A Travellerspoint blog

Costa Rica


Super Bowl in Espanol



After the initial posting of yesterday's blog, I realized that some additions and corrections needed to be made. The changes were made after the first thirty readers had already read the blog. Sorry for any inconvenience.

Yesterday we got some good views of Arenal and hiked to the La Fortuna Waterfall. An incredible sight. The steep hike down and up from the valley floor cost me five pounds, maybe more. Kryss was like an olympic champion up and down the hill. After the climb it was cerveza time at one of the local restaurants. While we were enjoying a late lunch and beer, two water buffalo were being lead down the main street. Needless to say, this stopped traffic. Not a common site in La Fortuna. I took the restaurant owner's picture on one of the beasts and he bought us a round. Pura Vida!

We watched the Super Bowl with Spanish speaking broadcasters. Learned a few more words, [i]el passo incompleto, passo perfecto, completo.[i] Other than that it was pretty much greek. Kyrss picked the winning team and won our bet.

For those of you that know "flat Stanley", (google him if you don't know about him) he has made an appearance on our trip for one of our grand nieces. Every so often he will be seen in various places in our photo file. If you need him for your kids, grandkids, etc., feel free copy the pictures.

Tomorrow we are leaving for Panama. A 3.5 hour drive in the morning to San Jose and then a short flight to Panama City. We will be staying in Casco Viejo (the old section of Panama City) for about three days while we figure out where we want to go. Bocas del Toros is on the list but nothing else at this time. We are considering renting a car since the roads in Panama are much better than CR roads.

The pictures are of the La Fortuna Waterfall, Arenal Volcano (one from our patio the other from in town) and flat Stanley in the jungle.

Adios Costa Rica....Hola Panama!

Posted by rhislop 12:52 Archived in Costa Rica Tagged waterfalls costa rica arenal Comments (0)

Ylang Ylang to Arenal

from the beach to the mountains

overcast 80 °F


Adios to healthy food, hola big steak...that's my story. Kryss on the other hand didn't want to leave. As the Range Rover bounced along the beach taking us to a van in Montezuma Kyrss said, "I love it here, I just love it here". If you only had a week for a vacation and needed to totally chill out this would be the place. The peacefulness will make you forget the pressures at home. However, the last couple of nights the sounds of the crashing waves were like cannons going off.During the day we watched surfers running passed our beach to another beach about 20 minutes away to ride the wild surf. Even the waves hitting the beach in front of YY looked pretty huge to me.

We rode a van from Montezuma for about an hour to the ferry. We walked on the ferry carrying our bags along with at least another hundred people, Ticos, Americans, Canadians, and a few intitled children from who knows where. Their parents probably sent them to CR so they wouldn't have to put up with them for the winter. The ride was unadventurous and we read our Kindle's. A young Tico mother had never seen a Kindle and between my elementary spanish and sign language she understood that it was a "biblioteca" library with many "libros" books in it. She was totally amazed and it was fun sharing with her.

Another van picked us up in Puntaranes and took us to Arenal. We stopped before we left town picked up a few cervesas for the road. Drinking beer at 10am, we are on vacation. Four hours later,as we approached La Fortuna, the town Arenal towers over, there was a break in the clouds and we saw the top of the volcano. The tour books say that only 50% of the visitors to La Fortuna see Arenal. I guess we are lucky because we've been able to see it yesterday and today.

The buzz in La Fortuna is that Will Smith and Bruce Willis are in town to film another MIB 3 movie. We haven't seen them but I'll put them on my wildlife photo list if we spot them.

As for the pictures. The spider is a Golden Orb. They are all around on the jungle plants, we watched one the other day eat a nickel size butterfly. They are about 3 to 4 inches in diameter. The lizard is just one of many we saw every day at YY. The jungle picture, if you look close, you can see the roof of our dome "colibri" which is hummingbird in espanol.

Oh yeah...last night I had a NY Steak, rare, with baked potatoes, plantens, and JW Red. Kryss had gazapacho, a raw cold soup, and a salad with vino roja! Always the carnavore and the vegatarian.

More on Arenal later...hasta luego amigos!

Posted by rhislop 12:10 Archived in Costa Rica Tagged mountains volcano costa rica montezuma arenal ylang Comments (0)

Ylang Ylang

more on the turtles

overcast 77 °F


Our friend David N.in NC recommended YY to us. A very nice place, probably the most relaxing spot we've been to so far. The tours and activities at the this resort are many that we've already done, so lots of beach time, hammock tours and chil-axing. The healthy food menu has been excellent and I've made it five days without a cheeseburger. Tomorrow night or during the Super Bowl it will be on the menu.

We walked the beach the other day and stopped at the turtle rescue hatchery. While speaking with the volunteers we learned that they had one more release before a new season of egg planting begins. This month turtle will come a shore at night, bury their eggs and return to the sea. The volunteers watch the beach, rescue the eggs and bring them to hatchery were they are protected until they hatch. I think they said 45-60 days later. The day they hatch they're returned to the sea. One of the volunteers a young woman from Boulder, CO (another CO connection) is spending a year here before going to college at SDSU. Good for her.

What is interesting to me is that my brother John is volunteering his time in NC to stop the commercial gill net fisherman that are killing all the turtles along the coast of NC. NC is the only state on the eastern shore that permits gill net fishing along it's coastline. Here in CR volunteers are working 24/7 to protect the turtles from their natural enemies, CR poachers, and the giant commercial fishing ships that spread nets five miles wide across the oceans and take everything. When you eat canned tuna, you could be eating dolphin, turtle, etc. No politics here just an expression of concern. If you feel like donating to an organization that is fighting the gill net commercial fishing in NC and helping the group in CR go to www.asvocr.org/english. Click on the appropriate links. They are also on Facebook.

Today is our last day here at YY maybe a hike to a waterfall....

Posted by rhislop 04:55 Archived in Costa Rica Tagged turtles costa rica montezuma ylang Comments (0)

Drop outs and Capitalists

counter-culture & beach weddings

sunny 80 °F


This little place of heaven, Ylang Ylang Resort, is about half a mile down the beach from Montezuma, CR. There are more dreads, tats, tie dyed rags, and body punctures than in a carnival phreak show. We are told that at night the burning of the ganja weed floats the whole town. There seems to be a collection of Ticos, college drop outs, burnouts, and temporary tourists living here. Not much to see or buy. However, we have to go there tomorrow to replenish our adult beverage supply and get a few room snacks.

The macaws and monkeys are all around our dome. We can hear the call of the macaws but they remain unseen in the tree tops. The monkeys on the other hand show up in the morning and around cocktail hour, entertaining us with their swinging and running through the trees. We spotted at white nosed coati yesterday, no picture yet. It looks like a house cat with a long white nose.

Yesterday afternoon there was a wedding on the beach, a young couple from Vermont. A beautiful sight, the resort really made a nice presentation for the newly weds. Shortly after the wedding a turtle rescue group released about 24 baby turtles back to the ocean. Costa Rica is working with volunteers and various wildlife organizations to help save the turtle population. There is a black market in CR for turtle eggs and many Ticos would rather sell the eggs than sustain life. The baby turtles released yesterday have a 1 to 1000 chance of making it to reproduce more eggs. Thank you to the volunteers.

And a special thank you to all of you that are taking the time to read our blog. We are averaging about 85 hits per day. Your interest inspires me and keeps my mind creative. The current photos are from cell phone, unable to download from my camera from here. The towel monkey is a creation of the room service crew, hanging from a fan cord. The other two are the pool view and a beach view from Ylang Ylang.

Todo Tuanis

Posted by rhislop 05:28 Archived in Costa Rica Tagged turtles costa rica montezuma ylang Comments (1)

Drake Bay...reflections

Ylang Ylang...first impressions

overcast 80 °F

The Drake Bay Wilderness Resort is truly off the beaten path. A special thanks to our friend Steve G. in Grand Junction, CO for recommending this resort. The tranquility of the surroundings with mother nature´s extra added touch makes this place a very good memory. The staff was outstanding, mostly related one way or another, our cabins were always clean, the food delicious, the tours outstanding and of course a great place for chil-axing. If you need Vegas this is not your venue. If you want to get away from the everyday world, forget about everything, this is the spot. We'll be back.

After a water taxi ride to a taxi on the beach, to the Drake Bay airport,we boarded a eleven person single engine plane to San Jose. After a short wait we transfered to a 22 seat twin engine plane for our flight to Tambor. Another taxi and a hour later we were checking into Ylang Ylang.

When we got to our dome, Kryss cried. In Fiji it would be called a bure, here it is a dome. Sightly up a hill, about 50 feet above sea level, through the jungle looking to the beach. A beautiful view. YY specializes in natural healthy foods, chicken, fish, vegan, raw, sushi and no beef, but they´ve got a full bar. No Famous Grouse, but I´m getting by on Johnny Walker Red Label. If I need a cheeseburger, it´s just a ten minute walk into Montezuma.

Last night at sunset there were at least a dozen white faced monkeys swing and scampering on the vines and palms surrounding our dome.

A few issues with the local internet spot getting pictures loaded. Will try again on the next posting.

Pura Vida!

Posted by rhislop 12:05 Archived in Costa Rica Tagged costa rica bay montezuma drake ylang Comments (0)

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