GJ woman takes a costal trip along Costa Rica, Nicaragua

Jane Fitzgerald took this photo of a sunset from the aft deck of the clipper the Star Flyer, which is part of the fleet of Star Clippers, a tall ship cruise line. This photo was taken off the coast of Costa Rica in January.

A woman climbs to the crow’s nest of the Star Flyer in this photo taken by Jane Fitzgerald, who cruised along the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica and Nicaragua in January.

Years ago, Jane Fitzgerald had looked into booking a cruise to Costa Rica. The price kept her from buying.

Then, about a year ago, she checked in with Star Clippers, a tall ship cruise line. When she spotted a reduced rate and coupled it with the benefit of not being charged extra for sailing alone, she jumped aboard.
The result was a weeklong, all-inclusive guided tour and cruise of Costa Rica and Nicaragua. While the Grand Valley froze, Fitzgerald toured Lake Nicaragua on a boat, river rafted, hiked to waterfalls, snorkeled, picnicked on the beach and explored national parks. Costa Rica boasts 26 of them in a country that is smaller in size than West Virginia. Those national parks, along with other protected areas, encompass more than a quarter of Costa Rica’s landmass.

Fitzgerald initially was hesitant about traveling alone, but any fears she had disappeared.

“Just get out and do it,” she said. “Don’t stay in your rut.”

Name: Jane Fitzgerald.

Hometown: Grand Junction.

Where did you go? Costa Rica and Nicaragua.

When did you go? January 2014.

How long there? Seven days.

Best meal? Aboard the ship. You had your choice of four or five main dishes. You could choose your appetizers and desserts. They had awfully good meals.

Best deal? I really enjoyed the tours I got in the rainforest. It wasn’t that expensive. I also bought a very nice sandstone-carved vase for $9.

Best time to visit? The time of year I was there was awfully nice. The weather was perfect. We didn’t have any rain. It was just balmy winds. Plus, if one goes in January, one gets away from the snow here. (Costa Rica’s wettest time of the year is between May and October, when the average rainfall in a month exceeds 10 inches.)

One travel tip you’d offer: Buy a Scottevest. It’s a very lightweight vest. Mine had 17 pockets. It fits your passport, travel documents, lipstick, raincoats. You don’t need to carry a purse or money belts. When you have it on, it looks like a regular vest.

Did you recently go on a memorable vacation? We want to hear about it — the sights, the food, the travel tips — so we can share it with other globetrotters. Email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) and include a photo of yourself on your trip.


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