New Years Day
Trip Start Dec 15, 2009
92Trip End Aug 27, 2010
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We woke up at 6:30am on Tuesday morning to hear the rain pummeling the roof of our little villa and wondered how the rain would affect our plans for ziplining which we had booked for 9am? Perhaps it's just a passing storm and will clear/burn-off before 9am? By 8:15 it was still pouring, and Luis (the kindly hotel manager) phoned and was able to postpone our booking to the following morning. Tuesday turned out to be a slow and uneventful day. Wednesday was not.
After our regular Gran Arenal breakfast of eggs, gallo pinto, toast, fruit, etc it was off to Ecoglide to try our hand at ziplining aka a Canopy Tour. For those of you not familiar with this, let me explain how it works; First a guide straps (very tightly) a harness around ones waist and thighs, the same kind of harness that is worn for rock-climbing
Thursday was New Years Eve and what better way to celebrate than go and see what Mother Nature has to offer in the way of fireworks….it was off to hike on Arenal Volcano, a volcano that has been active for 41 years following a period of dormancy of 500-700 years. En route to the volcano we stopped several times to see/photo wildlife and were lucky to see several toucans and a white-faced monkey (this was a real highlight for Alex who had been hoping to see one ever since we arrived in Costa Rica). On the volcano we hiked to a waterfall among the lava flow from the initial 1968 eruption, learned about many plant species in the rainforest, visited the museum (complete with seismograph of current volcano activity which was thankfully very smooth) and visited the observation deck.
After the volcano it was off to Baldi hot springs – a collection of twenty five different pools at varying temperatures fed by hot thermal springs. Each pool is secluded by plants or rock features and has different attributes. One has waterslides, some have waterfalls, there are jacuzzis, cold plunge pools, and a couple have swim up bars. We had heard mixed reports and weren’t sure what to expect, but we had a blast. It was much less crowded and much less commercialized than we expected – would definitely recommend a visit.
Although our “package” included drop off at our hotel, we decided to stop in town at the park and gather with the locals there to ring in the new year
Tomorrow we move on to spend a couple of days in a tree-house…we’re hoping for more monkeying around and maybe to find a tree frog or two! 'Til next time…. Pura Vida.