Student Blogs & Vlogs | College Study Abroad Programs, IFSA-Butler

Semana Santa!

We just had the Costa Rican version of spring break called “Semana Santa” which means “Holy Week,” and I got some very special visitors! My mom and sister came all the way from North Carolina to see me and we had a bast! I can now say that I’ve visited all seven provinces in Costa Rica because we spent the week in Guanacaste, the only one I hadn’t seen yet. And I think I saved the best for last. It was absolutely gorgeous!

Every time you ask Ticos where the good beaches are, almost everyone will tell you they’re in Guanacaste. We went to three of them: Playa Flamingo, Playa Conchal, and Playa Tamarindo. They were all different and beautiful in their own way, but I have to say that my favorite was Playa Conchal. “Conchal” is the Spanish word for seashells, and the beach got its name because instead of sand, a lot of the beach is covered with tiny shells that make the water look so clear. There were a lot of Ticos on the beach because they were vacationing for Semana Santa too, which made the experience even cooler. Some men set up little grills and were cooking up some cheap, fresh red snapper right on the beach. My mom and I got a fish to share and it was delicious!

My sister didn’t feel so well most of the time we were in Tamarindo, which was a bit of a bummer, but it was still a really fun place! The sunsets every night were absolutely gorgeous, and there are lots of restaurants and cool shops. Lots of people like to surf there too, but if you ever do, beware of the random sharp rocks in the ocean. I kinda dove into one and cut up my fingers, oops.

It was so cool having my mom and sister here and getting to show them this amazing place I get to live in. My mom said that her favorite part of the trip was getting to hear me speak in Spanish to the people we interacted with. It was fun showing off what I’ve learned here and acting like a Tica instead of a tourist (even if my family couldn’t understand what I was saying). I already miss them so much, but I am so so glad they got to be a part of my adventure!

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