I'd have to say, Costa Rica was by far one of my most different vacations I'd had. It was far more insolated then I would normally be. Most of the trip was in the deep rainforest of Manual Antonio, Arenal, and Monteeverde. The only thing in the area most times WAS the hotel. Your pretty isolated in the rainforest. So it was good to have a guide. We did however spend some time in Cartago. I loved the random fruit stands. This one above was in Manual Antonio. So frickin fresh and flavorful. I think during this pandemic I could easily quarantine here. These are two sights we saw in Cartago.
Las Ruinas de la Parroquia was a pretty cool thing to see. It is now the ruins of a church that was built in 1575 as a shrine to St James the Apostle. It was destroyed by the 1841 earthquake, rebuilt a few years later if I recall, and then destroyed again in the 1910 earthquake. Today only it's outer walls remain, but the inside now houses a pretty garden, a good spot to see birds, stroll and people watch. Legend has it that the ghost of several priest wander the grounds.
While I'm not religious by any means, I'm fascinated by church architecture. the Basilica de Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles is a Roman Catholic church in classic Byzantine style, located in Cartago. It was built in 1639. Yet again, it was partially destroyed by an earthquake and series of aftershocks that followed kept it crumbling and incomplete. In 1912 , it got a new architect and took 12 years to finally complete it. Each August over 2 million pilgrims make a spiritual journey to the basilica, many on their knees, coming from various parts of Costa Rica. The interior was very intriguing, I was especially drawn to the elaborate design of the ceiling and little skylights.
I often wonder how our guide Benico is doing. I often think of him. He really gave us a bang for our buck. Even cooked us a great dinner one night.
This was one of the stands. Look at all that goodness. The man could cook. And some of you may recall he looked damn fine in a speedo. You may also recall how I told him it was customary in American culture that the tour guide had to carry around the youngest of the group. He didn't buy it, but he was a very good sport putting up with my shenanigans.
Ah good times.