2023 Tope Nocturno de Atenas

With local activities returning after two years of none because of Covid, Atenas had only the second Tope (= horse show or horse parade). For years the city had stopped it because the horse people had been trashing the town with what was almost a drunken brawl. Well it started again just before Covid and with the pandemic over, is on again. And theirs is unique in that it is at night which supposedly allows for more participation. Well, my evaluation is not very positive. The first two dozen or more horses were ridden by serious horse people with well disciplined horses just before it became dark. Then as if queued by the darkness, hundreds of horses chaotically rode all over the streets, back and forth, with a large percentage of the cowboy wannabes drinking beer and other liquor handed them by people in the audience from their ice chests. There was no order and no particular beauty. I would personally prefer a tope in the daylight with no beer or other alcohol. But I don’t have to go next year and probably will not. I like the Oxcart Parade better anyway!  🙂

2023 Tope Nocturno de Atenas


That’s one pix for the email announcement and online is a slide show of my poor quality night photos.

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Tope de Mercedes (Horse Parade)

The next little town north of Atenas on highway 135 is Mercedes and they had their annual horse parade today, my first to see. Every town in Costa Rica has a “Tope” or horse parade annually. For more photos see my “Tope de Mercedes” Album.  I think I got quite a few “keepers.”

Horse Whisperer – Bonnie from my Spanish Class

Margaret’s “Family” – She, in black, is also in my Spanish Class.

Horses is what it is about, followed closely by beer and cute girls!

For some it is a family affair.

Free Beer! From pretty girls! The Tope Muchachas!

Riding under the Roble Sabana, Pink Trumpet Tree

Our Third Beach Sunset Rained Out

Today was the third and last night on the beach and about thirty minutes ago would have been the time for a beautiful Pacific Coast Sunset and just like the last two nights that was when the downpour started. But you know what, it is rainy season and yet we have has mostly full days of sunshine with either late afternoon or evening rain, so very fortunate for the tour! We visited three more really nice houses today, one near Quepos with an infinity pool and deck overlooking the Pacific, just not what I can afford – see bottom photo. Then at Bejuco Beach we saw two really nice houses in a gated subdivision of 127 lots with 73 houses already built with every amenity possible. Several are for sale at $189,000 up into 5 and 6 hundreds, most with private pools plus the community pool, etc. Again I can’t afford to buy there and probably not rent, though it is closer with a few smaller ones for rent at $800 to $900 a month plus utilities. It is a two hundred meter walk to the empty beach below which is also where the folks are riding horses. We are staying in a nice hotel right on the beach in the quaint Key West like town of Jaco where we also had a gourmet lunch at the marina. And note that last night my connection was slow and I started reducing photos to 800 pixels on long side, but you don’t need to be stealing my photos anyway!  🙂  But ask if you want to use one and I’ll send the larger file. Time for dinner! Adios!

Playa Bejuco with miles of empty beach and it has the
very nice gated community of upscale modern houses.

While at Bejuco Beach some horses came by.

Our very nice hotel is on the beach where I walked today
in this quaint seaside town of Jaco – nice but more touristy
than Bejuco!
This shot is from the deck of a very nice house with infinity pool
overlooking the Pacific, between Quepos and Jaco.