A Backyard Snapshot: Playa Matapalo

From time to time we find ourselves in a location with limited internet access. That is the case in our current house sit in Playa Matapalo. We wanted to keep our blog as up to date as possible so we will publish several short “snapshots” over the next 5 weeks while we are here.


The view of our backyard

One of the attractions of Costa Rica is the extreme diversity of habitats and ecosystems in a relatively small country. We are just over 100 kms southwest of Atenas but it seems a world apart. Atenas is in the hills of the Central Valley, relatively cool, somewhat dry, and has what many people call “the best climate in the world”. Playa Matapalo, on the southern Pacific coast however is very hot and humid.


Our backyard in Atenas

We arrived just over a week ago and will be here another 5 weeks looking after a beachside house and a very lovable dog, Omber. The dark brown beach is visually stunning and stretches for about 11kms northwest and southeast. It is not a great swimming beach, the waves break too short for surfing but at low tide there are terrific rolling waves for boogey boarding.

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Playa Matapalo looking southwest at high tide

From our shaded back veranda the sand stretches through palms towards the beach and the sound of the waves breaking (often quite violently) is a 24 hour backdrop to our life here. Sloths, white-faced capuchins, opossums, lizards, and many birds keep us company along with the gardeners in the neighbours’ yards and the occasional people walking the beach. Hot, lazy days with violent rain at night has been the norm. Intermittent internet, power, water and telephone are common. Our chores include keeping the sand off everything, the yard clear of all the debris and looking after Omber which combine to provide us with plenty to do.


One of two sloths who inhabit our trees on a regular basis

Erik and his girlfriend have come and gone, and we will head back to Canada for an unknown period of time in late June to apply for our Portuguese Residency Visa. Until then we will be staying cool and heading to the nearby surf town of Dominical to compose our posts and look after other online activities.


The beach at Dominical

Please be patient if we do not respond to comments or questions right way.

Pura Vida from Tim and Anne

About Tim & Anne Hall

We sold almost all of our belongings and left our home in Nova Scotia in April 2016 to experience as much of the world as we could. We spent over a year slow traveling in Latin America and Europe, and are now living happily in the Portuguese Algarve, Portimao to be specific. We are gradually chnging the focus of our site to feature images of Portugal. Stay tuned - its a work in progress.
This entry was posted in Central America, Costa Rica, House Sitting and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to A Backyard Snapshot: Playa Matapalo

  1. Susan says:

    Beautiful spot. Love

    Liked by 1 person

    • timannehall says:

      Hi Sue. It is a very beautiful spot for sure. There are very few people here on the beach and it is wonderful for walking at low tide. This is the closest we have lived to the beach so it takes a bit of getting used to the constant roar of the waves which is a background both day and night. It has been a great experience for us.


  2. Gilda Baxter says:

    Sloths are so cute, I can’t believe you have one in your backyard? Costa Rica is definitely on our list, great idea to do a house sitting there, looks like a very beautiful place😄

    Liked by 1 person

  3. timannehall says:

    Hi Gilda. Yes, Costa Rica is definitely a beautiful country and very diverse. There is a lot of different experiences packed into a small area. In addition to the sloths, there is also a troop of about a dozen monkeys that come through fairly regularly. House sitting can be a great way to experience it, but especially for the first time you have to chose the location carefully. Thanks for reading.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. kemkem says:

    Looks like a beautiful place. I wouldn’t like to see monkeys or sloths so l would be a nervous wreck for sure 😀.

    Liked by 1 person

    • timannehall says:

      It is beautiful for sure and you can get lost watching the waves endlessly rolling onto the beach. But if you’re not into “critters” probably best to look at pictures – monkeys, sloths, lizards, opossums, bats and an endless variety of insects.


  5. Ah, that pic of the sloth is awesome and I love the idea of all those critters in your backyard (as long as they’re not coming inside!) We loved the beaches of Costa Rica but were often disappointed that they weren’t swimming beaches. Watch that boogie boarding Anne and you two have a great time!

    Liked by 1 person

    • timannehall says:

      We have a great time watching them all and don’t have too many inside with us. Our trusty companion Omber keeps most at bay (sorry for the corny hound joke). The waves are quite powerful but they break a little distance off the beach so it’s fun inside, even if you can’t really swim very much.


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