We weren’t sure what to expect here. It turned out to be a little more touristy than we thought, which wasn’t a bad thing. It’s not a cute town but it has what you need.
Day 1: Montezuma to Brasilito
We had fried potatoes for breakfast with tamarind juice. Today was our most complex shuttle trip. We were ready and downstairs at 8:00AM. The shuttle went past and then came back. We took that van to Cobano, we think? Then we switched to a small bus to go through Tambor, Paquera, and Naranjo to Nicoya, where some people transferred to a van for Samara, Nosara, and Ostional. That left us and two guys going to Tamarindo in our bus. Somewhere along the unnamed dusty roads we saw an upside-down vehicle. Someone is having a very bad vacation.
Our room was ready, along with a cold tropical drink. With a stainless steel straw! Very sustainable. We went to the ATM and made two 100k colon withdrawals. (When ATMs are limited you get cash when you can!) Then we had Bavaria Dark and walked to the beaches, since that’s our main reason for being here. Interestingly the hotel provides sarongs for the beach rather than towels. Which makes sense to me since you can wear them, sit on them, dry off with them. More functional than a towel really.
We came back to Conchal Hotel for happy hour, then swam in the pool for a while, which was refreshing. The jet into the pool gave a nice massage. Live music gave atmosphere.
Day 2: Playa Conchal
We got complimentary gallo pinto, eggs, and plantain with our continental breakfast, which was a nice surprise. They had papaya, watermelon, and pineapple. And cas (Costa Rican guava) juice, which was interesting. Green rather than red. They also had orange juice.
We went to ATM again but it was broken. (That’s why we got lots of money yesterday!) We bought beer at the supermarket, then went to the beach. Getting to the beach from our hotel means a walk into town, by the soccer field (it’s the dry season), then across Brasilito beach to get to the nicer Conchal beach.
Since the road in town ends at Brasilito beach vehicles use it to turn around. Sometimes, like this truck, they get stuck.
There’s a one-lane bridge on the way into town that we crossed over with horses. We took a walk through town to scope out other restaurants for dinner. There’s more to Brasilito than I was expecting.
We revisited the ATM which was fixed so we got 60k colones and $60. It’s handy to be able to spend US dollars and not have to worry about bringing foreign currency home. We bought yucca chips for lunch with beer since we didn’t feel like a full on meal. We swam in the pool and had lunch outside the room. Quiet.
We went to El Forno for pizza. Then we bought a Bavaria beer selection at the store and looked for Trits, a local ice cream sandwich we heard rave reviews about.
Day 3: Hanging Out by the Pool
Today is our day to hang out at the pool. The hotel and restaurant are built around the pool, making a tropical oasis. There are lots of iguanas here. At one point we could see four of them at the restaurant. We took photos of the tropical plants in the courtyard. And we watched orioles right outside our room. Steve pointed them out to our neighbors who were completely uninterested. Probably wondered what the crazy old drunk guy was babbling about. Side note: I don’t think I’ve ever seen so much horse shit on vacation.
For lunch we had gallos with chicken and juice drink (mango, passion fruit). We got Trits from the store for dessert. They are very good!
We had more pool time in the afternoon with beer, then we splurged on dinner since we have lots of colones to spend. We split some ceviche, then shared a ribeye with shrimp and a filet with lobster. And a brownie with ice cream for dessert. Even the vegetables were good!
Day 4: Souvenir Shopping and the Beach
On our last full day here we stopped at souvenir and grocery stores on our way to the beach to scope out options, then hung out at the beach until lunch, which was had at The Spot. An excellent burger and fish and chips. We bought a toucan sarong and an iguana t-shirt at the largest souvenir shop. And we got the change in dollars, which was a plus. We bought two bags of coffee at the supermarket. Back at our hotel, we met a couple from San Antonio who has been coming here for 8 years.
We had ceviche, guacamole, surf and turf, and fajitas for dinner, plus pina coladas for dessert. We were very full. We were going to check out but couldn’t pay because the machine was down. And we crossed the one-lane bridge for the last time.
The hotel restaurant has some clever decorations. The “chandelier” is made from the bottoms of 2-liter soda bottles. The hanging planters from cut off water bottles, with spouts acting as drainage.
Day 5: Brasilito to San Jose
We tried the granola at breakfast. It was very good.
We settled our bill and then reclined in our room. The Wi-Fi internet has been down, so the hotel kindly let us use their desk PC to check-in for our flight. We plan to check out then have lunch before our shuttle leaves at 2:20. We had a mango batido each with lunch, then we just hung out in the lounge area waiting for our shuttle, where Steve saw one last motmot.
We changed drivers en route on our shuttle. We stopped for a break and got a last look at monkeys and macaws in the trees. Our shuttle also got stopped by transit police which was mildly exciting. We haven’t seen a sunset for a while but got to see one as we drove by Puntarenas. The shuttle dropped us right at the airport, which was unexpected. We’d heard they had to stop outside the airport and you had to find our own way from there. There was lots of passport checking but no line at security. We had a redeye flight so we ate sandwiches from Cafe Britt and banana bread from Starbucks with our last colones. Then we waited. Somehow I hadn’t noticed our connecting airport changed!
And just because, some photos of cute Imperial bear cans. (In Costa Rica, you are an Imperial drinker, or a Pilsen drinker. We’re team Imperial, though Pilsen is also good.) And a turtle in the hotel fountain.
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Conchal Hotel is a lovely little boutique hotel that’s reasonably priced. The hotel doesn’t look like much from the road but once inside it’s an oasis of calm. It’s about the only reasonably priced lodging near Playa Conchal and it’s an excellent choice.
There are a few good dining options in Brasilito.
We walked to the beach and around the village. If we’d wanted to explore more of the area we would have rented a car. But we were there for the beach.