Thursday, July 18, 2013


El Cuco's main street leading down to the beach during rush hour.
After cooling off in the mountains, it was time to get back to the beach before heading south to the volcanoes of Nicaragua. Plus, Kip's brother Todd had joined us for a couple weeks and he really needed to learn to surf.

A kid about to smash an egg on Todd's head.
We headed to El Salvador's eastern beaches and the town of El Cuco, famous for wide swaths of sand, nesting sea turtles, and the nearby surf break Las Flores

Cuco would be our last stop in El Salvador, and probably our last time (and Todd's first) riding the country's bone-rattling local bus system, so we made the most of it. 

At the San MIguel bus terminal, after a three-hour slog from San Salvador (we chickens allowed inside the bus), we convinced a cheeky young Salvadorena to crack some cascarones, eggs filled with confetti, on the head of an un-suspecting gringo named Todd. Both were terribly amused.

After an hour waiting at the station, we hopped a local bus from San Miguel to El Cuco. 

As is typical, the already full bus stopped every few hundred feet to pick up additional passengers, who simply have to wave an arm from the side of the road to get a ride.
Todd and Kip prepping to surf.
"How many people are gonna fit on this bus?" Todd asked. Great question.

As we crammed together a little closer, allowing for six women in starched nurse uniforms to squeeze past, Kip gave him the standard answer -- "at least one more, brother, always one more."

An hour later, the bus pulled into El Cuco, a dusty, oceanside town frequented on weekends by vacationing Salvadorenos and most other times by international surfers.

Besides a few food stalls by the water, there's not much for visitors to see. The main attraction is a long walk or short pick-up ride over rolling hills to the famous surf break of Las Flores.  

As seen in the photo below, the waves were a bit large for us, so we surfed the waves right in front of our eco-friendly hotel, La Tortuga Verde.

Yes, Todd learned to surf. Skip one photo for the visual proof.

No, it's not Todd or Kip surfing. But Kip did take the photo.
Yes, Todd caught a few waves. Mission accomplished.
We squeezed in a little fun at sunset. 
For some reason, Liz loves beach cows. The herd of adolescents above was even more fun than Zanzibar, she says. 

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