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  • Writer's pictureJoanna

Pura Vida

Updated: Jun 18, 2023

Once I was out of the only-me resort, I hit the dirt path once again, and made my way into civilization....

Actually, I’m lying.

Before I hit Samara, I checked out of The Flying Crocodile, and hit nearby Playa Barrigona.

White sand.

Turquoise water.

Hot sun.

White me.

And subsequently... Red me.

I am slowly trying to re-introduce my roly poly oly belly to the sunshine again… and it's suffering ever so slightly. It gets about 15 minutes exposure per day and that’s probably too much. I now have this big red blotch plastered over my starch belly!

Once I had my fill of beach and sunshine time, I got back in my Bird and ventured into Samara.

... and it only took the crossing of one river.

I can honestly say, so far, of all the towns I have explored over the past three weeks, Samara has become my favourite. Not too incredibly touristy… nothing too pretentious at all. Samara is very locally owned and locally loved with a laid back atmosphere and a pura vida aura … and oh, the beaches…. the beautiful, palm-lined, pristine beaches.

My hotel was booked on a whim. It seemed cheap and reasonable, conveniently located… unlike the remote Flying Croocodile. I was only staying one night, so I booked, crossing my fingers and hoping for the best.

Well, the best is what I got. It had the undeniable characteristics of a regular hostel… but ALL the good ones outweighed any bad ones! I had a small, private room in what appeared to be almost a tree-house -like structure. My wee apartment came with a twin bed, built right into the wall, my own bathroom and my very own balcony, hammock and all.

It had a pool, communal cooking facilities, public lounge, massage therapist, yoga classes… It was an absolute gem and I can’t speak highly enough about it.

It was divine.

This is exactly the reason I keep on giving hostels a chance, regardless of previous and frequent nightmare experiences. There was a screaming baby... but I let that slide.

There was no complimentary breakfast, but they did provide a large vat of fresh coffee in the morning. There was sugar... but no complimentary milk, so I had to open the fridge and steal a little bit from “Julie.”

Thank you, Julie, whoever you are.

I explored the little town... did a walk on the beach... feasted on octopus tacos (which were delicious)... drank a lemonade slushy... visited the Belen Waterfalls... bought a few trinkets... it was bliss. Just a couple lazy days in Samara and exactly what I needed. Then I popped back to my oasis to dip myself into the pool and hang out in my hammock, on my own personal tree house balcony...

This was the life.

Pura vida.

If I had to pick anywhere to settle down in Costa Rica, Samara would be it. I was kicking myself for having not booked more time here. Well... maybe kicking myself for having booked The Flying Crocodile, outside of town, originally...

I met up with Junnie, Caroline and Liam at a little Mexican restaurant called Frida’s and, of course, we all split delicious bean-coated nachos! The bean load was a little excessive, it was actually quite ridiculous how many beans were on these nachos, and we all ending up feeiing the lasting effects of the musical fruit.

How was I to know that the very next day, I would get lost in the jungle?...

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