Sunday, July 22, 2012

Jeep-Boat-Jeep to Santa Elena

Since it cost me 30$ to take a taxi from La Fortuna to Arenal Observatory Lodge (on the other side of the volcano) I was surprised when I discovered a jeep-boat-jeep transfer from the hotel across Arenal lake to my hotel in Santa Elena.  What a deal!  Going by land takes practically the whole day.

The transfer was fairly flawless.  The entire journey was about 4 hours.  The last leg of the trip was the most fun, an hour and a half of the bumpiest dirt road I have ever been on (and I grew up in the country).

My first stop after finding my hotel (Cabinas Eddy) was the Monteverde Cheese Factory.  I was hoping for a tour but of course there are none on Sundays so I opted for some homemade ice cream since I was already there.  The Monteverde area was founded by US Quakers, who began farming in the 1950s and soon after created the cheese factory.

I spent over an hour studying the snakes at the serpentario.  I have been paranoid that poisonous snakes are going to fall out of the trees while I am hiking.  I am not sure that I feel much better about hiking in the rain forest after the museum trip, there are approximately 20 venomous snakes in the country.

The eyelash palm pit viper gives live birth to about 18 snakes, but they are nocturnal. 
Is this a bad time to mention I REALLY want to do a night tour?

Same species, different color.  So pretty.

Boa constrictors give live birth as well, but to about 65 snakes.  I could not believe how enormous these things are, they can reach almost 10 feet long! 
This one spent its time testing the screen above and planning its escape.  Which is why whenever I could not find a snake its cage I could not help but be a little paranoid.

The green vine snake is my favorite, but the one on the left is not too happy about my existence, or at least that there is glass in between us...

1 comment:

  1. Okay, I now have the heebie-jeebies. Thanks Brady. Beautiful photos of the snakes, however. Again, I had to do some research, "In Newsweek's 100 Places to Remember Before They Disappear, Monteverde appears as the Americas' #14. It has also been deemed one of the Seven Wonders of Costa Rica by popular vote, and has been called by National Geographic 'the jewel in the crown of cloud forest reserves'." AND YOU ARE THERE. Super cool.

    Very interesting about the Quakers. I don't think I knew they got around like that but upon researching it, "What is now considered Monteverde was founded by Quakers from the United States whose pacifist values led them to defy the American draft during the Korean War. The majority of the group hailed from Fairhope, Alabama, and it included people who were not Quakers but pacifists and conscientious objectors." More Wow.


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