Posts Tagged ‘sloth’

Jaguar Rescue Center

Posted in Costa Rica on January 28th, 2010 by Vagablonding – 1 Comment

On the morning of Wednesday, January 27th we rented bikes and rode 3km south to the Jaguar Rescue Center. The Center takes in all sorts of wildlife, rehabilitates them, and then releases them back into the wild. They also breed endangered snakes.

Sloth - Jaguar Rescue Center

At the center I enjoyed the best wildlife experience of my life; I held a baby sloth! Sloths are my favorite animals and they are even cuter in real life.

Sloth - Jaguar Rescue Center

Sloth - Jaguar Rescue Center

The light colored ones are 2 toed sloths and they are more aggressive because they hunt for insects. You can only pet them on their backs. The 2 toed sloth’s fur is softer than the more wiry fur of the darker colored 3 toed sloth. The 3 toed sloths are super friendly; they just want to hug you all day. One of the baby 3 toed sloths came to the rescue center when it dropped off its mother from a tree right into their garden. When the mother sloth drops her baby she doesn’t usually go down to collect it. The center has tried to release both the 6 month old 3 toed sloths into the wild but they just keep coming back!

Sloth - Jaguar Rescue Center

Ryan and I both got to hold the baby 3 toed sloths. When it was time to go visit the howler monkeys the volunteer put one of the 3 toed sloths on the tree. Ryan started taking pictures of it on the tree, then it grabbed onto him and climbed right on his neck!

Sloth - Jaguar Rescue Center

He held it for a while, then we tried to put it back on the tree but it was hard because it had a very strong grip. It was so cute; the sloth didn’t want to be on the tree, it wanted to be on Ryan and it kept reaching for him after he let go of it. These guys are major buds. I could hug them alllll day.

We also saw the baby 2 toed sloth attacking the baby 3 toed sloth. It was the slowest fight ever. The 2 baby 2 toed sloths had a love hate relationship with each other. Sometimes they were fighting and sometimes they were licking each other’s faces. The 2 baby 3 toed sloths really liked each other and the volunteer said they sleep together at night curled in a little ball. Sloths are usually solitary animals and they keep to themselves in their tree most of the time.

Sloth - Jaguar Rescue Center

We went in the big howler monkey cage and the baby howler monkeys climbed all over us. They were having a good time chewing on the camera strap, and on my hair.

Howler monkey - Jaguar Rescue Center

Howler monkey - Jaguar Rescue Center

After playing with the monkeys we saw 2 baby crocodiles in a pond, an owl with a broken wing, and lots of poisonous and non-poisonous snakes.

Last we saw the Margay cub. The Margay is a beautiful wildcat related to the Ocelot. They are adept tree climbers and jumpers.

Margay - Jaguar Rescue Center

When the tour was done we paid the $10 donation and rode home. Tomorrow we are leaving Puerto Viejo to go 12km south to the super small town of Manzanillo to enjoy the lovely beaches and hike in the wildlife refuge.

Sun, Sand, Sloths, and Sandwiches in Puerto Viejo

Posted in Costa Rica on January 22nd, 2010 by Vagablonding – Be the first to comment

The hot water in our place at Coco Loco Lodge didn’t work and the wifi didn’t reach our room so we decided to move. After looking at a few places we decided on Hostel Pagalú which we moved to on Wednesday, January 20th. We LOVE this new place! for $28 a night we have a clean and nice room with a double bed, ceiling fan, bathroom with an amazing hot water shower, lovely common area, free wifi, and a common kitchen. This is the nicest hostel I’ve seen; I highly recommend Hostel Pagalú.

Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica

Kids - Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica

On Tuesday, January 19th we spent the day taking a long walk south down the white sand Playa Cocles  and through a forest path along the ocean. We sat and watched surfers for a while; one surfer was doing handstands on his board. We also saw three sloths: one in palm tree, one in a more sloth-friendly tree, and one dead sloth on the ground, with it’s back leg still clutching a branch :(

Sloth - Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica

Island - Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica

When we returned we went to dinner at Soda Flip Flop where Ryan got a hamburger for 1,200 colones and I got nachos for 1,500 colones. Then we went to the Mega Super grocery store to buy bread, jam, a mango, and beer before turning in for the night.

Forest - Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica

On the morning of Wednesdsay, January 20th we moved to Hostel Pagalu. After that we went to lunch at a place called Bread and Chocolate which we heard was fantastic. It is. I had a delicious veggie sandwich with a huge salad for 2,500 colones, and Ryan had a blt with fruit for 2,500 colones. We split a mint chocolate brownie for 1,000 colones and it was probably the best brownie I have ever eaten. The chocolate is so good because it’s made locally.

Bread and Chocolate Veggie Sandwich - Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica

We spent the afternoon hanging out on Playa Negra the black sand beach  just chillin and swimming. I found a stick and played coconut baseball for a while,  and a super cute stray bud dog hung out with us for a bit.

Stray dog - Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica

We went to dinner at Soda Flip Flop again where I got a spicy fish taco for 1,450 colones and Ryan ordered spaghetti boloñesa for 2,600 colones.

Then we headed to bed. Tomorrow we are going to rent bikes and ride further south to Punta Uva, supposedly one of the most beautiful beaches in the world.

Sunset - Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica

San Jose to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Posted in Costa Rica on January 18th, 2010 by Vagablonding – Be the first to comment

Ryan and I made a last minute decision to take off to Costa Rica for 18 days. So far I think we made the right choice :)

Beach - Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica

We arrived at the airport in San Jose, Costa Rica on Sunday January 17th at 7:30pm. After some searching, we found the driver of the shuttle that we had arranged to take us to our hotel, the Costa Rica Guesthouse, for $22. We only spent one night. The single room with a king bed and private bathroom cost us $45. The rooms were clean and nice, but we were very itchy in the bed. The shared bathrooms looked nice and clean and if I were to stay here again I’d save money and go with a single room with a shared bathroom.

We were supposed to get up early on the morning of Monday, January 18th to catch our 6am bus to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca. I set our alarm to wake us up at 4am, but then we slept in until 5:10am. Oops. I rushed around throwing our things back in our packs while Ryan went to the front desk and managed to convey to the clerk in his very limited Spanish (far better than my non-existent Spanish) that we needed a taxi. The taxi arrived at 5:30am. The driver had a fast and crazy driving style and we flew to the bus station in about 10 minutes. I had a huge shit-eating grin on my face the whole time because I love an adventure! After paying the $3 cab fare, we bought two tickets to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca for 4,290 colones each.

Out the window of the bus we could see some stunning lush scenery, including vast cloud forests with waterfalls and rivers. This is truely a gorgeous country. The bus ride took 4 hours and we managed to sleep for a bit of it. The buses don’t have bathrooms but we did take a 15 minute break in Limon about halfway through the ride. The public buses look pretty similar to Greyhound buses inside and out, but without a bathroom in the back.

At 10:10am we arrived in Puerto Viejo on the southern Caribbean coast. The weather here is sunny and fairly hot, but definitely bearble. Our accommodations here are at the Coco Loco Lodge where we have a clean one bedroom bungalow with a full kitchen, double bed, bathroom, and porch with a hammock (yay!). The room is $55 a night which is more than we’d like to pay but since this is high season most places are booked up so we have to take what we can get.

While waiting for our room to be cleaned we took a stroll around the village. The highlight of this walk was the momma sloth and baby sloth we saw chilling in a tree right outside the place we got lunch! I was so excited; sloths are my favorite animals. Our lunch was excellent too: falafel sandwiches for 2,000 colones each.

Sloth - Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica

After our walk we went back to our room and got ready to go to the black sand beach. The ocean is too rough to snorkel but we had a blast alternating laying in the hot sun and playing in the waves to cool off. Unfortunatly, laying in the sun was so comfy we both fell asleep and got a little sunburnt. Oops.

Beach sign - Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica

When the sun started to set we headed back to our room to clean up and then went to dinner. Ryan got a slice of pizza from Pizza Boruca for 875 colones, then we went to Soda Flip Flop where I got a grande red bean taco for 1,500 colones and we split a plate of chips with some delicious guacamole for 1,500 colones.

We hit up the Super Mart gorcery store on the way home to buy juice, a mango, beer, and water. Everything except fruit products are more expensive here than they are at home. You’re not supposed to drink the water in Puerto Viejo (which I found out after already drinking some earlier in the day, oops AGAIN, hopefully I don’t get sick), though the water in San Jose is safe to drink. But, of course, beer is always a good choice. Travelers should note that there is some forced recycling in place here: you can’t buy bottled beer without bringing in an empty bottle to exchange for it, so if you don’t have a bottle either pay the steeper price, or go find one!