We join Bill Beard's Costa Rica to explore this beautiful country!
The entire staff of World's Best, plus friends Calvin, Misty and Chris met Bill and Nadine Beard of Bill Beards Costa Rica for a Costa Rica fam trip in November. Even though several of us had been to Costa Rica previously, Bill and Nadine showed us sides of this spectacular country that we had never seen before.
View the entire World's Best Dives photo gallery of the trip.
Costa Rica means “rich coast” and diving off the Pacific coast of Costa Rica is rich as well. The water is chock full of nutrient that draws a vast array of small, medium, large and huge critters. The nutrient rich water brings lower visibility than you might have experienced in other parts of the world, but without it, the food chain could not support it’s spectacular marine life.
For one of our dive days, we headed to the Catalina Islands. On the way, we came across a mother Humpback Whale with her calf. They breached, blew and did tail slaps as we lingered to watch.
Once in the water, we headed up a steep walled canyon to a bowl filled with about a dozen big white tip reef sharks. They swam around and through our group, giving us great, close up experiences.
Up on the shoulder of the canyon, a pair of eagle rays flew by very close to us, and, a bit later in the dive, we came across the largest stingray that I have ever seen. All this in a single dive!
But diving is only part of a trip to Costa Rica. This place is truly an eco adventure destination! There is so much to do, and it is so varied, that a mere week is not enough time to do it all. In fact, you can hardly even get a good start at it in just a week.
After three days of diving, we became land adventurers. About 90 minutes by van from our hotel at Playa Hermosa is Rincon de la Vieja volcano, an area that hosts adventure galore. We spent the day doing a Combo Adventure Tour including: zip lining, rock climbing, rappelling and a swinging bridge. Even though every portion was exhilarating, we were attached to safety lines the entire time, and I felt completely secure.
View the entire World’s Best Dives photo gallery.
The afternoon of that same day brought us to white water tubing on the river. I had tubed on slow, lazy rivers in the past, but this is not the same. It is exhilarating! Fast water...rapids...short waterfalls...twists & turns! What a hoot!!! Then, off to a mud bath and soak in the warm mineral springs. My tired old skin has never felt so good.
Capping off the day, we headed to Arenal volcano and an evening at Tabacon hot springs, a system of hot rivers, pools and springs that flow through the resort. You move up and down through the pools, each one at a different temperature, and lounge in a warm waterfall. A spa treatment and massage completes a tremendously relaxing day.
The next day was white water rafting on Rio Toro. 10 miles of class 2, 3 and 4 white water in 6 person paddle rafts! Our group quickly became a team, with an age spread of 35 to 79 years as we sped down river through the rapids and waterfalls. Once again, what a hoot!
Finally, on to San Jose and a night in the capital city. The next morning some of our group flew out, but the rest of us toured Volcan Poas national park, an active volcano just outside San Jose, where we looked down into the crater lagoon while volcanic steam flowed around us. Then we toured a working coffee plantation and finally had lunch at a local “soda” restaurant.
We only covered a small part of the country. In other directions are even more adventures.
You’ve gotta go!