Imagining a Bluebird Morning in Sunny Dominical
Dominical is a quaint place, but it packs a pretty good punch.
Walking from the entrance of Dominical, located on Costa Rica’s southern Pacific coastline, to the taco shop on the way out of town takes 15 minutes, max. And it is certainly an interesting stroll, with coffee stops, souvenir stands, restaurants and bars, yoga studios, a park/church/school community combo, and real estate/tour offices dotting the pavement.
Pavement? That’s right, asphalt. The real deal, with speed bumps and all.
Up until the end of 2017, anyone who’d visited Dominical only experienced the rugged dirt road that ran through town. That road had more traps than a Scottish golf course. The days of dust plumes and potholes are over, friends, as a paved road now cuts through the heart of this tropical vacation destination.
YouGetHere Property Management has been taking care of some spectacular Dominical rental homes for more than a decade. And while things may change in town from season to season — businesses come and go — the pulse of the place remains intact. Dominical is a laid-back surf town, just like it was a decade ago, with vibrant people, true nature and some darn good waves.
Maybe you’re sitting at your desk right now. Or maybe you’re reading this from your cellphone screen while walking (watch out for that tree!). Perhaps you’ve visited Dominical before. Perhaps you haven’t. It doesn’t matter. You can always close your eyes — when your walk is complete, safety first, people — and put your mind in that place, a place right on the beach in the tropics. A place in southern Costa Rica. A special place that’s six hours nonstop from Toronto or LAX.
As to the best of our imagination, this is what it would be like if you stopped everything you were doing at this very moment and went cruising through Dominical instead:
It’s mid-morning and you’re navigating the coastal highway, with offshore wind howling down from the mountains, grooming the waves into some nice little peaks. Look, there’s the wooden “Dominical” sign hanging from a large guanacaste tree. Better turn into town there.
Wow! This paved road feels incredible! So smooth.
Now, where do you get breakfast? Cafe Delicias or Cafe Mono Congo? Both are solid choices, and they’re real close to each other, less than 40 yards apart at the town entrance. Hungry and craving coffee, you rest your rental car in a marked parking spot and exit the vehicle. You decide to peruse each restaurant menu and then decide where to eat.
But first you stroll out to the Baru River, contemplating this big breakfast decision. Mornings are so crisp on the river, the water glassy and the birds buzzing about. You are at peace, but also starving.
When you’re done with breakfast — you went with Cafe Delicias, ordering gallo pinto, eggs, toast and coffee, and it was fantastic — you decide to walk the beach. Get some exercise, burn a few calories, see the town. Why not? You’re in charge today.
Strolling down the street, there’s a soccer pitch on the right, with a few locals kicking the ball around. Soccer is huge in Costa Rica, the most popular sport there is. Just past the field, in front of Krazy Kinkajou Restaurant, is an old Volkswagen Bus lifted high on a pole. It definitely could use a wash, the VW Bus not the restaurant.
If it’s a Friday — every day feels like a Friday here — there’s a farmers’ market behind Krazy Kinkajou that draws a decent crowd. Lots of organic produce and handmade jewelry for sale on Fridays. Today isn’t a Friday, so you continue your walk. A bit further down the road is Fuego Brew Co., one of the first microbreweries in the entire country and a great venue for live music, as well as Danyasa Yoga, where all types of exercise classes are on offer.
You forge forward, eventually turning right at the big ICE power tower. The beach is only 50 yards down the road from here, and as you approach the sand you see an entire street full of souvenir vendors. It’s super colorful and fun. Checking your wallet, you have plenty of cash. Time to spend it!
After depleting your funds on blankets, bottle openers, wooden trinkets and Pura Vida gear, you hit the sand to dip your feet in the water. The ocean temperature is 84 degrees today. Same as yesterday, same as tomorrow. It’s the warmest ocean water you’ve ever felt.
At this moment, you decide you’re never leaving this place, 90-day visa stamp be damned.
Back under the jungle canopy now, watching the waves crash, an iguana runs past, scampering up a tree with the agility of an alley cat. It’s the largest lizard you’ve ever seen. Then you hear a loud sound from above (Kaa-Kaw! Kaa-Kaw!). You look up, shading your eyes from the sun, and see a pair of macaws slipping through the jetstream. Gorgeous birds, a rainbow of colors in flight. You are mesmerized, and you know this place is truly alive.
It’s not even noon yet.
Today is going to be an amazing day in the tropics. Sure beats the office, doesn’t it?