Our First Week in Costa Rica, by Ailsa
20.02.2015 - 24.02.2015 20 °C
We left Il Castillo by river boat at 5 am. It took about three hours and one more boat but we finally arrived at the Costa Rican border and got in line and waited. And waited. Then we took two more buses to get to La Fortuna and found a hostel (a PURPLE hostel) to spend the night. There was a grocery store nearby which for the first time since we entered Central America stocked a bunch of brands that we get at home in Canada. They had nice olives, non-uht-milk, good gluten-free pasta and Welch's grape juice. How exciting! We ran up and down the aisles like crazy people and then we had a feast!
The next morning we ate cookies for breakfast (unheard of!) and hoped on a jeep-boat-jeep to get us across Lake Arenal and on to Monteverde. We could see the volcano on the side of the lake.
There are loads of adventure activities to do here. But maybe most exciting for us was meeting new friends. Daisy and Millie from Devonshire were so much fun to play crazy games with and also to sit and watch the sloth move very slowly on the tree behind our hotel. They had been travelling for one month longer than we had and we quickly became friends! 🇬🇧
We went zip lining with the Original Canopy Tour and we got to do a Tarzan swing and climb inside a hollowed-out, ancient fig tree. It was so much fun. We could very clearly hear a hard to spot bird, called a quetzal, but we could never find where it was.
The next day we went to the Reptile and Amphibian Centre and got to see lots of snakes, frogs, turtles and spiders up close. Some of them were very poisonous. See if you can spot the frog in the next photo. (If you cannot see it, I will leave a hint just below the photo - but no peeking!).
(It is hiding just under one of the leaves, but you HAVE to look very closely)
That night we went on a night tour to the Children's Eternal Rainforest.
We saw lots of different animals including: a tarantula, a porcupine, a sloth, a coati, a side-striped-palm-pit-viper, a bunch of different ants and a headlight click bug - no kidding, that is its real name. Our guide told us the amazing story behind this part of the rainforest. This reserve was started when children in Sweden in the 1980s sold chocolates and sweets to raise money to buy land in Costa Rica to preserve for the plants and animals. When they started it cost $100 an acre. He told us it can now cost close to $1,000,000 to buy an acre near Monteverde. But they managed to buy over 55,000 acres and it is the largest privately owned reserve in Costa Rica. I thought it was really amazing that children could do something so important by just raising money a bit at a time. Check it out: http://www.acmcr.org
We are now heading to Playa Grande on the Pacific coast for some sun and time on the beach. ☀️