A Week Into Costa Rica

(Holiday Inn Express, San Jose, Costa Rica)

I really wish the movie title Planes, Trains, and Automobiles had a boat somewhere in it. Then I could correctly use it in this weekly wrap up post. And the accompanying theme song would be something along the lines of “We Don’t Take Pictures Anymore”.

With the week properly named and soundtrack set, I can proudly announce Oceanna has dropped anchor in her seventh country. After a quiet overnight passage from Boca Chica, we rounded Punta Burica to watch the sun rise over Costa Rican land.

Starting out as a couple of sailing virgins we have successfully and safely navigated the coastal waters of the North Atlantic, crossed the Caribbean Sea, experienced our very own Panama Canal transit, and stretched our learned, sailing muscles in the Pacific Ocean. I’d say we are well on our way to earning our salty chops.

Our arrival in Costa Rica represents a lot of things for us. Costa Rica means World Class surf; a long-awaited, wonderful onslaught of visiting friends and family; and currently, on the proverbial batter’s deck, a trip to Mexico to celebrate Gregory’s brother’s wedding. A trip we are so looking forward to. We are beyond excited to see everyone, but it also marks a big step for us and Oceanna. It will be the first time we leave her for an extended period of time. So with the anxiety of new parents leaving baby for the first night, we prepared to leave Oceanna.

First step was to make her presence, and ours, in Costa Rica official. Now I don’t care what people say about Costa Rica being an expensive tourist destination, we spent a day visiting Customs, Immigration, and the Port Captain and didn’t spend a nickel to clear into the country. A pleasant surprise from the hundreds of dollars we’ve spent at every other country so far.

With Oceanna clear and legit we began to buckle her down for her week-long stay at Land and Sea in Golfito. Land and Sea is a marina owned and ran by two ex-cruisers – Katey and Tim. We had heard many great reviews of the place and knew the moment we checked in that we had found the right spot. We moored Oceanna on a ball a stone’s throw from the marina dock and made our way in to meet Tim, Katey, and their fleet of friendly, yet effective watch dogs.

Back on the boat we set to stowing the surf boards (man do we have a lot of boards!), the outboard engines, and anything else handy and tempting to grab. We’re more than confident leaving Oceanna at Land and Sea, but always better safe than sorry.

The final touches this morning before our 5 am bus into San Jose included putting the Bonsai and herbs in tubs of water for a self watering experiment, and placing jars of Clorox in our three sinks to help combat mould that is a guaranteed eventuality of a closed up boat. With that complete, the hatches closed, we locked the doors and said goodbye.

A seven hour bus ride later we found ourselves in the San Jose Airport Holiday Inn taking full advantage of the unlimited hot water and relishing in the use of a clean towel with no thought of hand washing it later. It wasn’t until we tried to catch some shut-eye before our morning flight that we found land-life’s disadvantage. It was just so damn quiet! We laid awake, burning time, impersonating our favourite boat sounds. Greg on the whirring fridge fan, while I brought in the bass of the rumbling bilge pump.


Setting out from Bocha Chica. Next stop the World’s Second Longest left. (Surf speak for a good wave.) Pavones here we come.


Our final Panamanian sunset. 


Sunrise over our seventh country Costa Rica!


  1. Every sunrise and sunset is more beautiful than the last one, or your timing is getting better at taking just the right picture! I love to see every one of them!

    1. They’re starting to be the only pictures I take! I must get better. Or better yet, you should just come down and take photos for me.

  2. Bo McNeill · · Reply

    Welcome back to the online world, I am sleeping better!!

  3. Kaycee: I cannot believe the Bonzae is still alive! Good job

    1. Me either Mick. Me either! Believe me, it’s been on the brink, but always seems to bounce back!

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