Trip up to Nicaragua

Trip Start Jan 31, 2008
Trip End May 11, 2011

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Flag of Nicaragua  ,
Saturday, April 4, 2009

After we crossed the border, we saw the wind turbines while we were driving to Granada. They were really neat, humoungus! We drove a long way on a road as straight as an arrow. After we drove for about 2 hours more, we turned off towards Granada. The road to Granada was more twisty and crowded. It had lots of potholes. We arrived at Casa San Fransisco and the sun was just setting as we pulled in. We ate dinner at the hotel and then we went for a short swim in the dark, I was a little scared, in the pool at night. We didn't go exploring the next day, other than our favourite restaurants and book stores. We enjoyed the pool, the TV and the Internet at the hotel. One of our favourite restaurants for lunch is called the Garden Cafe.

We liked the brightly coloured chicken buses. One day we drove to Volcan Masaya. At the bottom is a really good visitors center. It had lots of models and maps. We drove up to the top and looked into the smoking crater. It was very deep and the smoke stunk! Later we went on a night tour of the volcano. It was a little spooky inside the lava tube. There were thousands of bats! We had to wear hard hats and carry gas masks in case the sulpher smell got too strong, but we didn't really need them.

After the first visit to Volcan Masaya we went to a National Park called Chocoyero. We saw all sorts of things, rubber trees, Howler monkeys, Parakeets, Owls, snakes (in jars) and lots of strange trees. There was a canyon with steep walls where the Parakeets lived and there was a waterfall there too. After this park we returned to Masaya for the night tour. All of the park staff and guides that helped us that day were really nice.

The next day we headed back to Costa Rica. We drove from the border to Lake Arenal, we drove a long way around the lake and found the town of El Castillo. It is a great place to see the Lava flows at night from Arenal. Unfortunatley we had a lot of clouds, so we couldn't see much. The next day we hiked around Arenal National Park and we had lots of good views of the lava flows. We took a two kilometer hike to an old lava flow that happened in the late 1990's and we sat on the lava rock and watched the rock and ash fall down the side of the volcanoe. Arenal is one of the most active volcanoes in the world. After that we drove from La Fortuna, through Jaco to Quepos where we decided to stay overnight because it was getting dark. We stayed at La Colina hotel. It had a great swimming pool with a waterfall. It was very warm there. We had a great breakfast at the hotel and then headed for home. The road from there is dirt, but it is getting a lot better. I was so glad to be home, but it was a fun trip.
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