It’s official I finished my first full week of volunteering. What a challenge! I honestly didn’t expect it to be this hard. I spent one week working with children aged 10-12, who barely spoke English and I barely speak Spanish-you can imagine the confusion. Regardless, I’m loving it and I really wish I could give these kids another week of my time. That being said, after a long week, getting away is just what we needed.
Earlier in the week we decided to plan a trip to Manuel Antonio. Manuel Antonio is a beach community that is a 3.5 hour bus ride away from San Pedro. There you are able to enjoy the beautiful beaches, the national park, amazing food, and fun night life.
When arriving on Friday night and after checking into our hotel (hotel Manuel Antonio) we were on the search for food and of course drinks. What a difference getting away can do–we were a large group around 30 but we managed to created sub groups, mine consisting of 7.
A few differences between Manuel Antonio and San Pedro:
- The weather! It has been around 70degrees in San Pedro with hardly any humidity-however in Manuel Antonio it was around 95 degrees with 100% humidity. It was down right unbearable at some points, at least for me anyways.
- Causal–Manuel Antonio is a very casual beach town. People walk around in there bathing suits or anything that is casual and comfortable. San Pedro/San Jose is much more conservative.
On our first official day we decided to venture into the National Park for the beaches. However there is a huge public beach that was across the street from our hotel. You have to pay $10 to enter the national park and it takes about 2hrs to complete the whole thing. We went just for the beaches and honestly I’m not sure what the difference between those and the public beach was. If your looking to just beach it I would skip the park. Although if you have time and appropriate footwear then I recommend hiking the park. I had neither.
The night life in Manuel Antonio is awesome! So many people around just drinking, smoking, enjoying life. One of the best things about Manuel Antonio is their drink policy; there isn’t one! You are able to buy pretty cheap drinks and just carry them around the city with you. It makes for exploring and mingling much easier. Also if you feel so inclined you can try making a bonfire on the public beach. Many people do so and its a great way to relax and unwind with the people you came with-we had a great time!
On our last day we spent some time at the public beach. The weather was a tad overcast but don’t let that fool you-sunblock! Yes I managed to gain color even on a cloudy day. I’m turning a lovely shade of golden brown, its wonderful.
It was really nice to get away for the weekend. Seeing how two different sides of Costa Rican’s live was definitively an eye opener. Even though it was a mini-vacation I still haven’t forgotten the real reason why I am here. I can’t believe I only have 4days left-It has gone by so fast. These next few days will be spent seizing the moment and enjoying life.