Here I go again…


San José to Cartago

28km, 2:25h, Ø 11,5km/h, 481hm

total 10248km

A girl in my dorm-room got up at 5am today. I thought that I should get up as well and leave early – but turned around instead and slept for another 2 hours. I took my time eating breakfast, packed, checked my e-mail one more time, said goodbye to the canadian and left the hostel at 9am. Finding my way out of San Jose was a bit tricky because of all those one-way-streets, but no real problem. I didn‘ t even get lost! Though once I thought I was, but I wasn‘ t. Some people showed me a “thumbs up”, some honked and others asked me where I was going and wished me good luck. That made me realize that it was actually my first day of cycling in Costa Rica. The drivers don‘ t seem to be as considerate as in other countries I‘ ve been to, but that‘ s just my first impression.

I saw many cyclists on racing bikes today, passing me as well as on the other side of the road. Most of them were very serious and didn‘ t even have time (or the will) to greet me. Maybe every wasted breath slows down their average;-).

Until 5km before Cartago it was pretty much all uphill. At the beginning, still in San Jose, my thighs were burning, but after a while it was ok and it felt great to be back on the road!

Cartago (or parts of it) has been destroyed by eruptions of the volcano Irazu several times. It‘ s a city of 140.000 people and my guide-book said that there are several accomodations. I got there already around 11am and rode along what I thought was the main road but couldn‘ t see any hotels. Then I saw a bike-shop and stopped there. My gears needed some adjustment anyway and I asked for a hotel. The woman who worked at the Bici Mania bike-shop called her husband to ask. A few minutes later her son showed up and cycled with me to the hotel which turned out to be the B&B Casa Aura. The owners, Maida and Luis are very friendly and helpful. I‘ m the only guest here, sleeping in a very clean 6-bed-dorm.

In the afternoon we had a cup of coffee together, sitting at the patio during the afternoon rain. I told them everything they wanted to know about my trip and I got some insider information about Costa Rica and learned that “banana” and “platano” are different types of banana.

It was strange to have so much time in the afternoon, it almost felt like a day off.

After nutella-sandwiches, pineapple and nuts for lunch I had Mc Do for dinner. I just couldn‘ t resist;-).

Since I‘ ve never been on a volcano I‘ m actually considering to take a bus to the Irazu tomorrow. This is a great place to spend another night and my bike and gear seem to be very safe here.

Moreover that would give me more time if I‘ ll go to the Pacific or the Caribbean. Obviously it‘ s even wetter at the Caribbean side, but it‘ s a bit easier to get there. To get to the Pacific from here I‘ d have to climb the Cerro de Muerte which would be the highest point of my trip with 3335 m.

I guess I‘ ll decide tomorrow – after breakfast!

Good night



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