June 24, 2010

Our planned adventures in Costa Rica and Panama

One of the biggest things that attracted us to doing IVF out of the country is that in addition to getting a great price for the procedure, we would also be able to visit two amazing countries that we've never had the chance to experience. I'm sure many people would want to take it easy and relax during an IVF cycle, but for me, the busier I am, the better. I need whatever I can get to keep myself occupied so I don't stress about the cycle and how it's going.

Mr. CB and I are adventurous travelers and since it's just the two of us, it was easy to find great things to do in Costa Rica. I bought a Frommer's Costa Rica book and pretty much focused on three major attractions that were close enough to San Jose for us to travel to around our appointments.

The Chef Bud's Costa Rica/Panama Itinerary:

Day 1: Arrive in Costa Rica, pick up rental 4x4 ($385 for 11 days), and head directly to first monitoring appointment with Dr. Perez. After our appointment we are driving about 3 1/2 hours to Arenal, which is an active volcano. We're staying at the Arenal Observatory Lodge (cost per night $104), an ecolodge that offers lava views from your room!

Day 2-4: We'll be touring and hiking around Arenal. The lodge offers free guided hikes each morning, and horseback riding for $7! There is a waterfall nearby called La Fortuna Waterfall that we plan on hiking to, and we'll celebrate my birthday on July 3rd by whitewater rafting on the Rio Toro.

Day 4-7: On the morning of July 4th, we'll drive about 5 hours to Monteverde. Monteverde is known as the cloud forest, and is a huge ecological reserve. In Monteverde we plan to zipline and hike through the reserve during both the day and night (unless I chicken out at the thought of a nighttime hike!). We're staying at Pension Santa Elena, a hostel that has great reviews (and is only $45 a night!).

Day 7: We'll leave Monteverde and head back to San Jose for our afternoon appointment with Dr. Perez. Hopefully we'll have great news with lots of follicles and a thick lining! After the appointment, we are heading 2 hours southwest to Manuel Antonio.

Day 7-10: For the next 3 nights we'll be staying at Verde Mar ($70 per night), and exploring Quepos and Manuel Antonio National Park. This is Costa Rica's smallest national park, but one of the most diverse with rainforest, beaches and coral reefs. By this point, there is a chance that I will be feeling a little uncomfortable so we don't have many plans other than to lay around on the beach and see the famous monkeys around Quepos. Mr. CB wants to surf, and I'll stick to taking pictures.

Photo Credit

Day 10-11: We go back to San Jose on July 10 for our final monitoring appointment. At this point, Dr. Perez will schedule our egg retrieval date. For these 2 nights we're staying at Out of Bounds B&B ($80 a night) which I am so excited about because it looks super cute. We don't have many plans for San Jose, other than dinner out with Holly and her family. I "met" Holly online through Tracie (who went to CR in May for IVF), and Holly is doing IVF with Dr. Perez as well. We've been emailing and I can't wait to meet her!

Day 12: Off to Panama!!! Once we land in Panama, we have a driver meeting us to take us to our apartment. I knew a lot of our time in Panama would be spent relaxing and on bed rest following egg retrieval and egg transfer, so I wanted to have all the comforts of home. I found a great apartment on vrbo.com, and we'll be staying at Posada del Rey ($770 for the week), which is right near the clinic I'll be going to for ER/ET. Panama City reminds me of New York City.

Photo Credit

Day 12-19: We don't have anything specific planned during our time in Panama because we don't know yet when ER and ET will be. We plan to see the Panama Canal and go out to a nice dinner to celebrate our 3rd wedding anniversary on July 14th. Other than that, we're going to play it by ear! We fly home July 19th, hopefully with some great embies on board!

Photo Credit


The Domestic Princess said...

Wow, that looks amazing. Good Luck and I hope you come back with a 'souvenir'

Dandelion Bud said...

Keep in mind that depending on how you stim, you might not feel remotely capable of doing half of that stuff. Depending on the temperature and how much water you can carry (it's extremely important to stay hydrated during an IVF cycle), I can almost guarantee you're not going to be up for hiking and bouncing around on horseback... not so sure about that either. Whitewater rafting can go either way, but if the rapids are really bad, and you fall out.... any risk of abdominal trauma is a big deal while stimming.

With only 13 follicles, just WORKING was a lot for me. At one point, I accidentally bumped into something and it hit me in the lower abdomen and I thought i was going to die.

Don't underestimate how you might feel on stims. No way would my RE have approved half of that during a cycle. I understand wanting to see a country you've never been to before, but I think you're planning too much strenuous activity.

Chef Bud said...

We're planning on whitewater rafting my second day of stimming, so I'm thinking I will be fine that early. Obviously, nothing is set in stone...if I don't feel up to something I won't do it. It seems like everyone has a totally different experience of how they feel when they stim, so I'll just be flexible and see how it goes.

Dandelion Bud said...

everyone might have a different experience of how they feel, but the risk of ovarian rupture and ovarian torsion with strenuous activity doesn't vary.

IMO - it's just not worth the risk of losing an ovary.

The only exercise I was allowed to do during stims was walking.

Worry Bud said...

GL Chef Bud - your trip sounds like it'll be amazing & I am praying that you guys have a little souvenir to bring back too!!

Sunflower Bud said...

Good luck!

Canopy tour Costa Rica said...

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Flora Bud said...

GL Chef Bud!!! I can not wait to hear all about it. Just be careful, if you feel tired or anything do not risk it.


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