Costa Rica Blog

Affects of the Tsunami on the Whale's Tail beach in Costa Rica

Posted by Steve Linder on Wed, Mar, 23, 2011

We were in Costa Rica for the first two weeks of March, 2011 leading 4 back to back property tours of our developments. The earthquake in Japan was all over the news and we had one member of our group on tour that was from Hawaii, concerned about the potential effects of the Tsunami on the Hawaiian Islands. The tsunami did some fairly substantial damage to the big island of Hawaii, mostly near Hilo.

We sat on the porch of our guesthouse watching over the Pacific. At around 4:30 pm we were paying attention, since that was the reported time the waves would reach Costa Rica. Lowland areas had been partially evacuated in anticipation of potential damage. At 4:40 pm we saw a series of 5 or 6 waves making way toward shore. They did not appear to be that big but they were surely the ones we'd been looking for. Most of the day had been pretty calm and the waves were easy to spot.

We headed down the following day to the Playa Bellena Marine National Park in Uvita, just a short distance from our developments. You could see that the driftwood along the beach had been pushed higher than normal and had been condensed in a line at the high water mark, higher than it would usually be. The biggest difference however was the change in the famous "whales tail", a sand formation that resembles the tail of a whale, where currents come from two directions circling two coves and over the years has formed a spitting image of a whales tail. The biggest change was to the spit of land connecting the tail to the main beach, much of which had disappeared from the onslauht of waves. The northern tip of the tail was also damaged, not terribly but pretty significantly just the same.  Here is a photo from after the tsunami.

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Tags: Uvita, Costa Rica National Park, Costa Rica property tours

Planning an Extended Trip to Costa Rica - The Pacific Ring of Fire

Posted by Steve Linder on Fri, Feb, 04, 2011

The cost of visiting Costa Rica as a tourist has increased due to large increase in tourism in the past 4 years. Costa Rica, a country of only 4 million people, had over 2 million tourists in 2010.  Car rentals, hotel rentals and other touristy activities have risen in price but thankfully living there is still cheap by North American standards.  The larger expenses in life, property taxes, health care and insurance are still amazingly cheap by US standards but traveling as a tourist is not so cheap.  Costa Rica is quite rugged and what looks like an easy ride on the map may take hours longer than expected.  There are four mountain ranges in Costa Rica and peaks to 10,000 feet are common.  Roads aren’t the best and driving at night is not recommended since you may come across cattle, cars without lights or sudden changes in road conditions you may not have anticipated.

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Tags: Dominical, Uvita, cost of living, Costa Rica real estate, Corcovado, Real estate in Costa Rica, Traveling Costa Rica, Car Rentals, Costa Rica

La Fogata Barbecued Chicken - Better Than Your Mother's!

Posted by Steve Linder on Sun, Nov, 22, 2009

La Fogata Barbecued Chicken on a Wood Fired Rotisserie:

One of my favorite restaurants in the southern Pacific area of Costa Rica is La Fogata in Uvita.  Their specialty is rotisserie chicken on a wood fired oven but they also serve pizza, pasta dishes and salads.  The rotisserie chicken is about the best chicken I have ever had, a combination of great cooking as well as the fact that the chickens are all free range.  Unlike chickens in the US produced in some factory farm on a diet of corn, these chickens live outdoors and eat things chickens naturally eat.  You can bring your own beer and wine.  The seating area is rustic on a deck covered by a roof but no walls.  They doubled the size of the seating area last year since there was always a line to get a table.  Even with the extra seating, if you show up after 7:00 pm on a busy day, the chicken may be all gone.  Take the first right after the big bridge on the Coastal highway (heading south) and La Fogata is on your left about 200 meters down the road.  If you find yourself in Uvita at a time you are feeling hungry, it is worth searching a bit to find La Fogata.  Expect a half chicken dinner here with sides to set you back about $5 dollars.  

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Tags: food and drink, Uvita, Restaurants Costa Rica, Costa Rica