Today I wanted to post a smaller blog on the city of San Luis.
There are two main cities that people on the CIEE campus frequent often. They are Santa Elena and San Luis. We visit the tourist town of Santa Elena more often, as it is way more developed, housing supermarkets, restaurants, and places to go out to on the weekends. Santa Elena is about a 25-minute bus ride from campus, and there is free public transportation between campus and Santa Elena a few times a day. I will cover Santa Elena in a future blog post.
Although the other, closer town to CIEE is San Luis. San Luis is about a 25 to 30-minute walk downhill from campus, while the way back is a straight uphill climb. Although there isn't much to do in San Luis, after living in it during my time in my homestay, I have found it to be a quaint and enjoyable place to frequent and would like to share why I enjoy it so much.
Firstly, the walk down to the center of town is incredible. While the steep descent or climb can be daunting and exhausting, the views that you will see on the walk are stunning. Especially later into the afternoon when the sun is setting behind the mountains. Also, on the way down, you will pass a few places. There is the "Pulperia," which is a local shop with a wide variety of products, the local primary school, and you can stop by William's house, where he has a million-dollar view and sells his incredible homemade ice cream. Once you arrive at the center of San Luis, it is comprised of three main parts. There is a local playground that also houses some valuable workout equipment. Secondly, there is a local cemetery.
Lastly, the main attraction in San Luis is the community center. Here there are many activities, and fun events hosted that I have loved to attend. Although personally, my two favorite attractions are the Zumba classes and the farmers market. Every Friday night, Marta (if you don't remember, she is my host parents' daughter!) holds a rigorous, nice hour-long, cheap Zumba class for anyone that wants to attend. I had only done Zumba once before I came to Costa Rica, but now I am hooked and attend whenever I can. Then every Saturday, they host a local farmers market within the community center. Here you can buy wares and local crafts from everyone who lives in San Luis. They offer exquisite, locally homemade Monteverde Soap and toiletries to popsicles to handmade jewelry. It is also always lovely to go down and catch up with my host parents as my host mom, Marielos, brings her wares to the market.
Although it is minimal and doesn't house many facilities, San Luis is beyond charming, and I always love visiting!