For the month of August, we have rented a very simple house on the beach at the Osa Peninsula, in the Southern Pacific tip of Costa Rica. The house has no internet, no warm water and no washing machine. But it has a perfect location: beachfront, coconut trees, mangroves and an endless view over the Gulf of the Osa Peninsula.
Our choice to be here precisely this month is not random. We have a target.
During August, Antarctic Humpback whales come in great numbers to this part of the world to raise their calves. The calm waters of the Gulf in the Osa Peninsula – which is called Golfito – are the perfect breeding ground for these gentle giants. It has plenty of food (or so we have been told) and is safe from most predators.
We arrived some days ago, and on the second day, we saw the sprays of two whales in the distance. We were just at the beach, having a swim, and there they were! We could see the sprays with our bare eyes! We were told that they had already been seen on the other side of the peninsula (at Drake, on the Pacific side) and that the locals were expecting them to arrive to Golfito at any time. Yet, they were surprised when we saw them. Probably the first ones, someone said to us.
Needless to say, Frank and I were jumping with joy!!. How lucky!! Now, we are patiently waiting until there is a considerable number so as to go on a whale watching tour. I CAN NOT WAIT!
But this place is not only about whales. Almost every day, we see turtles and quite often dolphins as well. Marine turtles get REALLY close to the beach, and it is not unusual to see one or two sticking out their heads to breathe, a couple of meters away from when we are swimming. It is magic and surreal.
Today, as I took Kika for a walk, I saw several fins in the water. I called Frank, who came running with the binos. It was a large group of dolphins jumping ahead of a guy doing paddle surf. We could see mums with their youngsters, adult dolphins jumping out of the water, just having fun.
And suddenly, I felt so incredibly grateful and fortunate. To be here, to be part of nature in such an unspoiled way. In a place that, at least for now, animals are not scared to come close by, to check those strange (and still very white) two-footed animals that smile idiotically at them.
Just Pura Vida!
Just to give you a peek of the magic of this place….