Tortuguero, Costa Rica; Day 1

We do have Wi-Fi access! We were pleasantly surprised our family hotel room has Wi-Fi access, it was advertised as having three full sized beds, air conditioning (a luxury we splurge for) and a shower. Hot water is still TBD and wifi was supposed to be a no, yet here we are.

Today was a travel day but as those days go, it was a good one. We had a three hour drive to start which wasn’t that different/fun than normal. We bid farewell to La Fortuna and Arenal Volcano and listened to our audiobook as we traveled paved roads almost due East. We stopped for some amazing empanadas at a family restaurant about half way through the drive.

La tortillaria y mas

Ultimately our destination was Tortuguero National Park and the town of 1,200 that bears the same name, but you can’t drive there. Arrival is by plane or boat to this remote Caribbean spot. It was formerly dedicated to hunting, but since the 1970’s is dedicated to the protection of sea turtles and their nesting habitat – and of course serving turistas like us. Since we have our trusty rental car, we didn’t choose an organized tour but instead navigated to the public boat dock in La Pavona, about 20 miles from Tortuguero.

We caught the 3 pm boat and spent the next hour winding through the river. This part of the travel day was something we all enjoyed.

As we came around the last corner into the lagoon, we got a view of the town which is charming and focused toward the waterway. There are no cars here, so all transportation serving the visitors and residents of this small peninsula is by water.

First glimpse of Tortuguero

The boat dropped us right at our hotel – the Sunset Rooms.

Boat dock/patio of hotel

We immediately went exploring and found a playground (always welcome) and then across the very narrow peninsula, the Caribbean coast. The kids hadn’t had enough boating so they found another worthy vessel for their adventures.

We finished the day with some surprisingly good pizza and turned in for an early start tomorrow.

Twilight dinner by the lagoon

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