Frogs, Coffee, Chocolate, Zippity-do-dah-day

Trip Start Dec 29, 2012
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8
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Trip End Aug 15, 2013


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What I did
Sky Trek, The Frog Pond, Don Juan's Coffee Farm

Flag of Costa Rica  , Province of Limon,
Saturday, January 12, 2013

The second destination of our Around the World Trip was to a cute little mountain town located in the Mountains of Costa Rica. Monteverde is located at the top of the continental divide of Costa
Rica, in what is called a cloud forest. The temperatures here were quite a bit lower than on the Pacific Coast and a whole lot windier.  This place makes Lethbridge and the Crows Nest Pass look like a nice calm place with gentle breezes.  Often I found myself looking around for Dorothy and Toto.

 

So…where to start?  I guess the drive there was a bit of an adventure, so lets start with that.  We hired a private driver to take us up into the mountains.  It was about a 4-hour drive and I sure am glad it was a professional driving us there.  The last 45 km of the trip was ridiculous.  Many years ago I travelled to Maui with Pops (my dad) and we rented a car to make the drive to Hanna.  The “Road to Hanna” is hyped up as this crazy windy road going up to the mountain village of Hanna complete with t-shirts captioned “I survived the road to Hanna”.  Well, the goat track we had to go up to get to Monteverde put Hanna to shame.  There were some truly amazing vistas and view points but there were also some anxious moments and several nervous looks back to Michelle as we came perilously close to the cliffs and immanent drops to our certain death. 

 

Alas, we survived and arrived to our lodging for the next two nights, “Rustic Lodge”.  This place  was very cool.  Two brothers, Marcello
and Jose, completely built the whole place from scratch and did some amazing woodwork
creating a very warm and inviting atmosphere.  These two brothers were extremely gracious hosts welcoming us with fresh lemon drinks upon arrival and even sat down with us to go over some information about the town and some of the better sights, service providers, tours and
restaurants.  We relied on Caleb to translate as Marcello only spoke Spanish. 
He did a great job! They also made us some great breakfasts to start our
days off.

 

Shortly after getting unpacked and putting on some warmer clothes we made the 10 minute walk into town for some snacks (Caleb and Aiden were starving) and to get Michelle her Chai Latte (she was a bit frazzled after the drive) and then went to a very cool place called “The Frog Pond”.  Here a guide (David – what kind of a Spanish name is that?) took us into an insect room where we got to see some amazing displays of all these different bugs and butterflies from around the world.  Many of the big ugly ones were from countries we are visiting.  Yikes!!  Then we went into the “Frog Pond”.  This was like heaven for Caleb.  Incredible displays with lots of different Frogs, the largest being the “Chicken Eating Frog” (yes it eats chickens/chicks and is over a kilo) the smallest being the “Blue Jeans Frog” (one of the poison
dart frogs.  It was amazing to see all these different frogs in one place. Oh, and of course they had Caleb’s favorite, the Red Eyed Tree Frog.

 

The next morning we went to Sky Trek for our Zip Line adventure.  This is probably one of my
highlights so far.  Michelle booked all this from home and signed us up for the canopy walk, the gondola ride, and the zip line rides.  We started with Laura and the canopy walk.  It was a very nice walk with some very long suspension bridges through the canopy.  Unfortunately, after our experiences in Manuel Antonio and the amazing guide we had there, Dago, this just didn’t do
much for me.  It was a nice walk and the bridges were very high, so that was cool, but no wildlife.

 

After the canopy walk we got suited up in our helmets and harnesses (not the most comfortable things) for the zip lines.  A gondola took us up to the top of the
mountain and then 9 separate zip lines brought us back down.  The highest being 320 meters up, the longest being over 750 meters long and they say you can reach up to 75km / hour.  It was a blast.  There was LOTS OF YELLING AND SCREAMING as we came down.  About half the seniors from the Israel tour bus turned around after the 1st one.  Not us!!!

 

For our last day in Monteverde we went to Don Juan’s Coffee plantation for a tour.  It was a very interesting and informative tour and we got free samples of coffee, not only that, it was also a chocolate tour and we got to sample chocolate too.  So all hopped up on sugar and caffeine we were ready for our ride back down the goat track to San Jose.  Luckily the boys both crashed and slept for most of the ride down the mountain.

 









 

















 

So there you have it our last installment from Costa
Rica.  Caleb said today on the plane, I
think I’m going to miss Costa Rica.  I
think I will too.  The people and scenery
were amazing.  It is with sadness we say good-bye
to Costa Rica, but with anticipation we say "Hola" to Ecuador.

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Comments

viajamos
viajamos on

Finally, that boy got to see his frogs!
Sounds like it was sensory overload for him.

I'm curious if you can live off of coco beans :-) What an excursion that must have been. Solimar wants to go now, "If there's chocolate, there's a place to visit" is what I'm hearing now.

A bit of news from Calgary you might not be aware of, The hockey lockout is finaly over and the teams start a seven day hurry up camp for a 48 game in 99 day season today. Not sure how this is going to go over with the fans after such a long period of no hockey.

Oh, and it's still snowing.

Regards

Paul, Solimar and Jones

PS. Jones just made it into The Young Canadiens (Were so proud :-)

Arlene on

Wow -- this is amazing following your travels with the stories and pictures!! Thanks for sharing all of your fun adventures!!!!

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