Today's schedule is busy with long bus rides and interesting stops. It wasn't raining when we left our hotel near Tenorio National Park and the Rio Celeste but it was overcast and foggy. It didn't take long before we did get some rain. We heard later that it poured rain at the hotel most of the day.

Our drive followed the same route the people on the rafting tour had taken two days previous, so Ed and I saw the devastation from Hurricane Otto. On the route we drove we saw lots of mud, downed trees, lots of debris and a couple of severely damaged and collapsed houses.

One of the damaged areas.

The drive continued through the mountains crossing the continental divide and down into the Northern Pacific Lowlands. The vegetation changed and so did the weather --- more open forest with a very welcome sun cloud mix. After driving about 2 1/2 hours we stopped for a coffee break plus the bus needed refueling. We spent the time bird watching.

Scarlet Macaws. We've seen them flying but finally got a close up look. The birds are free but I think they are fed which keeps them close.

Back on the bus for another hour and half or more as it turned out. There is some road construction on the road we were driving causing a back up of several miles. You knew the tie up was bad when people were walking up and town the road selling snacks and drinks. Our bus driver is very good at his job and with skill and a little luck we were able to get past the tie up in a reasonable amount of time.

This is a 2 lane highway for both south and north bound traffic. There was a break in the north bound traffic so everyone took advantage of lull in traffic and tried to get ahead --- it was a free for all and some how no one was hit.

Next stop lunch followed by a boat tour down the Tarcoles River. The tour was amazing we saw a number of crocodiles from pretty small to one of the biggest in the river. Birds were also plentiful ---- 42 different species were spotted, 3 of them that aren't regulars on the river. The guide thought we did pretty good considering the tour was only one and half hours long. I could have spent a day on the river.

The basilisk lizard can run on water so it is some times referred to as the Jesus Christ Lizard. It's amazing how fast it runs on those big back legs. A number of these guys entertained us while we waited for our boat.

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On the left, an osprey eating a fish and on the right, a Black-mandibled Toucan.

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It was very exciting to see the Boat-billed Heron and the Mangrove Swallows. We also some familiar birds like the Great Blue Heron, the Little Blue Heron, Black-necked Stilts, the ever popular Red-Winged Blackbird and Egrets.

A view down the river towards the mountain.

One last hour and a half drive but this time part of it was along the Pacific Ocean. It didn't take long before we were in a heavy tourist area .... lots of hotels and restaurants. Our guide called one town a surfers paradise with many of the hotels catering to surfers.

Several Scarlet Macaws flew over our bus.

One of the many small tourist towns we drove through.

At last we arrive at our hotel and were welcomed with an amazing view of the Pacific Ocean.

We had arrived in time to enjoy the sunset.