Yesterday we traveled 93 miles north from San Jose to La Fortuna, Costa Rica. The shuttle in which we rode included two people from Sweden, one from France, three from the USA, and the driver. By the time we reached La Fortuna we had become an international community of travelers. Along the way we saw several sloths and numerous giant iguanas. Our temporary home for the next few days will be the Tabacon Grand Spa Hot Springs hotel, located near the 30,000 acre Arenal Volcano National Park. The hotel houses guests in the middle of the Costa Rican Rainforest. I can look out the back door and see butterflies, humming birds, and the Rainforest flora and fauna. From the front of our little building of 8 guest rooms we have a magnificent view of the 5,347 foot Arenal Volcano.
Arenal is Costa Rica's most active volcano. It's most recent eruption period began in 1968 and continued through 2010. Seismologists say it is resting now, but still very much alive. Arenal National Park surrounding the volcano has nearly 75% of the total 850 species of birds in Costa Rica. Other inhabitants in the park are sloths, white-faced capuchin monkeys, coati, deer and snakes, including the infamous fer-de-lance, parrot snake and boa constrictor.
A five minute walk (or a very brief shuttle ride) from the hotel location is the Tabacon Thermal Hot Springs Spa Resort, where the water heated by Arenal cascades down into the Rainforest to form bubbling streams and babbling waterfalls. I enjoyed a relaxing time sitting beneath one of those waterfalls yesterday! I shall do so again today!
Home and loved ones are never out of mind when on the road or across the sea. Our granddaughter Katie returned from England last night and our home will be her home while we are away. She graduated with a Master's degree from Bangor University in January (and grandad adds braggingly with a 4.0!). Her friend from England, Liam, is now shoveling snow from our drive--an opportunity he had never had before--and here we are in lovely Costa Rica, soaking up the thermal waters.