Costa Rica's best bars are inviting respites in which to sip on ice cold beverages and soak up some of the pura vida culture. A walking tour of the capital city of San Jose yields tiny dive bars every other block, but the classic bar Chelles stays open all night for drinking and eating. On the other side of the valley in Escazu the modern wine bar at Tintos y Blancos draws an upscale crowd to its patio for people watching, tapas, and a wine selection unheard of elsewhere in the country. Costa Rica's Craft Brewing Company, the country's first micro-brewery, offers free flights of seven beer samples on its weekly tour, a stop that could substitute for a bar en route to or from Cartago, Costa Rica's original capital. Watch the sun set over the Caribbean coast at the Lazy Mon at Stanfords, and stay for happy hour cocktails, love music, and ping pong. Costa Rican legend has it that if you find yourself lost on the road after a night of drinking, be on the lookout for El Cadejo, a big shaggy black dog with red eyes that is said to be a good omen, follow him home and his spirit, who is also said to be devilish, will protect you from harm.
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