Wow yogi's, Costa Rica was hot and super humid. Once we stepped outside the airport, my two hour blowout immediately turned into Simba's hairdo from the Lion King. Matt was like "babe, you look like a real Latina". Coming from a Spanish speaking gringo, I took it as a compliment. ;)
I have to say, my hubby really out did himself planning our trip. He rented a fantastic little SUV from Budget and downloaded (ahead of time with a great company) a bunch of maps for our travels to and through La Fortuna, Tamarindo, and Play Hermosa.
Although a few people told us not to rent a car, we did it anyway and it was the BEST decision ever. Not only did we save a bunch of money, we went where and whenever we pleased the entire trip; pulled over to take pics, grabbed lunch at restaurants with a view, explored towns, and made few beer runs when there was nothing walking distance.
Matt went on YouTube before the trip to checkout videos from other travelers who visited and drove to our destinations. The videos we saw were just as the roads were for our entire trip- 99% paved and 100% drivable. I'd say the only thing about driving in Costa Rica is that you must pay attention at all times. Although we felt super safe the entire drive, there were lots of windy roads where it's impossible to see on coming traffic. We however drove a safe speed the entire time, kept our eyes on the road, and had zero problems. :)
After lots of long windy roads and lush green views, we finally arrived to the amazing little gem Royal Corin. Of all the hotels we stayed at on our trip, this one was my favorite. Yes, I'm a sucker for boutique hotels, but it's because I love how intimate they are- this hotel was just that. It had lovely views of the jungle, gorgeous hot spring pools and jacuzzi's, a sick spa, delicious food, and was super close to Arenal Volcano. YIKES!
After we checked in we headed to the lobby bar, grabbed a drink and a delicious appetizer. I of course ordered this veggie dish with no cheese.
Matt did some research and found us a popular little soda (local food) joint to grab dinner at. As a vegan my options were very limited when we would go to "soda" restaurants because lots of the Costa Rican food revolves around fish (great for vegetarians) and certain types of meat. So when we ate local food, we made sure they had veggies on the menu. ;)
After dinner we decided to find a cool place to grab a drink and discovered Lava Lounge. This was a lively little spot and aside from all the reggie music they played, they also played crazy footage of the Arenal Vocalo when it was active. Yikes x 1,000!