Friday, April 19, 2013

Our Day In San Jose

Due to Costa Rica being two time zones earlier, we were, of course, up early. We hit the breakfast buffet shortly after it opened (6 a.m.) and had a leisurely breakfast since we know nothing would be open yet in the city. We finally struck out around 8:15 a.m. and wandered around the little park across from the hotel.

We then made our way to the Mercado Central (Central Market). Maybe it was because it was still early but the market wasn't anywhere near as busy as I remember it being when I visited with Lynn. Anyway, we strolled through and then went to the Museos del Banco Central de Costa Rica, commonly known as the Gold Museum.

We arrived before it opened so found a place to relax in the plaza that sits above the museum and people and police watched.

Museum opened at 9:15 and we were the first ones in. Tickets are 5,500 colones which translates to about $11 per person.

We spend about two hours in the museum. Jerry enjoyed it as much as I had previously and we both enjoyed the displays and found the information on the signage very interesting.

For lunch we found a place serving pollo asada (roasted chicken) and then continued to do some wandering about the downtown area, including J stopping into a shop to purchase a couple of Costa Rican music CDs (which, unfortunately, turned out to be disappointing). I was then able to find the same ice cream shop (POPS) where Lynn and I had ice cream during our visit. After purchasing a chocolate brownie ice cream cone, we made our way back to the hotel to rest. As we approached the hotel we passed a small market and I purchased a BIG bottle of water for $3 ... much better than the $2 small bottle at the hotel. We used bigger bottles, throughout our trip, to keep filled the smaller bottles that we carried with us.

We wandered a bit in the evening to find a place for dinner. Decided to give La Criolita a try and we had a very nice meal. But one thing I can definitely tell you ... prices have gone up since my last visit. The cost of restaurant meals is approaching U.S. prices. We were careful and it was still hard to have a restaurant meal for under $10 per person.

(BTW, everyone assured us that the water in Costa Rica is safe to drink. We decided not to chance it and stayed with bottled water and no ice in our drinks ... until we were in Manuel Antonio. Then we relaxed our guard and drank water and used ice at our hotel and we had no problems.)

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