Friday, February 13, 2009

Photo Friday: Lake Arenal, Costa Rica

J. and I went to Costa Rica for our honeymoon. Originally, we wanted to go to Italy, but between being "house poor" (we just bought a house, 6 months before our wedding), and the quickly crashing dollar rate we didn't think we could afford it. So, we picked up our Atlas of the World, let it fall to a page...and lo and behold, it fell to Costa Rica. J. did all the planning (thanks honey!) and we enjoyed a fabulous honeymoon for a fraction of the cost.

Our tour of Costa Rica included, Arenal Volcano, one of the 10 most active volcanoes in the world. On almost a daily basis, red lava comes crashing down the volcano. During the day, the volcano looks like this:

At night, we would sit on our patio chairs with a bottle of wine and watch the lava pour down the mountain until the clouds covered our view. (At this time, I unfortunately had a crappy camera that didn't' take pictures at, you'll just have to use your imaginations for this one!) While, we were lucky to have one clear day with the entire volcano visible (which is touted as good luck!) usually we saw this:

Besides the awesome scenery La Fortuna (the town's name) has many activities: hiking, mountain biking, river rafting, bird-watching, soaking in hot springs. We took a day-trip up to Cano Negro, which was a live version of Disneyland's "Jungle Cruise." But, that's another story for another time. Oh, and if you ever decide you have to see Volcano Arenal for yourself...I highly recommend you stay at the Arenal Observatory Lodge. It's the only hotel which offers front-row seats to the spectacular fireworks display, but you'll feel safe since you're protected by the deep gorge of the Agua Caliente River. It was originally built as a research station (so, you'll feel smart when you stay here) and is the only hotel situated within the Arenal National Park.

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