Costa Rica - Part 2

So we spent a couple days in Tortuguero, and these were by far the busiest days of our vacation. We’re talking 4:45 a.m. wake-up calls. Seriously, before it was lunch time we’d have gone on at least two or three excursions. Every second of it was amazing.
Mawamba Park is situated right in the middle of the forests—it was the most…rustic? organic? of the places we stayed in Costa Rica. We had cabins and they did have electricity, so it wasn’t that out there as far as accommodations. Except I gave up showering after the first day, because the shower pressure was impossibly high and there were only two temperature options: scalding hot and Antarctic cold.
Here is a picture of my bed: (on any given moment there was something crawling on it…but at least it wasn’t as bad as the flies in Vermont (who knew?))
As for excursions, we took a lot of boat rides, since the resort and all the other resorts are situated on the water. Morning and afternoon boat rides each resulted in sightings of different animals, which was really cool to see. We got really close to some animals and went deep into the rain forest. One of the first excursions was a walking path of the rainforest. Surprisingly, that did not produce as many animal sightings as did the boat tours.
Here are just a few of the wild* animals spotted:

 Caiman:
*The word “wild” is subject to interpretation:
Monkeys!
This is either a Spider Monkey or a Howler Monkey. In Tortuguero, we only saw two of the four types of monkey species found in Costa Rica. Luckily, by the end of the trip we spotted them all!
Frogs, poisonous
I love it when animals pose….

After one of our trips, our guide dropped us off at the main town area, home to the biggest gift shop in Tortuguero and the best coconut milk ever. I think one of the things that surprised me most about Costa Rica was the fact that there were literally no trash bins anywhere. At home, we can’t walk 500 feet without there being one, yet we still manage to be really dirty. Anyway, I loved how Costa Rica was so conscious of its consumption, recycling and sustainability efforts.
Wish we had more of these at home…
And then we walked along the beach back to Mawamba.
A really nice sign at the entrance of the beach:
 (Everything is possible)
And the beach was so beautiful and clean.
One day we went to a butterfly garden, which I was extremely excited about. See, for my senior project a couple friends and I researched and designed a butterfly garden that my school could potentially build. It was a nice surprise for us when the senior gift turned out to be funding for this butterfly garden. Butterfly gardens will always hold a special place in my heart.

Also, one of the very first animals I saw in Costa Rica (besides the stray dogs) was a big, beautiful blue butterfly, just fluttering past our bus when we were on our way out of the city and into the forest. I saw a lot of those in the butterfly garden! But unfortunately they are a species that moves a lot--I couldn’t get a single good photo!



Haha…one our way back from the butterfly garden we ran into a couple of these, mere feet from a friend’s room! We really were in the middle of nature.
We were sad to leave Tortuguero, but excited to have access to a shower with a better temperature range. When it was finally time to travel to Manuel Antonio, we first when on a boat to the “airport,” which can be seen below.
And then our plane came! Six passengers total with a 25 lb. luggage limit per person!
The inside of the plane…
I have to admit, it was a bit scary. I’ve never ridden in such a small plane before, and we were ascending right over the ocean….
Our last views of Tortuguero:


More later xx

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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Costa Rica - Part 2

So we spent a couple days in Tortuguero, and these were by far the busiest days of our vacation. We’re talking 4:45 a.m. wake-up calls. Seriously, before it was lunch time we’d have gone on at least two or three excursions. Every second of it was amazing.
Mawamba Park is situated right in the middle of the forests—it was the most…rustic? organic? of the places we stayed in Costa Rica. We had cabins and they did have electricity, so it wasn’t that out there as far as accommodations. Except I gave up showering after the first day, because the shower pressure was impossibly high and there were only two temperature options: scalding hot and Antarctic cold.
Here is a picture of my bed: (on any given moment there was something crawling on it…but at least it wasn’t as bad as the flies in Vermont (who knew?))
As for excursions, we took a lot of boat rides, since the resort and all the other resorts are situated on the water. Morning and afternoon boat rides each resulted in sightings of different animals, which was really cool to see. We got really close to some animals and went deep into the rain forest. One of the first excursions was a walking path of the rainforest. Surprisingly, that did not produce as many animal sightings as did the boat tours.
Here are just a few of the wild* animals spotted:

 Caiman:
*The word “wild” is subject to interpretation:
Monkeys!
This is either a Spider Monkey or a Howler Monkey. In Tortuguero, we only saw two of the four types of monkey species found in Costa Rica. Luckily, by the end of the trip we spotted them all!
Frogs, poisonous
I love it when animals pose….

After one of our trips, our guide dropped us off at the main town area, home to the biggest gift shop in Tortuguero and the best coconut milk ever. I think one of the things that surprised me most about Costa Rica was the fact that there were literally no trash bins anywhere. At home, we can’t walk 500 feet without there being one, yet we still manage to be really dirty. Anyway, I loved how Costa Rica was so conscious of its consumption, recycling and sustainability efforts.
Wish we had more of these at home…
And then we walked along the beach back to Mawamba.
A really nice sign at the entrance of the beach:
 (Everything is possible)
And the beach was so beautiful and clean.
One day we went to a butterfly garden, which I was extremely excited about. See, for my senior project a couple friends and I researched and designed a butterfly garden that my school could potentially build. It was a nice surprise for us when the senior gift turned out to be funding for this butterfly garden. Butterfly gardens will always hold a special place in my heart.

Also, one of the very first animals I saw in Costa Rica (besides the stray dogs) was a big, beautiful blue butterfly, just fluttering past our bus when we were on our way out of the city and into the forest. I saw a lot of those in the butterfly garden! But unfortunately they are a species that moves a lot--I couldn’t get a single good photo!



Haha…one our way back from the butterfly garden we ran into a couple of these, mere feet from a friend’s room! We really were in the middle of nature.
We were sad to leave Tortuguero, but excited to have access to a shower with a better temperature range. When it was finally time to travel to Manuel Antonio, we first when on a boat to the “airport,” which can be seen below.
And then our plane came! Six passengers total with a 25 lb. luggage limit per person!
The inside of the plane…
I have to admit, it was a bit scary. I’ve never ridden in such a small plane before, and we were ascending right over the ocean….
Our last views of Tortuguero:


More later xx

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