Tag Archives: Puerto Carrillo

turtle hatch playa carrillo

At Playa Carrillo this morning, we came across small turtle tracks, the evidence of hatchlings scrambling towards the surf.

olive ridley turtles playa carrillo costa rica

It looks like at least 25 of them foiled the poachers, the dogs, and the vultures to reach the sea.


At Playa Carrillo, the beach looks like the Normandy Invasion.  The sand is pock-marked with holes and sand mounds, about a meter apart..


We see this every year, the morning after the first rain of the season.  The holes stretch for a 1/2 kilometer in front of the wetland across the road from the beach.


crabs costa rica

These are the culprits, red and purple land crabs, about the size of a small fist.  It’s a sad fact that many do not make the trek across the road, which is paved in crab shells.

But are they laying eggs in the sand or hatching?



restaurants sammara carrillo costa rica

We’ve always loved the ambiance at El Sueno Tropical.  The open air restaurant, tucked under a traditional Bri-Bri roof is quintessential Costa Rica.  Now that Vinnie and Zaida are off to a new project, we’re excited to see the restaurant re-opened and renamed Salsas.

The new owner, Jose, brings from his Cuban heritage-Miami upbringing and his world travels a slight Spanish flavor to the menu with a nice selection of Tapas (or starters).  We shared  torta espanola, ceviche, frittata de zucchini, and eggplant with mozzarella.  All ranged in the $3-4 and were delicious.  The marinara on the eggplant was a special treat.  An eclectic mix of entrees followed, all beautifully plated and in the $8 range.   The beef teriyaki was cooked to order and the sauce had an authentic taste.  (What is that spice that isn’t in my recipe?)  We’ll have to encourage Jose to add a chicken teriyaki choice for non beef eaters.  My cousin found the Tropical Chicken very good but not enough of the raspberry reduction was presented to add much to the flavor.  So she treated herself to Chocolate Crusted Key Lime Pudding.  Fabulous!  I’m not a big dessert fan but I could do that again.

Welcome Jose and Salsas.  Thanks for bringing a new flavor to Samara-Carrillo.  Although I forgot to ask Jose, I imagine the hours haven’t changed.  Because of the hotel, Salsas is open daily for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  About 8 kilometers southeast of downtown Samara or 2k. from Puerto Carrillo.

el sueno tropical carrillo costa rica

On the roads in Costa Rica, you never know what you'll run into,

sometimes too literally.

art in costa rica

This artist on a Thursday morning presented an entertaining addition to the wide assortment of obstructions usually encountered in El Torito, the village between Casa Mango and Casa Papaya and the beach at Playa Carrillo.  One truck driver told me you have to watch for chickens, dogs, and grandmothers there.  I hope this gentleman survived the day - his painting looked very nice.

More than 1100 bicycles headed for the hills yesterday from the former airstrip at Playa Carrillo. Duran and Carballo won the 58 kilometer Soledad Recorrido with a time of 54 minutes 51 seconds.  You can see the map of the route at

bike costa ricaToday, the 88 kilometer Ruta is the road race with several loops of the paved course between Carrillo and Estrada.

bike races sleep at casa mango and casa papayaTwo of our guests at Casa Mango and Casa Papaya, Ronald Araya Garcia y Jose Joaquin Mora Quiros, won the Soledad in their categories: Open and 60+ respectively.  I knew these guys and their compatriots were serious when they arrived with 6 mountain bikes strapped to the roof of 3 matching white sedans.  They looked like a winning team.

bicycle races in costa rica

Ciclo Guilly organizes bike races throughout costa Rica.

The Soledad Recorrido event  is organized by Ciclo Guilly (the closest approximation in English is “seeclo Weegy” and named after this guy on the right) and returns to Samara /Carrillo twice each year.  Throughout the country, Ciclo Guilly holds more than 40 races annually.

bike costa rica

ciclo guilly costa rica