About three years ago, maybe more, I got introduced to a guy online named Ben Brown. The twins Jack and Finn Harries, who I’d been following on YouTube for quite a while, were about to leave for their biggest project yet. With millions of subscribers on YouTube they had partnered up with Skype and Sony to embark on the Rickshaw Run - a charity race where teams travel across India in Rickshaws. Jack and Finn’s team, Team Mothertuckers, consisted of several online content creators, on of them being Ben Brown. I immediately checked him out and have followed his adventures ever since. He’s a very talented filmmaker and photographer, and I find him very inspiring and motivating. He’s a part of the reason why I’ve focused more and more on photographer over the past year. Two years ago he travelled to Costa Rica for the first time and via his YouTube channel and Instagram feed I fell in love with the place and knew I had to go someday.
As I'm writing this I’ve now been here for 17 days.
We got off the ferry and had some food. We’d been waiting forever to get one the ferry, and once out on the ocean our food had been stuck on the car deck. It was the usual menu though - cheap and delicious. One of the places Ben Brown had spend a lot of time was a place called Playa Hermosa. Before leaving Denmark I had done my bit of googling on Costa Rica. It turns out that Playa Hermosa (Beach Hermosa), is about as common as the last name “Jensen” in Denmark. However, we had booked a room at Hostel near a Playa Hermosa, just south of Jacó (see the map from the previous post). As we got closer and closer, Daniel, TG and I got into talking about Ben Brown. They have been following for quite a while as well, and had been equally inspired to come here based on his trip. “What was the name of the place he stayed?” “Surf Inn Hermosa” “Oh yea that’s it - THERE IT IIIIIS!!!!” Daniel yelledas we drove right passed it. It might seem silly, but he’s been quite the inspiration for all three of us, and roadtripping around Costa Rica on our own and then reaching one of his destinations was a kinda surreal.
Further down the road we found our hostel. It was owned by two Argentineans, Martin and Maxim. They were very friendly and helped us out with a couple of things. Unfortunately I had had a severe pain in my ear, probably due to all the surfing, so I passed out immediately as I laid eyes on my bed. With the help of Dr. Uncle/Mom I had a plan of attack for the following day - thanks to both of you!
The next day we packed up all of our stuff to take Pernille back to San José as she had to go home. Martin, our host, offered to help us out with a new car as he’d worked with the local Toyota Rental company before - he would help us get a good deal. He went with us to the shop, and after a lot of waiting we had a new car. We decided that Daniel and Pernille would drive to San José in the new one. TG and I would take the one we already had, and return it also in San José. As Daniel had dropped off Pernille he’d come and meet us. Daniel got stuck in traffic, so after waiting for him at the rental place for about half an hour we decided to seek out a soda - the Costa Rican term for a small local restaurant. We didn’t find one, but we did find another restaurant. TG and I did perhaps the most american touristy thing ever - stormed in, found the first waiter and asked “Do you have wifi?” “Yes” “Fries?” “Yes” “and Coca Cola?” “Yes” “Brilliant, we’ll have it all please!”. It only occurred to us afterwards how horribly touristy and cliché those questions must have come across as, but we were SO hungry, tired and thirsty that it was the most natural things to ask. After little while Daniel arrived, and we all ordered some dinner. Having ate wraps with rice, avocado, frijoles and hot sauce for days at this point, it felt really great to eat something else. All full the time was now about 7:45pm so we had to get going, as we had a two hour drive a head of us to get back to the hostel we had left in the morning. I got behind the wheel, Daniel fell a sleep in the back and TG was in charge of the music. It quickly began raining, which made the drive a little longer than expected, but we arrived safe and sound a little past 10pm.
The following day we had a bit of failed adventure mission, but it did lead to a beautiful drive around the mountains. As of that we spend our afternoon chilling by the pool having a couple of beers with our hosts and some of the other guests. With the sun starting to set we went down the beach. Initially a bit disappointed as it was a little cloudy, but then the sun dropped below the clouds in the horizon and it turned into another banger of a sunset. Absolutely stunning. We had a look around and saw that we had walked right passed some slacklines tied between a couple of palm trees. We put our stuff down and all gave it a go. There was one about 40cm above the ground and one 1m above the ground. Having fooled around for quite a while a young local guy came out of the water with his surfboard, showered and then joined us. He definitely wasn’t a rookie. In his first go he was jumping around, doing somersaults and all kinds of cool tricks, meanwhile the three of us was struggling to just keep our balance for 5 steps. For quite some time we had only used our concentration for the technical gravel road drives, on a little bit of surfing and on having a good time. Practicing our balance on these slacklines required deep concentration and keeping calm and we really enjoyed the mental challenge.
After spending a few days in Playa Hermosa we headed for Manuel Antonio. A beautiful area with a great beach google said. We got on Airbnb and found a hostel right next to the sea. As we’d spend most of our day hiking to the top of a mountain in the most ridiculous heat, only to find out we’d taken the wrong route, walking back down again to then hike up the river we’d initially been looking for (we’d literally crossed the river), we were a tiny bit exhausted and therefor left Playa hermosa well into the afternoon after getting some lunch - so as per usual we were set to arrive in the dark. We found it though, without any hassle at all. As we got our stuff out of the car we laughingly agreed that we might be the worst backpackers in history. First of all we have a car. Secondly, we carry around way to much shit - excuse my french. We are down to three people, yet our trunk was stuffed with: 2 large backpacks, 1 duffle bag, 2 skateboards, 2 “stuff” bags, about 4-5 shopping bags (one of them only transporting an EMPTY nutella glass, don’t ask me why), 1 sleeping bag, 1 day pack and 2 camera bags. WE ARE HAVING A BLAST THOUGH!
Upon arrival we met some cool people - Dennis, a young guy from Belgium and Mel & David, two friends from Canada. We quickly connected and decided to go to the supermarket to get food for a shared meal - pasta with tomato sauce. We spend 3 nights at the Beachpacker Hostel playing table tennis, bodysurfing the massive waves on the beach, relaxing in hammocks and taking part in a 20 people beer pong tournament at the hostel which two very dedicated Canadian girls set up. We had so much fun at this hostel and met some awesome people. It is so cool to see how easily you can get along with people. We’d literally only been at the hostel for five minutes at we’d already made three new friends.
We are currently in the middle of the nowhere in the area of Drake Bay on the Peninsula of Osa - but that will have wait to the next post!
All the best