Honeymoon: Tabacon/La Fortuna

Waking up in Arenal, Sylvia and I finally got a chance to see the volcano itself from our room. Day one saw the volcano pretty much covered in clouds, but finally getting to see it as we woke up was pretty neat.

The only time I wouldn’t want this view is if the volcano were erupting in my direction

Additionally, day two in Arenal wasn’t nearly as packed as day one. This was by design as most of the activities Sylvia and I wanted to do were primarily happening on other days. We weren’t as sore as we were expecting considering just how much physical activity we’d been through the day before, but I’m pretty sure a lot of that had to do with us ending our day at the Tabacon hot springs. After finishing up breakfast, we decided to go back since our passes were still good from the night before.

Tabacon was a very different place in the relatively early morning than it was late at night. For starters, it was pretty empty so Sylvia and I pretty much got to play around all over the place and take a few photos before settling in to relax in the wonderful soothing hot springs.

I’m pretty sure this is cliche but I don’t really care. It looks cool.

The nice thing about the hot springs isn’t just the fresh water and the heat, but the movement too. Most of the pools were basically flowing or cascading down to other pools so there was always something moving you around a little bit. There really isn’t much else that will relax you more than that. We pretty much took the whole morning to explore the hot springs the way we couldn’t the night before and had more fun with it than you can imagine. We not only found and dipped in every single one of the isolated hot springs, but once we got to the big hot spring pool with the bar built in, we noticed something else that we weren’t expecting.

One of many times Sylvia enjoyed the slide

That’s right, hot spring water slide! We both definitely had our share of turns heading down the warm water into the pool, but Sylvia was far more insistent on visiting it time and again. The morning was more than worth spending at the hot springs and it was a good way to start the day considering our previous day was so jam packed full of activities and adventure. We did run into another couple from Charlotte of all places so I talked to them about North Carolina for a bit, all while thinking it was really weird and cool to run into someone so close to the area that I grew up.

After however many hours, we finally had our fill of the hot springs and decided to go into La Fortuna itself to grab some lunch and check out the town. The lunch wasn’t worth the time really from a food standpoint, although they did have a pretty good guanabana shake. There was a pretty sad cat that clearly was having some health issues, but there wasn’t really anything we could do about it, so we paid our bill and walked around the town. It’s a pretty small place with a central park area that’s about as big as the shops surrounding it.

La Fortuna’s central park area

Sylvia and I didn’t really find much that we hadn’t seen in other places in Costa Rica so it didn’t take long to wander around. The only two exceptions were a chocolate shop that was way too expensive and a potter’s studio that displayed the works of a number of different artists that all used the space. There was a pretty large and interesting selection of masks, so Sylvia picked one up from the owner. Oddly enough, it broke shortly after we got home, but after repairing it, I kind of liked it a little more. There was another little shop with some paintings that I remember being really floored by, but I convinced myself that I wouldn’t be able to get them home without them being damaged so I ended up passing on them. I don’t exactly regret the decision in retrospect, but I do wish that I’d have actually put a bit more thought into how I could have gotten them home. I still don’t know where I’d have put any of them in our house though.

At this point it was after at least 4 PM, so we decided to grab a cab and head back to the hotel. After getting cleaned up, we went down to the main restaurant for a really nice dinner and settled into a relaxed evening. We did have a moment where we both wanted to explore the little hot tubs that we’d seen when we originally arrived, so we headed down to check it out along with a bottle of champagne that we’d been given, only to find out that they basically shut them down after 8 PM. It was kind of lame looking into the darkness and knowing there was a functioning hot tub, but not knowing how you’d get in, much less enjoy a nice glass of bubbly. We said eff it and found a lantern and dipped in anyway though and it was nice at least for a few minutes before we realized that the champagne and hot water wasn’t a good combination for us and we hopped out and finished off the bottle in our room.

All in all, it wasn’t nearly as productive of a day as our first, at least from an adventure standpoint, but it was really refreshing to have an easy day where we could at least soak in some of the local offerings. Damn that sounds lame when I write it out, but that’s pretty much how it felt at the time. I can’t remember exactly, but I’m sure that we were asleep before 10 PM.

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