We spent our second day at Golfo Dulce, the beautiful, pristine bay on the southwest coast of Costa Rica. We landed on Playa Blanca for an immersive experience with the “Ticos,” as Costa Ricans are called. Today we had the opportunity to experience a little bit of the Costa Rican culture. Some guests headed off to learn how chocolate and vanilla are cultivated–and eaten! Other guests learned about heart of palm, and some tried their luck with gold panning (no luck this time). While experiencing all this, we had wonderful encounters with white-faced capuchin monkeys, mantled howler monkeys, and several bird species, such as the spectacularly colorful scarlet macaws. Indeed, today was a very meaningful and complete day.
National Geographic Quest
Formerly a cattle ranch, the Sanguare Reservation now plays host to a myriad of bird species and a cornucopia of greenery. Restored to its original natural state by the owners who now run a small eco-resort on site, this piece of heaven on the Colombian Caribbean coast is an ideal stopover for birders and nature enthusiasts. An early start brought us to the dock at Sanguare and then on to walks of varying lengths for guests. We were refreshed with local juices such as corozo, guayaba agria, and lemonade; we also enjoyed some traditional sweets and cakes all freshly made at the resort. Our hardy travelers were introduced to more of Colombia’s incredible rhythms, including mapale, cumbia, and chande, performed with pride and gusto by a group of young artists from the nearby town of San Onofre. The day was capped off perfectly with a tranquil cruise on local panga boats into the Bahia of Cispata. We saw flocks of frigatebirds, parakeets, white ibis, a green-backed heron, and much more. Finally we observed a one-year-old crocodile, raised in a local crocodile conservation project, being released into the waters of the bay. Fortunately no one made the poor decision to kiss the baby croc on the lips!