Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Our Trip To Costa Rica - Day Five

We got another early start on day five of our trip, as we head out for another excursion. Today the destinations were a rainforest, the Tabacon Hot Springs, and the Arenal Volcano. Our guide for the day was Gustavo, another excellent guide from TAM Travel.

At the rainforest we learned how rainforests are formed, and that the United States and other countries actually compensate countries like Costa Rica for preserving rainforests because we all depend on them to create oxygen. We were lucky enough to see a family of howler monkeys high in the trees. Then we were introduced to the Maleku tribe, a tribe of people indigenous to Costa Rica who still live in the traditional fashion. They spoke to us about their lifestyle and we bought some artwork from them to support their plight. Money is of no use to them on a day-to-day basis because they live off the land, but they do use the funds to buy more land to preserve their people.

We left the rainforest and headed towards the hot springs. Along the way we were lucky to see a toucan and a family of pizote (cousin to the common raccoon). The countryside of Costa Rica is beautiful!

The Tabacon Hot Springs is a man-made destination, but is very beautiful and has a very natural feel to it. We had dinner at the Tabacon resort and then headed to the volcano. Unfortunately, teh weather was such that we only saw a small burst of orange from teh volcano. We were told there is a fifty-fifty chance of seeing any action, so we were lucky to see the small burst that we saw.

On the way home, we stopped the tour bus to observe a two-toed sloth travelling along some telephone lines. He looked like something from a Star Wars film. Very cool!

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