Blogs from Puntarenas, Costa Rica, Central America Caribbean

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After breakfast this morning, we had a short ride to the Manuel Antonio National Park. This is a very small park along the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica. We did a walking tour of the park walking in to the beach where we had several hours to enjoy the beach if we desired. The walk yielded very little new to our wildlife list with the exception of a few bugs. The larger animals consisted of monkeys and sloths. The White-faced Monkeys here are very bold and will steal items right off the beach if you do not watch your belongings. Raccoons will do the same as we watched one check out some backpacks. After walking into the beach, we spent a short while sitting at a table near the beach before deciding to walk out of ... read more
Capuchin Monkey eating from the tree
Black Iguana
Sleeping Sloth

Central America Caribbean » Costa Rica » Puntarenas » Quepos February 5th 2020

Breakfast at the hotel proved entertaining as the Howler Monkeys join us by breakfasting in the trees nearby. One never knew when they would show up. Once again we choose to take the optional tour hoping for some wildlife sightings. It was a short ride to the marina in Quepos. We boarded the nice Catamaran complete with water slides and bar. There were drinks and snacks available. The day was beautiful and the ocean calm, but wildlife was at a minimum. We saw just a few different birds including Magnificent Frigatebirds, Brown Boobys and Brown Pelicans. Before lunch we anchored in a cove where we could snorkel or enjoy the water slides. I chose to snorkel and armed with my camera got a few murky fish photos. After snorkeling, lunch was provided on the boat. We ... read more
Climbing up
Quite a pose
Sitting and thinking

Central America Caribbean » Costa Rica » Puntarenas » Quepos February 4th 2020

We headed out today on the last leg of our journey across Costa Rica. This time to the west coast and the Pacific Ocean. We were traveling to the area of Manuel Antonio National Park staying just outside the park at the Shanna by the Beach Hotel. Our first stop as we left Monteverde was to allow 13 of our fellow travelers to switch to another bus as they were ending their time in Costa Rica and returning to San Jose. That left 25 of us to continue on to Manuel Antonio. This stop was a cafe and convenience store along the Pan-American Highway. The store had beautiful carved decorations. Our next stop was a Jaco Beach where we had time to get lunch, to walk on the beach and to sit along a little stream ... read more
Iguana Planter
Fred and the Macaw planter
Crocodiles from the bus


We had decided that it would be in our best interest to not go zip lining or hike to cross the Hanging Bridges, so after breakfast at the hotel we hopped on a shuttle that runs within the hotel to go up to the canopy. Up at the canopy we hoped to see some different birds as there are birds that only live in the high elevations. Upon arriving at the canopy, the young man working there noticed our cameras and set about refilling the hummingbird feeder. As soon as he replaced the feeder, a variety of hummingbirds appeared. Sometimes as many a five at a time. Christian then came out and started looking with us to find other birds in the trees. After a time, he suggested that he might know where we could find ... read more
DSC03806 green hummingbird
Violet Sabrewing
Green Violetear


We awoke again to overcast skies and the volcano was not visible. At breakfast we again looked for birds at the feeder. There were not as many as yesterday and no new species. Today was a travel day with a hike into Arenal Lake before moving on to Monteverde and the cloud forest. The "hike" was along a paved trail through the rain forest. We had a brief glimpse at a peccary that did not stay around long enough for a photo. Leafcutter ants were in abundance, but birds were scarce. I had one quick look at a woodcreeper. The lake hosted a couple of Muscovy Ducks. As we returned to our bus, the rain forest lived up to its name with a cloud burst of rain as we hustled up the trail. Back on the ... read more
Scarlet-rumped Tanager
Female Scarlet-rumped Tanager
Rufous-tailed Hummingbird


The beach today was such a success we decided to do it again (except for the sunburns). Tiffany decided to rent a surfboard and hang 10! She insisted she didn’t need a lesson and to her credit she did get up a couple of times. For some reason the waves this day were far bigger than previous days. This made for challenging surfing but very fun boogie boarding. After a pizza lunch it was, of course, back to the pool. For dinner was, can you guess? Rice and beans. Was early to bed as we had to get up early the next day for a departure into the mountains. It was Jen’s turn to read some BFG which doesn’t really make the kids sleepy as they get very excited. For those of you that don’t know ... read more
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Today we decided we had enough of tours and busy touristy places, as well Charlie had Helped us rent some boogie boards so we decided to stay on the beach. Our suite came complete with beach umbrella and some beach chairs so we dragged them all down to the ocean side. We got the kids under an umbrella digging holes in the sand and gave the boogie board a try. The waves were perfect and we had it down in no time. It was quite a bit of fun. Alexa didn’t take much convincing to get on the boogie board but Scott took some cajoling. Both kids were going 20 or 30 m by themselves by the end. The adults all somehow got burnt to a crisp. Jen is convinced the sunscreen is defective, but I ... read more
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For Alexa’s birthday we decided to take a trip into a beautiful set of waterfalls. There were three options to reach the falls. One - hike 4 km up-and-down steep dusty roads in the 35° heat. Two - ride sweaty hot horses four kilometres up-and-down steep dusty roads in the 35° heat. Three - a pick up truck foor kilometres up and down steep dusty rose In the 35° heat. I’ll let you guess what we chose.The waterfalls were spectacular. There were two of them, one for taking pictures at which was the higher of the two, and a smaller one for swimming which had a large pool at the base of it. The water was beautifully cool, clear and refreshing. The children didn’t much care for it maybe because of the fish swimming around ... read more
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Today we decided to visit the very famous Manuel Antonio national Park. We had to get up very early as we had been told that park gates open at seven and if you get there too late they’ll be a multi-hour line. Immediately after arriving we were swarmed with offers of tours and parking and somehow decided on our guide Eduardo. He was very nice and spoke great English And had a very powerful spotting scope. He also really liked Tiffany. He showed us the Eagles, two toed sloths, three toed sloths, white face monkeys, Howler monkeys, butterflies, and iguanas. We heard the tucans but never saw them. We then had a swim in the ocean at the beautiful beach. We also had a little bit of a an encounter with something called a coatimundi which ... read more
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After seeing some wildlife near our hotel, our taste for adventure had been whet. The next morning we Headed for reptile Park about a half hour drive away. Sure enough we found dozens and dozens of snakes, lizards, Caymans, tortoises, turtles, fish and frogs (Much to Tiffany’s delight). Lunch with some very nice fish tacos in the town of Dominica, run by an American ex-pats. We then hit the beach again, the waves were much different in Dominica. The beach was much flatter so the waves came in for miles and miles. As they rushed back out, the sand but if your feet would become a wrote it in you to sink into the beach. Dinner once again consisted of rice beans ham and cheese.Bedtime seems to be right after dark for both children and adults ... read more
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