central america, corcovado national park, costa rica, drake bay, manuel antonio national park, osa peninsula
DAY 1 Sigh. This picture of the beach at Pirate Cove makes me want to go back there. Granted, Pirate Cove, the resort I stayed at in Bahìa Drake, wasn’t all picture perfect – this glowing sunset is softening the “natural” landscape of the Peninsula de Osa. This beach was rugged: noseeums would bite me, hermit crabs would scuttle about, volcanic rock formations would be buried under the ocean at high tide (which, BTW, makes for dangerous swimming if you don’t know they’re there!). No chaise longues to lounge on languidly, no oversize beach umbrellas, no striped cabanas. No, this is a beach in its raw form: two kilometres of deserted sandy shore that nearly disappears at high tide. In fact, this small stretch of beach right in front of Pirate Cove is so underdeveloped and unlandscaped, it’s cut off from those deserted two kilometres by the overflowing Rio Drake at high tide. The only way to cross the Rio Drake is to wade through it at low tide! And with caimans in that river, you’d only want to cross it when you can see what’s in the water. At the mercy of nature? Now, that’s rugged.
When I first sunk my toes into the sand, a thought popped into my head: “This isn’t what I thought it’d be.” And when a swimmer came out of the water and, in passing, warned me about the rocks, I thought: “Maybe this was a mistake.” No, my initial thoughts about Pirate Cove (and Bahìa Drake) wasn’t that it was a tropical paradise. But after a few days there, I realized that ruggedness was just what I desired. And thus, my three-day stay at Bahìa Drake turned into an eight-day adventure to kick-off my first foray into the wonderful Costa Rica. It was the best part of my trip. Had I been more astute, I would have realized that the difficulty in getting to the remote Bahìa Drake was part of its beauty. Continue reading