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Things have been busy the last few weeks, but I’ve also found some time here and there (like on a plane back from Chicago one late night) to edit some of my photos.  And thus I have the chance to share some of the warmth and beauty of Central America with you all.

My first full day in Costa Rica found our GAP adventures group bound for Liberia.  After a long bus ride and checking into the hotel, we made for the beach!  Even coming from Atlanta, it was like someone turned the clock back to summer suddenly.  While it doesn’t equal the gulf beaches, Playa Hermosa, which means beautiful beach, was as advertised.

Stand By Me - Playa Hermosa - Costa Rica
Stand By Me - Playa Hermosa - Costa Rica
We Three - Pacific Sunset - Costa Rica
We Three - Pacific Sunset - Costa Rica

The next day, we enjoyed a boat ride through Palo Verde, that although near Liberia was quite a bumpy ride.  The highlight of the boat ride for me was definitely the monkeys, although we saw a couple of crocs and a ton of birds as well. The monkeys were totally looking for handouts and were used to them despite the signs that predicatably said to not feed them.  We were good travelers and didn’t offer them a morsel.

Really No Food? Panhandlers of Palo Verde - Costa Rica Photo
Really No Food? Panhandlers of Palo Verde

The afternoon was free to wander.  I did a bit of ambling on my own and later with a couple of other photogs in the group, Chrysta Brown and Jennifer Young.  Liberia had a hint of tourism, particularly on the main strip, but the town had plenty of bright colors and peeling paint and was really what I had hoped to find.

A Little Bit of Everything - Liberia, Costa Rica Photo
A Little Bit of Everything - Liberia
Iglesia Católica de Liberia - Costa Rica Photo
Iglesia Católica de Liberia

The next morning found us bound for Nicaragua.  I honestly didn’t have a lot of expectations for Nicaragua.  I had heard a lot of great stuff about Costa Rica and what I had heard about Nicaragua was encouraging.  Our first stop was San Juan del Sur, an up and coming coastal destination and a perfect place to ring in the new year on the shores of the Pacific, literally on the beach.  The first New Year we saw in together was the UK in honor of the guys from Scotland.  UK new year happened to be very close to sunset.

San Juan del Sur Sunset - Nicaragua Photo
San Juan del Sur Sunset

If Liberia had been colorful, then San Juan Del Sur was positively a riot of color, mostly pastel.  Between New Years Eve celebrations, a day spent on a sailboat and a night watching sea turtles hatch, I only had one morning to really explore SJDS, but it was a rewarding morning.

Pick A Color - Streets of San Juan Del Sur - Nicaragua photo
Pick A Color - Streets of San Juan Del Sur
Yellow Meets Blue - San Juan Del Sur - Nicaragua Photo
Yellow Meets Blue - San Juan Del Sur

This is just a taste, if you want to see more of Costa Rica and Nicaragua, the full album is going up here.

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