Currently, I’m stationed at the beautiful GAIA Hotel & Reserve in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica. I’ve been here for about 5 weeks now and feel like it’s been a lifetime since I arrived. Going back to my first week, everything was a blur. This is my first trip away from home and was initially very worried about what trouble I might stumble into.
The hotel itself is a small 5-star boutique hotel with amazing views of the surrounding rainforest and the ocean. The howls of monkeys has become my new alarm clock. Since the hotel has it’s own private reserve, there is tons of wildlife to observe including; brightly-colourful Macaws, White-faced monkeys, Sloths, Lizards, Howler Monkeys and much more!
I was lucky enough to experience zip-lning for the first time. What a rush! Zip-lining through the tropical jungle was definitely worth the trip. Aside from the fact it was about 40 degrees out and we had to hike for a great distance, it was all worth it once you got hooked onto the line.
I’ve been able to travel into town and experience the beauty of Manuel Antonio beach. It sure beats the view form Centennial’s third floor windows. The sandy beach was filled with tourists from all around the world, soaking up the hot Costa Rican sun. It was pretty essential I got a coconut to drink out of. I mean, how many other students from Toronto can say they enjoyed this scene in October?
The Costa Rican people or “Tico’s” are very warm and inviting. They never fail to wish you “Buenos Dias” or strike up a quick conversation. I do enjoy the way of life here. Everything is much slower paced and makes you realize the more important things in life. I was fortunate enough to be in this beautiful country, filled with the most gracious and helpful people I had ever met. The area is a tight-knit community, aside from it being a tourist area. All the locals know everyone. As soon as I became friendly with 1 person, it seemed that I became friends with everyone.
Stay Tuned for more!