Costa Rica Travel Diary - Alajuela - Hey Mishka - Michelle Christina Larsen

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I spent the past week in a little Costa Rican surf town off the Caribbean coast, doing yoga and having magical experiences with a group of amazing gals from around the world, including one of my favorite humans on the planet, Camille of This American Girl.

The focus of the trip was yoga, wellness, and to experience the jungle in a way only those who live there really can. It was deep immersion from the food to the activities. I even got to practice my Spanish, which was good, because I’m jetting off to Mexico in just a couple of weeks!

Here are some snaps from part one of this incredible trip, landing in San José and hanging out in Alajuela for a few days.

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Packing for this trip was a challenge, but as always, I avoided checking luggage by bringing the bare minimum! I also found this amazing travel bag, which I highly recommend.

It also helped that the climate was conducive to tiny dresses and other things that don’t take up much room.

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It’s funny that I took so many photos of my cute pink passport. Maybe I subconsciously knew I would immediately lose it upon passing through customs? *laugh-cry-sob*

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Ready for take off! I’m a pretty nervous flyer. Can you see it in my eyes? Haha. It’s worth noting that this was actually my first flight alone, and my first time visiting a foreign country on my own.

I get the jitters during turbulence, but I never let that stop me from embarking on a new adventure. The excitement of landing somewhere is so much more intense than the nervous vibes of being at 30k feet.

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As we neared the airport, the views were absolutely breathtaking.

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Landed, safe and sound.

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Any flight jitters I had were wiped out immediately upon arrival as I met up with some of the other girls on the retreat outside of the airport and jumped into a cab.

We were whisked off to Alajuela, which is the second-largest city in Costa Rica next to San José. We checked into the adorable Villa Margarita. The villa property houses a guest house, an outdoor cafe, as well an informal dog sanctuary.

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How cute are these rooms?

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Even the bathroom was cute.

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We were treated to Costa Rican beer as soon as we put our bags down.

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And then, of course, I obsessed over the dogs for hours.

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Here are some of the other girls lounging. At this point, we had all just met, but we’d get to know one another veeeery well over the next week.

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In the mornings we had a tropical fruit, eggs, and whatever else Margarita wanted to whip up. She cooked breakfast for everyone staying at the b&b, singlehandedly!

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Our time in Alajuela was super chill, and a good way to get used to the intense sun. I’d just come from a snowy New York winter, after all.

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And speaking of acclimating, the first thing that hit me about Costa Rica?

It looks like Jurassic Park!

The plants are enormous, majestic and hard to stop photographing. Everywhere you look, there’s a magical new leaf in your face. So amazing.

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On the last day, we bid goodbye to our temporary home and jumped in a van to trek almost five hours south to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

These are some shots I took from the road.

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We stopped for snacks at one point and withdrew some gorgeous Costa Rican cash. Look how beautiful these bills are!

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We finally arrived at the boho-tastic beach town after the sun had set. We settled into our house, gave Camille bear hugs, and drank a coconut.

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A minimal, tropical abode!

This dreamy casita would be my home for the next week, and it was a hop, skip and a jump from the ocean.

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And then…

I had a classic Mishka moment.

Once we gathered on the beach for a welcome circle under the stars, I realized I left my passport on top of an ATM in the airport.

So much for meditating!

The next day, I called the embassy and arranged a solo mini-retreat to San José. That part of the trip ended up being kind of awesome, actually.

But you’ll have to catch the next post to learn more about that…

Have you ever been to Costa Rica? Any tips for future trips? Drop a comment below and share!

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Written by Mishka
A city girl who loves palm trees, strong coffee & late night writing. Founder of lifestyle blog Hey Mishka, co-founder & writing coach at Day Job Optional, and designer at Maison Minnaloushe. Learn more about her here.