Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica: Beaches, Bikes and Brownies

We had planned to rush through Costa Rica – it was touristy and expensive we were told. But stories of beautiful beaches on the less developed Caribbean Coast convinced us to make a stop at Puerto Viejo. It was only just over the border from Panama and we’d be passing through anyway. Somehow we got stuck and a quick stop turned into 12 days – judging from the amount of expats here this happens a lot.

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Learning How to Make Sugar at a Costa Rican Trapiche

One of the perks of being an equestrian intern in rural Costa Rica was taking advantage of the local connections. A neighbouring family invited us to visit their trapiche or sugar cane mill, and it was a fascinating experience.

The trapiche is very much a family run affair, and with 13 children in the family there are plenty of people to help out. We entered the barn to the cloying smell of boiling sugar and to oppressive heat and smoke from the sugar cane juice bubbling away. We were shown around to find out more about how sugar is made.

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Riding in a Costa Rican Cabalgata

The opportunity to ride in a Costa Rican cabalgata wasn’t something I could turn down. I was nervous though. I didn’t know quite what to expect: would it be a huge parade of horses through the town, or a gallop in the countryside with the local cowboys?

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