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Travel Central America: A Glimpse of Costa Rica
Creative Use of Mangrove Roots
Costa Rican Masks
We took a captivating tour through the mangrove swamps, where we were able to see crocodiles, numerous bird species and an anteater which was perched high up in the canopy. On the way back to the hotel we passed by this craft store. It was amazing to see the detail, facial expressions, and the use of the roots for hair and beards on these masks. The indigenous Boruca Indians are famous for a different type of distinctive mask shown in the YouTube video below.
Montaverde Cloud Forest Hanging Bridges
The Monteverde Cloud Forest's beginnings were in 1951 when 11 Quaker families, who were avoiding the draft moved from the U.S. to Monteverde to graze their cattle. They preserved the rain forest above their land and the preserve has grown to approximately 26,000 acres today.
Mondeverde is a prime Ecotourism center. It is home to around 400 bird species including the famed resplendent quetzal. It is also well known for three toed sloths, howler and cupuchin monkeys, butterflies and hummingbirds. The cloud forest offers varied activities including hanging bridges, zip-lines, reptile, insect and butterfly houses and nearby horseback riding.
The Arenal Volcano has spewed ash and lava since 1968 until 2010 when its activity decreased dramatically. We saw some steam and smoke on our visit but no lava. The view however, is quite majestic.
The Springs Resort & Spa
There are beautiful hot springs in the area. We attended one with a lavish system of pools with varied water temperatures and a colder spring fed pool located down a meandering path. It is well worth your while if you come from Guanacaste on the Coast to take the time to relax your weary body after jouncing on rough roads for quite a few hours.
Search the Treetops for Wildlife
Costa Rica is rich in biodiversity. Plants, birds and animals flourish in this tropical paradise. Bird lovers, orchid enthusiasts, botanists and nature lovers will fall in love with the place. There are travel agencies that cater to your particular hobby or life-style, whether you are an adventurer or someone who is happy to enjoy looking at the beautiful countryside.
Private Gazebo overlooking the Bay
Alternatives to eating at the Hotel
Although we had a really nice hotel and the food was good, we chose to save our money for exploring the country and decided to eat at local establishments. One of our favorites was a little place overlooking the bay. The food was simple but good and we felt that we were able to experience Costa Rican cuisine. Often we were able to sit at a private gazebo, and watch the hummingbirds, parakeets, and mot mot birds from our table.
Sunset on the Beach in Guanacaste
Although I was only able to spend a week in this Paradise it is a place I would love to see again and again. I hope that this brief glimpse of Costa Rica will encourage you to plan a vacation there. It is a place where you can relax and enjoy the nature and diversity that you are certain to find. Thank you for reading my first hub. I hope that you will follow my hubpages in the future and post a comment below.