The sleeping outdoors on a deck chair was a great experience. Once in San Carlos we had some time to kill until the boat would leave to Los Chiles in Costa Rica. The first boat in the morning left without us because some guy in army suit thought that four loaded touring bikes would sink the boat. We spend the time until the afternoon running around town, discussing options, which included entering Costa Rica illegaly at a not yet finished border crossing over land, and talking to the port authorities. Finally our persistence paid off and we were allowed on the boat in the afternoon. We stopped at the border at some grim looking soldiers which made us glad that we did not opt for the illegal entry and soon after arrived in Los Chiles. There was a lot of talk amongst travellers in Nicaragua that you would need a flight out of Costa Rica to receive a stamp as well as a yellow fever vaccination. In the end none of that was needed and instead of any demand, a smile and good wishes for the road were offered. We shared a room and thus had an affordable place to sleep despite the sharp increase in cost since leaving Nicaragua. Paul and i waved goodbye to Tina and Ben the next day as they wanted to take it slower, but maybe we will see each other on the roads of South America.
The road led over rolling hills with hardly any traffic. Soon i also parted with Paul as he wanted to take the quicker route along the pacific while i decided to investigate the Carribean coast. As we shook hands, the dark clouds had already gathered around us and soon i was riding through pouring rain. Soon i stopped as the sight with rivers and waterfalls over my eyes wasn’t the best and read a book for a while sheltered in a bus station. The rain continued the whole night and i just made a rush to reach the next town where the owner of an internet cafe refused to let me use one of the computers while water was still dripping from every part of my body. Inquiring about accommodation, the outlook to pay a little more than ten dollars for a dry place to sleep didn’t seem too bad anymore. The next day’s ride to San Miguel began with a nice downhill until i hit the main road with heavy traffic to and from Puerto Limon. About halfway there i met a swiss and a german cyclist on the last leg ot their tour through South and Central America as they were returning to the port where they would take a ship leaving towards Hamburg after two years on the road. After Puerto Limon came a welcome change as the road became quiet towards Puerto Viejo, a place mainly catering for backpackers. On the next day i visited the “Refugio nacional gandoca-manzanillo” where the rainforest borders directly on the coast.
Some howlwer monkeys, sadly almost no birds and rather small animals and insects like this spider, into whose net i almost ran, could be seen.
After a ¨shortcut¨ through some hills on very rocky roads, i cycled the last kilometers towards the border with Panama.
The old railway bridge serves as border crossing where no cars are allowed which is the reason for the low traffic towards the border. Although there is nowadays a bridge next to it over which some trucks are allowed to pass. It was a rather quick spin through Costa Rica. One reason was the increase of the prices, another that interesting places like national parks are mostly reachable but not explorable by bicycle and finally that after some months in Central America i was longing to reach South America and the Andes.