San Blas Islands - Panama City - Liberia - Tamarindo, Costa Rica

19 Nov 2005

Liberia, Costa Rica parking refused

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We got off to a bright and early start. In fact, the lodge manager Ernesto made us speed up as he wanted to meet a new load of tourists who were arriving at the airstrip in the local airline’s Twin Otter. Just before leaving Elvira, one of the Kuna waitresses at the lodge, managed to find a few minutes to put a Kuna bracelet on Angela's wrist as a farewell present.
When we arrived at the airstrip the embarrassed lodge manager handed us an official looking document, beautifully handwritten in impeccable Spanish, to advise us that the village chief had decided to increase the landing and parking fee by another USD 20!
Our flight back to Panama City and formalities at Marco Gelabert airport went smoothly and we were soon off again for Liberia, Costa Rica. Three hours later, we were greeted by smiling faces and no anti-drug police in Liberia.
We were just thinking this was to be a piece of cake when they told us that, unfortunately, due to work on extending the apron, there was not enough space for general aviation aircraft to overnight there. Flemming hadn’t checked the notams! The friendly officials were prepared to bend the rules and allow us to push the plane onto some grass to get it out of the way, but we were out of luck. Some civil aviation person in authority arrived from San José just then and told them that under no circumstances were we to be allowed to remain there.
This meant we had to move on to another airport the same day, which in turn meant that we would need to obtain permission for a domestic flight in Costa Rica. (It was too late to continue on to Guatemala that day.) To obtain the permit, the Operations office had to fax Operations in San José. As a result, we spent a total of 3 hours at Liberia airport before we could take off for Tamarindo, a small airstrip 15 minutes flight away near the Pacific coast.
We found a hotel in Tamarindo set in beautiful gardens with swaying coconut palms just beside a surfers’ beach. We just had time for some body surfing in the pleasantly warm waters before the sun set. We dined al fresco in the hotel garden.

Sunrise over Playon Chico

Elvira put a Kuna bracelet on Angela's wrist as a farewell present

Elvira and Argelia waving goodbye

Arrival in Tamarindo, Costa Rica

JAlbum 6.0 Copyright: Angela & Flemming PEDERSEN

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