Page 4 of kelleygirl Travel Blog Posts

We had another early start with coffee and stale German pastries, before heading to the lobby for our 8am pickup for our Sail-Snorkel-Rum-Punch-Lunch trip. We had arranged for the sailboat-lunch-snorkel cruise from the hotel the day before. A woman from the boat tour picked us up and drove us in her car to a beach in Playas del Coco where the sailboat was anchored off shore. The harbor, set in a secluded cove, was filled with other sailboats and fishing boats. A dingy soon came to shore to pick us up and carry us to the sailboat. We were the first to arrive but soon were joined by a French family of four, bringing us to only 7 of us on board. The seas were calm yet there was enough breeze to get us underway. We ... read more
Secluded snorkel cove and cave beach
Sailing the Gulf of Papagayo
Monkey Head Island

It was time to leave our spa hotel for Playa Hermosa but first: a must stop at the Rainforest Chocolate Tour in La Fortuna. We packed the car after our last wonderful buffet breakfast with a plan to head to Playa Hermosa, a good day’s drive with stops along the way. Our first stop was just outside of La Fortuna at the Rainforest Chocolate Tour. I had no idea what to expect but when you say chocolate and tour, I'm in! This was a last minute decision before leaving La Fortuna and we were really glad we went. We found that they are usually booked in advance but since we were doing the tour early in the morning there were just enough spots for us to join the first tour. We were a small group, there ... read more
Gustavo's assistant further grinds the precious chocolate
Chocolaty goodness on my spoon
A fun street vender in Tilaran

Today’s main attraction was a guided trip in the jungle. Oscar from Jacaranda Tours picked us up at the Manoa Resort at 7:45am for the Hanging Bridges Tour. It is always better to go early to see wildlife and birds and also to avoid the crowds, so although my girls might have wanted a slower pace, they did agreed on the early morning tours, even if they had to wolf down breakfast. We were whisked to the nearby park to begin our hike with Oscar. As we walked up and down the paved paths that carved out the various habitats he explained all the indigenous flora and fauna of this part of Costa Rica. We observed the parts of the native heliconias that feed the butterflies, a parade of leaf cutter ants, monkey ladder vines and ... read more
Our guide Oscar at the Hanging Bridges Tour
White Faced Capuchin Monkey
Nanku, La Fortuna

Sky Tram and Sky Trek Zipline! This zipline experience was the highlight of my trip to Costa Rica to celebrate my 70th birthday and what a trip it was! I couldn't wait to do this zipline, but one of my 40-something daughters was not so eager. After we finished she was glad she did. We booked our date and time for Sky Tram and Sky Trek with Viator weeks in advance which I recommend because this is very popular, at least in February. A van picked us up at 8:15am at the Hotel Arenal and we were soon off to zip! When we arrived at the Sky Trek Zipline a long line of people were being processed and informed about the risks involved and how to safely travel on the ziplines. (There are lockers available to ... read more
Riding the Sky Tram to the top
Views of Lake Arenal from the top platform at Sky Trek Zipline
Arenal Volcano from the base of Sky Trek Zipline

Early on our first morning we woke to see the breathtaking view outside our room of the colorful tropical garden with the impressive Arenal Volcano in the distance. Not having the luxury of time, we dressed quickly, ran down to the same resort restaurant for a very delicious buffet breakfast including freshly made omelets, yogurts, pastries, oatmeal, many local specialties, and my favorite, the “digestive juices” that changed each day. This morning, along with a hearty breakfast, we enjoyed a refreshing lemon-cucumber juice and excellent Costa Rican coffee. We ate our breakfast in the open air restaurant overlooking the volcano, gardens and lovely birds. With no time to lose we were soon dashing to the main entrance where we met Jose from Jacamar Tours for our first Costa Rican adventure. Jose was waiting for us at ... read more
The beginning of our Safari Float
Big open air kitchen at the local finca
Making coffee with a Costa Rican Chorreadore

On February 24th, my daughters and I all flew into Liberia (LIR) airport, Costa Rica from different locations: Colorado, New Hampshire and Florida, for a weeklong celebration of my turning 70 in June. We had rented a Hyundai Creta 4x2 automatic car through Adobe Car Rental, a local agency located a few miles from the LIR airport. This agency was recommended by Mytanfeet, a company written by a Costa Rican couple, that offers recommendations of places to go, tours and other valuable inside information. Since we arrived at different times from different locations my NH daughter and I who were first to arrive were able to leave the airport in the Adobe Car van to pick up our rental car (about a 3/4 hour process), in time to return with the car and anxiously wait for ... read more

North America » United States » Idaho » Coeur d'Alene July 15th 2018

8/7 Ellen had asked me what I would want to see on this leg of the trip and besides enjoying their company and seeing a bit of what Spokane had to offer I said, “we are so close to Idaho I would love to see Couer d’Alene”. The four of us left for Coeur d'Alene at 9am heading east, driving though golden rolling wheat fields and farmland. After an hour we arrived at the lake house of Jim and Ellen’s friends Jeff and Julie. Long time residents of Couer d’Alene, Jeff, a retired Pediatric Eye surgeon, and his wife Julie were happy to share their little piece of heaven with us. The quiet relaxed bay where their summer home is situated reminded me of my childhood on Lake Winnipesaukee on a hot hazy day. Rocky steps ... read more
Homes perched high above the lake need steep stairs to access the beach!
Floating home on Lake Couer d'Alene
A little home away from home on Lake Couer d'Alene

North America » United States » Washington » Spokane July 15th 2018

8/6 While preparing breakfast, Ellen and I watched hummingbirds and wild turkeys out of her kitchen window. I enjoyed all the wildlife but Ellen was not so fond of the turkeys and their mess. When Jim and Dave left to play golf, Ellen took me for a tour of Spokane. We began in an area of historic homes on a bluff that overlooks the city of Spokane. Cannon Hill Park is an historic district in Spokane that was once a brickyard that made the coveted Cannon Hill paving bricks. A fire closed the brickyard and the area became Adams Parknamed after John Quincy Adam’s grandson. The name was changed later to Cannon Hill Park for A.M. Cannon, a local banker and real estate developer. The Olmsted Brothers, nationally known for their landscape designs, created a design ... read more
High tea at the Davenport Hotel, Spokane
Doorman at the Davenport Hotel, Spokane
Original Fox Theater, now the Martin Woldson Theater, Spokane

North America » United States » Washington » Spokane July 15th 2018

8/5 After a wonderful dinner and great conversation, we went to bed and slept like babies. In the morning we woke to a delicious home cooked breakfast of Huckleberry pancakes. We watched hummingbirds line up for the feeders and deer in the meadows. The uninvited turkeys came later. Our breakfast feeding frenzy over, we piled into Ellen and Jim’s car for a tour of Spokane. ‘Spokan Falls’ was the original name of the town, named in 1873 by James Nettle Glover after the Spokane Tribe. By 1891 an ‘e’ was added and the falls was dropped making it simply Spokane. The impressive Spokane Washington Water Power Company now called Avista Utilities, completed the Monroe Street Dam. We took the steps down to Spokane Vista, an impressive park and viewing spot of the powerful falls. There is ... read more
Monroe Street Bridge, Spokane
Mount Spokane stone Vista House
Looking towards Idaho from Mt Spokane

North America » United States » Washington » Mt Rainier July 15th 2018

8/3 The Alexander’s Lodge and Inn included breakfast (7am to 9:30am) we chose the 7am to get on the mountain early. The breakfast was all self serve. Coffee, tea, and apple juice were at a table station. You help yourself to bacon, sausage, scrambled eggs and cooked potatoes in steamer trays. Yogurt, hard boiled eggs, a waffle maker, bagels, toast and English muffins were also available but there was no visible staff. There was plenty to eat but not the quality I had expected thinking we would be at an inn with a restaurant, a chef would be on staff here. It turns out it was not that kind of inn. This breakfast was no different than a major motel chain breakfast. We left Alexander Lodge around 8:15am for Mount Rainier National Park entering from the ... read more
Paradise River flows into Narada Falls
Wildflowers line the path to Myrtle Falls
Myrtle Falls

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