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He only went out for some milk A blurb of monstrous proportions - it was only supposed to be a couple of lines and the odd photo.

La Fortuna

COSTA RICA | Friday, 29 February 2008 | Views [1390]

What a setting for a town

What a setting for a town

Arenal volcano is the most captive one in Costa Rica - it was a tough decision to come here and not head east to climb Costa Rica's highest one - Cerro Chirripo.  After an easy 4.5 hour, $3.5 bus ride and I'm liking my choice.  Arenal is one of those perfect cones, but alas this one isn't climbable, it's too dangerous even for idiots like me.
 
La Fortuna isn't a particularly attractive town considering it had to be rebuilt in 1968 after the last big eruption.  The volcano has 'spewed' continuously since then.  It has a nice central park, a quaint church and a jaw dropping volcanic backdrop at sunset.
 
Although there is a reserve just near town, i opted to go to the Lonely Planet described, world renowned, Caño Negro for a day on the river.  It's a strange trip, it's not that enjoyable and yet it's an awesome day.  A French guy with less braincells than the iguana he tried to shake out of a tree and a knowledgeable but no fun guide didn't help.  Still, I'm NOT whinging anymore :-)  Ospreys, hawks, various herons, anhingas, cormorants, various kingfishers, howler monkeys, spider monkeys, turtles, caiman's (type of crocodilian) and a lizard that can run on water.  I knew it was going to be good as we drove in - on my right i could see 2 types of egrets and herons lined up for fishing and a river full of caiman's.  On my left i could see a hawk, several vultures and a kingfisher - amazing.
 
That evening i went on a volcano tour - to climb a little way up to a viewing area and then gasp at the show.  I'd unfortunately got the frat party tour, vodka and volcanoes is a dangerous mix - later when we go to the hot springs I'd be glad, for now i hang back trying to appreciate the forest in the night.  It wasn't difficult to imagine walking through a lava tube of trees - they formed the perfect shape.  Strange, loud noises came from my right and it took me a while to realise that it was volcanic eruptions crashing down the volcano.  I've never heard anything like it - incredible.  It was an ominous sort of rumbling that would became adrenaline inducing if you thought about it too much.  It was great too when we were in the open and could watch the lava and rocks cascading down.  I again went off by myself to let my eyes adjust.  When will people realise where flash is no good?  Damn I'm whinging again.  Every now and again bright orange lava and rocks cascaded down like a waterfall - wow.  After this we go to a hot spring - it´s night time, there are no lights and we are in a public pool.  It´s a slightly bizarre but very enjoyable experience.  I still have shudders over the drunk local guy who 'came onto me', even after his spa bath he reeked of booze and then drove home after.  Why is it always me?
 
A great couple of days, maybe I'm not so tired of travelling after all.

Tags: volcano

 

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