For our first two nights in Costa Rica we had booked a cabana at Albergue el Secorro, a family owned and run farm that moonlights as an eco-lodge, located North of San Jose, just south of San Miguel. It is on the Costa Rica Birding Route which is a group of lodges working together toward conservation in Costa Rica.
Albergue el Secorro turned out to be as fabulous as its reviews indicated, but the adventurous part was in the getting there. There are two different ways to get there and despite the fact that we were driving in the dark and in the rain, we decided to take the smaller, less well-marked, but slightly more “direct” route. This also was the way the GPS sent us to the coordinates we had programmed in. Oh My! Once we left the main road we had 5 miles of mainly gravel road up and down and around very steep hills. At first we followed the GPS “lady” to “our destination.” Unfortunately, where she sent us was a barbed wire gate in a horse pasture. We thought maybe it was a back way in but with the gate closed we decided it best to turn around and try the opposite direction, hoping for a sign to our place. This took us to an even more out of the way horse pasture. Keep in mind that all of these roads were going straight up and down multiple hills the whole time. We drove around on these dark deserted roads for maybe an hour and a half, but never saw a sign. At one point, a farm looked promising and we pulled in a driveway where a man came to the door in his underwear. We decided it was probably not the right place and moved on.
We finally turned around when the road became more grass than gravel and we were clearly not on a “road” any longer. At this point we agreed that the only thing to do was to retrace our steps back to the main road and try the more well-travelled route. This was probably about a good ten miles on bad roads but we had no other choice. Probably should have decided to do it a lot sooner. We stopped in the nearby town of San Miguel and got decent directions though things still were a little fuzzy. Nevertheless, with only one wrong turn because of an unmarked road, we finally arrived at Albergue el Secorro. Don Jose greeted us, and things definitely picked up from there.
After a great meal we agreed to meet Don Jose for a walk at six in the morning, breakfast at 7:30 and after that we would play it by ear.
The next morning, we really only walked a bit around the property but there was plenty to see. I already posted a few pics last time, but here are a few more from that area. More to come next time too.
Crested Guans were common and easy to find.
Montezuma’s Oropendola were nesting nearby.
Clay-colored Robins, Costa Rica’s national bird, were common and easy to find everywhere on our trip.
More beautiful birds to come.