Coffee, Volcano, Animals and Waterfalls

Trip Start Oct 19, 2010
Trip End Jan 12, 2011

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Flag of Costa Rica  , Province of Alajuela,
Sunday, October 24, 2010

We had a memorable day today.  Even Dave, who isn't a person who likes tours (too much time spent on cruise ships as a musician) enjoyed it a lot as well as the 3 of us girls. An added bonus was the number of people from different countries in our group...Aruba, El Salvador, Atlanta GA (ok not so original), Venezuela and a guy who works for the UN and speaks about 6 languages, etc...  We have met a few people from the US actually, but didn't for the first few days here.
We had an all day adventure, started with a coffee plantation for breakfast and learned about how coffee beans are grown.  We then headed to Volcan Poas.  On the "bus" ride up the mountain to see the volcano, we saw many cool things.  There were several colorful ox carts (Costa Rica is well known for these) and their owners in the road along the way so we stopped briefly to check it out.  Other cars on the road just drive around you when you stop... it seems like most drivers are pretty  nice.   We saw a sloth up in a tree in the middle of  hairpin turn... guess they can sleep anywhere!  It had some markings like stripes on it.  Miranda was pretty excited to see a little bit of the ball of fur up there.  Again, we just stopped in the middle of the road briefly and other cars zoomed around us.

The weather changed pretty quickly farther up the mountain... went from humid and warm to cool and foggy.  Saw lots of bikers in fancy jerseys... that was a surprise, thought I was in Seattle for a second.

We arrived at the volcano and got lucky to see it fairly clearly.  Once we were there for a few minutes though, the clouds came in and then lifted a bit. There is a lake made from rain that is always in the center of the crater.  The ph of the water is .5 and acidic, on some days the smell of sulfur is pungent and so you can only stay for 20min... didn't smell too bad at all this morning.  This volcano was active exactly 100 years ago, according to our guide - Will.  Actually his name is Wuilding... a local that actually been to Seattle and Tacoma with friends.  He even went to Alaska.
This guide was so helpful that he even carried both of our daughters at some point of the day trip.  Yes, he got a good sized tip from us.

Next we headed down the mountain to get some fresh strawberries that they farm at higher altitudes.  Also, they have many cows higher up so they make their own cheeses, I tried some - very tasty.  We did get strawberries and I have to say that the ones from our own backyard are even better.

We arrived at the park where the animals and waterfalls were and it was pouring rain... we all got soaked even with rain coats on.  We met some friendly toucans first and then moved on to other animals.  Sydney and Miranda loved seeing the monkeys!

The butterfly exhibit was fun, there were lots of blue morphos.  Will add one of these photos later, forgot to add it this time. 

The waterfalls reminded me of Cascade mountains waterfalls back home, but surrounded by amazing tropical fauna and it wasn't cold :)

We are pretty lucky the girls did well today, it was a long day!  About 7am until 4:30 when we got back here.  Whew.

Well, going to turn in now. The girls went to bed early thank goodness, they still really need to catch up on their sleep.

Buenos Noches,

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Sarah Murfin on

All the photos are so colorful! I'm excited to see more.
I'm glad you are enjoying yourselves, talk to you later.

Connie on

what wonderful pictures! i'm so glad to see everyone happy and healthy. looking forward to seeing you all soon!

Carrrol Karlsgodt on

Oops, I think that I just left this message on another blog message. Sorry. Thanks for the update and the wonderful pictures. We got our shots taken care of yesterday. We love you lots

Jean Kirby on

Christi: HAPPY BIRTHDAY on the 27th. This will be a birthday to remember I'm sure. I'll be thinking of you and t his is the only way I know to tell you. Enjoy everything you can while you're there and send us lots of pictures so we can share it with you. Lots of love Grandma Kirby

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