We've been seeing so many incredible birds (Colombia has more bird species than any other country) and vintage cars (Colombia also seemingly has more vintage SUVs than any country) that I decided to (or succumbed to) start a couple Instagram feeds. Feel free to follow, if you're so inclined. Birds: Balakay @balakaysbirds Cars: Vanablog @workingvintages
Caught a few of these Andean Cock-of-the-Rocks just outside Jardin, Colombia. Beautiful, crazy birds. The males, as you can see, have disk-like mohawks and brilliant blood-orange plumage. They head-bang and squeal (kinda sound like pigs; see video below) when courting females. We didn't actually see any females, however. At least we don't think we did. … Continue reading Some Cock-of-the-Rocks
Colonial meets Caribbean. Bureau-crazy!Fortunately, I had the pleasure of sharing this pain with our new best buds and fellow overlanders, Wendo, Chris, and Tyler. For two full days (8am to 5pm), in long pants and closed-toed shoes — not allowed inside government offices without them — we trekked across Cartagena through swampy heat, sweating pit … Continue reading Cartagena, Columbia
Our last stop in Costa Rica. Beach Score: 6 out of 10Not the most scenic beach. Though it's probably because it looks like many of the other surf beaches we visited — namely Playa Grande, Playa Guiones, and Playa Santa Teresa — and thus its score suffers from redundancy. The sand isn't whiter. The views … Continue reading Playa Dominical, Costa Rica
After three failed attempts — once near Lake Atitlan in Guatemala, once in Monteverde National Park in Costa Rica, and once in Santa Elena National Park in Costa Rica — we finally saw one! Four in fact. Parque Nacional Los QuetzalesWe decided, or I suppose I forced, we'd give spotting the quetzal one final shot. … Continue reading The Resplendent Quetzal!
Or at least two of them. We've ventured near cloud forests thrice on this trip: camped near one in Mexico, hiked near one in Guatemala, and intended but got blockaded near one in Nicaragua. We've ventured into cloud forests twice (thus far) in Costa Rica. BiodiversityDespite occupying less than 1% of the world's woodlands, cloud … Continue reading The Cloud Forests of Costa Rica
Home of the MS-13. And pupusas (stuffed tortillas)! Crossing the BorderEl Salvador is certainly one of the, how do I say this without frightening my parents, more murder-y, err, less safe, countries we're traveling through. And border towns are typically less safe than other towns. We were determined to van through. Rápido. Then we saw … Continue reading El Salvador