're so good-natured.

  2. There's nothing worse than a sullen tour guide or a cranky, sour waitress. Glad you managed to enjoy you day though.

  3. Really too bad about your tour guide, and glad you did not tip him.

  4. What a tool. So really, you may as well have just rented an ATV and gone off on your own?
    Have to say though, Steve has a good business plan there. You know, in terms of depth of knowledge in relationship to revenue obtained...

  5. Oh, and maybe you should have given Steve a "tip". In those instances I usually say, "Here's a tip, plant your corn early". And walk away.

  6. That's too bad but as you said, it was a great day and you got to see a new area.

  7. That's too bad. I don't think it would have taken much work on Steve's part to really make the trip memorable. I suppose you would have only seen the 'why not little snakes' if you ran one over. ;)

  8. I think Steven needs to find a new job. Glad you were able to enjoy your day in spite of him.

  9. When I run into cranky people like Steve, I just think to my self that his wife burnt his breakfast that morning. We never know what is going on in the lives of strangers. But, he should not bring his troubles to work and he sure did NOT deserve a tip.

  10. Frustrating to plan an activity and end up with a guide who doesn't even try. I'm glad that you find a way to enjoy yourselves in spite of it.

  11. Glad it was not a complete bust. Sounds like the guide got what he deserved:)

  12. Well? I was laughing at first because of the 'scenery' but then realized what a jerk your tour guide was. Never cared much for guided tours unless the guy was a real hunk.

    You and Bill look mighty spiffy in your going on a tour, tour...