The second half of our trip was spent in Playa Ocotal, which is what this post will recap. Read about the first half of our trip in Costa Rica here.
Let’s see, where did I leave off?? Oh yeah, Tuesday, the drive in from Monteverde to Playa Ocotal.
We got in right around 1, which ended up being perfect timing because the rest of the wedding crew had just arrived as well. It took us a bit to settle in, but once we did, the swimsuits were on and the drinks were flowing! I’ve never really taken a big trip with a group of friends before so this was definitely one for the books! I loved vacationing with friends, not to mention both of the bride and groom’s families were very warm and welcoming too. We were in great company! Most of our time was spent at the pool, lounging and reading or on the black sands, which is pretty standard for beach vacas. I’m going to recap some of the not so obvious things we did and where we went….Starting with where we stayed.
The bride booked the wedding through the villas, which housed all of our rooms as well! It was really convenient how the resort was laid out and was unlike anywhere I’ve ever stayed. The resort kitchen cooked breakfast, lunch and dinner for us everyday with snacks usually served around 2-3. We, or at least I, stayed well fed the whole time I was there. The food was really good in my opinion, but I could live off Costa Rican rice and beans! Yum. The staff was really friendly and the alcohol was not the typical bottom of the barrel like you usually get with “all inclusive” resorts, so that was a nice perk. The resort itself sat perched on a little cliff overlooking the bay, so a short 5 min walk would get you to the beach. The resort gets an A+ from me!
- Buena Vista – COMBO Tour
Oh man! How do I even try to begin to describe this adventure?! This action packed tour started at 9am and lasted all day! We took a drive to the Ricon de la Vieja Volcano for our first activity, zip lining! From there we went to an extreme water slide through the jungle, ate an authentic Costa Rican lunch, did some horseback riding, took a mud bath, hosed off and hopped into the hot springs… You name it, we did it! It was definitely worth the all day adventure, especially the hot springs! Sadly, I didn’t get any pictures because I didn’t have my camera on me, but you can get the idea from this website.
- Black sand beaches
The black sand comes from volcanic rock, broken up over time which creates the softest sand! I got to spend two different days at the beach, which I loved. For being on the Pacific side, the water was pretty warm! Buuuut that’s because Costa Rican sun is no joke.
- Sunset cruise
The majority of the wedding guests and the bride and groom hopped aboard a sailboat for a nice sunset cruise through Playa Ocotal Bay. We had a couple of hours before the sun actually set, so we sailed over to a cove, anchored down and did some snorkeling. I didn’t see much except some coral and tropical fish, but as I was making my way back to the boat, I saw a sea snake… Swimming away from me, thankfully! Once everyone was back on the boat, we sailed out west. Rum punch, chips and guac, sandwiches, and fresh fruit were served while we waited for the main event! The sunset was BEAUTIFUL, not sure pictures do it justice. The whole experience was surreal for me…On a sailboat in Costa Rica with friends watching the sunset. Does it get better than that? Not really!
- The wedding
The wedding ceremony was down on the beach overlooking the ocean just before sunset. Beach weddings are incredibly picturesque. The ceremony was light and humorous and oh so sweet. I took way too many pictures, I just couldn’t help myself. Everything turned out lovely. Before we knew it, the couple was pronounced man and wife and were walking down the aisle. The reception was held at Villa Cascada, our resort. You could tell that Laura put so much effort and detail into creating the cutest beach themed wedding. It looked like something right out of Pinterest. I’m definitely one to appreciate detail! The rest of the night was spent dining, drinking and dancing! Now, if you will excuse the crazy amount of pictures I’m about to post….But before I do, can I mention how gorgeous the bride is!?! Stunning!
- Post wedding blues
Apparently, the bride isn’t the only one to experience post wedding blues, especially when the wedding is a destination wedding. Not only is the wedding over, but the vacation is over too :( Saturday, the day after the wedding, was our last full day in paradise. The day was partially spent nursing a wild hangover, which meant floating around in the pool on a lounge floatie and drinking lots of water. It really was the perfect way to spend our last day of vacation(less the hangover). I even got to visit the beach one more time and check out the beach bar Father Rooster.
Costa Rica is such a beautiful place and the people there are even more beautiful. Beautiful as in they have the friendliest and kindest personality. Thanks to Laura and Mikey for inviting us to their destination wedding and giving us the opportunity and excuse to experience this wonderful country. I definitely hope to visit Costa Rica again in the future. ….and that concludes my Costa Rica recap! If you made it this far, thank you! You’re awesome.