Los Ajenos Live Performance in Costa Rica – See how Ticos Like to Party!
It has become a tradition for most of the Costa Ricans to go to the coast during Easter and vacation there and one of the favorite destinations in the country is the province of Guanacaste. It’s the perfect place for the Costa Ricans who live in the city to have a nice vacation on the beach for a few days. We live in Playas del Coco and last Easter I had the opportunity to meet with some friends from high school that were visiting. I have to say that I have really good memories with mostly good friends that I still talk to and hang out whenever we can and it was fun to hangout with them when they all came to Cooc for the weekend. Los Ajenos in Playas del Coco This time we went to a concert together, most of the tourist towns always organize big events by the end of the Easter week and this time was no exception. One of the most popular bands in Costa Rica, Los Ajenos was playing and of course we had to go. I ended up recording a video on the stage, I really want to show our readers how these guys were. They played some iconic Costa Rica songs, their own original songs and above all they delivered a great, full of energy show. So if you are coming to Costa Rica and you hear that Los Ajenos are going to play, you can’t miss them ! I want to thank the staff from “Los Ajenos” to let me record the video. Here is their website if you want to contact them or check out the band. www.losajenos.com I want to show in this video how Costa Ricans have fun and party with their friends. I hope you enjoy it ! Pura Vida I took this video with my GoPro Camara for more info click the picture
Kalaloch Area in Olympic Peninsula – Yes Washington Beaches are Beautiful!
I’ve been spoiled. Living in the golden coast of Costa Rica for the past year means that I’m surrounded by beautiful beaches, the closest one just a couple minutes away. I’m used to warm waters, soft sand and hot weather year round so that the beach is somewhere that you can go any hour of the day, any time of the year. Not so much when I was living in Washington. My family went camping on the Olympic Peninsula every summer when I was young and although I was too young to know the difference, I loved it and thought that those beaches were the most beautiful and exotic ones in the world. It’s not until I got older that I learned there were such things as “white sand” beaches and “turquoise” waters that you can swim in! Kalaloch Beach Area The one area I remember the most are the beaches at Kalaloch. The name is so pretty, coming from a Quinault word k’–E–le–ok which means “a good place to land.” We’d go camping and I would play all day with my brother and friends at the beach and eat some of the best ice cream. I’d have to say that growing up on a beach would probably be the most fun environment for a kid. We stopped camping there when I got older so many years later, I took a trip back there during my junior year of college with some friends. None of them have been there before so I wanted to show them a nice place on the coast that’s not as well known. But first… let’s do a little compare and contrast shall we? Left picture is at Tamarindo, Costa Rica in November wearing what I normally wear: shorts and tank top. Right picture is at Kalaloch beach Washington in March, a tad bit more covered up. Big difference! The Beaches There are several beaches within the entire Kalaloch area: Beach 1, Beach 2, Beach 3, Beach 4, Beach 6 and Ruby beach. Ruby beach is the more popular beach in the area and is just north of Beach 6. We’d normally camp at Beach 1 and walk along the coastline to the others but there are campsites throughout the area. The entire Olympic Peninsula coastline is 65 miles with the Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary and three other wildlife refuges, helping to keep the area a haven for many sea creatures. There are many hiking trails, beach and nature in and around the entire Kalaloch area with various overlooks and points of interests. During the summer, you can brave the waters and go in but most visitors prefer not to and rather walk on the beach and go wildlife watching. Even during high season which are the summer months, the beaches are never crowded and always clean. OK so the beaches in Washington are as opposite from the beaches in Costa Rica as you can get but by no means does that equal less beauty. The attraction and allure of these beaches aren’t white sand or clear waters. Instead, they have a quieter beauty that doesn’t go unnoticed by those who have a deeper appreciation for nature beyond the surface. The beaches in Washington are truly beautiful. Who said you need to wear a swimsuit to have fun at the beach? Can you see the three of us? Camping Camping at Kalaloch is the most popular activity during the summer. It’s one of the best memories I have as a kid and it’s a fantastic place to take your family and friends to get a experience the Washington outdoors. There are over 150 sites throughout Kalaloch which are open year round but really, who wants to camp during winter? You need to reserve spots during summer because they go fast! There is also Kalaloch lodge near Beach 2 that takes reservations for rooms. Definitely reserve early, they fill up fast as well. Kalaloch Beach Area Location Driving: Take Highway 101 from I-5 to Olympic Peninsula More Information To get all the details about Kalaloch Beach including riptides, camping, wildlife and more, visit the official site of the National Park Service. If you like this article you can like us on FB by clicking below All photos courtesy of my awesome friend Jonathan Laylo – check out his Tumblr and Flickr feed
Gasworks Park in Seattle – A Modern Park with Old Industrial Structures
When you go to a park, you usually see a playground, trees, a picnic area, grassy knolls, maybe a lake and some walking paths but you would never see a gas plant (yes, you read that right, a gas plant). But if you’re in Seattle, you will. Gasworks Park in Seattle is actually a public park on the site where the former Seattle Gas Light company plant was located and believe it or not, it’s actually pretty nice! They turned that area into a beautiful park and kept the previous plant structures to give it that a very quirky characteristic. Gasworks Park First operating as a gas plant from 1906 to 1956, Gasworks became an official park in 1975. It was designed by a local Seattle architect, Richard Haag who later on won the American Society of Landscape Architects Presidents Award of Design Excellence which is highly deserved. You got to be creative to turn a gas plant into a park! Gasworks uses a good number of the old structures as a children’s play area, graffiti canvases and ruins on display. Entrance of the park This park used to be one of my favorite getaway places during college when I needed to refresh my mind after hours of studying. It was only a little over a mile away from my apartment at UW so sometimes I’d run there or take my books and walk there to study. During the winter, it’s not that nice but during spring and summer, Gasworks Park is a popular spot for students and tourists to come and enjoy a beautiful view. Frequent visitors just take in the sight of old gas plants like normal but it is an interesting sight to see for the first time. You can sit on the grassy hills and have a picnic, fly kites, walk your dog, throw a frisbee or just sunbathe. It’s fun to watch all the kayakers, sailboaters and rowers exercise their skill on Lake Union. In the summer, you’ll probably see weddings going on here and there as it’s a popular place for couples to say “I do.” I went to a wedding here a few years ago and it was lovely. My favorite part of the park is right at the highest point where there is a sundial. That spot hosted many peace concerts back in the day and it’s also the best spot to see fireworks for July 4th, if you get there early enough! It’s popular with kite flyers and I’ve even seen people sledding down the hill without snow. You might see students doing Capoeira (form of Brazilian martial arts plus dance), playing with their helicopter drones or couples taking their engagement pictures. View from the top Is it clean? To be honest, the concept sounds like a terrible combination. An old gas plant converted to a park? Not exactly your top choice for prime park real estate. The Washington State Department of Ecology and US EPA cleaned up the park using several different processes to remove all the contaminants and particles. As of today, there aren’t any known areas with surface soil contamination so it’s completely safe but if you take a look at the lake, the water looks kind of dirty. As you walk around, you’ll notice that many of the structures are covered in graffiti art. How the artists got up to the top, I have no idea. The view is pretty spectacular so whoever chose this piece of land had the right idea. You have a full on view of Lake Union, I-5 freeway, downtown, Queen Anne and the Space Needle. Other view from the top An Important Landmark in Seattle Gasworks Park was just a park with funky old structures to me back in college but after doing some research, the historical and cultural importance of this site is fairly substantial. It is probably one of the most unique and interesting landmarks in Seattle and was finally registered on the National Register of Historic Places just last year. The combination of the old industrial age and natural beauty was most creative and highly innovative by the architect and park designer. Instead of the ugly brown towers ruining a piece of land that serves as a stunning base for Seattle landscape, they actually became impressive structures, standing out and blending in at the same time with the terrain. By doing so, it also increased the awareness and knowledge of the old industrial past in the United States. When the gas plant was created, environmental safety was not in the highest regard, but it is today and the state has done a fine job cleaning it up. The old structures represent an era of the US almost long forgotten, but it also emphasizes the country’s technological development in the past 50 years. Although these towers have not been in operation for many years now, they haven’t completely lost all of the soundness and stability they used to represent. Preserved in fairly good condition, they can be easily seen from any place on Lake Union. If you get a chance to visit Gasworks Park, definitely do so. Learn about this impressive piece of historical land that represents a Seattle in the old days and a modern Seattle in the current day. Best time to go? Summer for sure. You can see what the locals like to do on a nice sunny day. It’s one of my favorite spots in Seattle! If you like this article you can like us on FB by clicking below Location Additional Visiting Information Free parking lot No entrance fee Small snack stand with facilities No hunting or fishing allowed
The Famous Rio Tarcoles Where the Crocodiles Live
If you want to go see some big crocodiles in Costa Rica, the Rio Tarcoles is the one you will visit. This river is one of the most well known in the country, not just for the crocodiles but for other various reasons as well since about half of all of Costa Rica’s population lives along the river’s basins. Rio Tarcoles (Tarcoles River) Location When you are driving to Playa Jaco from San Jose, you will pass a bridge where you can get out and walk onto to see the river. This area has become a big tourist attraction because of the immense population of crocodiles that live just several meters below the bridge. You can see them easily with the naked eye, they look like giant logs! The entire river watershed covers over 2000 kilometers and it is one of the most contaminated and polluted rivers in Costa Rica. Despite the contamination, an abundance of wildlife thrives and depends on the river for survival. Emptying into the Pacific Ocean, Rio Tarcoles begins at the point where two different rivers meet creating the border of the Carara Biological Reserve. Rio Tarcoles as seen from the bridge on the way to Playa Jaco Additionally, the river also helps irrigate agricultural lands and generates electricity. However the pollution derives from a combination of sewage, industrial waste and in 2000, a petroleum refinery accidentally leaked nearly 400 liters of fuel into the river. It is considered an unsafe place to swim in. Obviously. Wildlife Some wildlife that can be seen in Rio Tarcoles are migratory and native birds, iguanas, basilisk and macaws but the prize creature to see are most definitely the crocodiles. The amount of American crocodiles in this river is simply astounding. So much so that it’s considered to have the highest population of crocodiles in the world. If you have a keen interest in seeing these big reptiles up close and personal, there are several river cruises you can take that showcase these spectacular beasts. You take a nice safari ride on the river and at certain points near the mudflats, the guides will get out and feed the crocodiles just a couple feet away from you and you will see a great display of the strength and power of these creatures. Want more to know more about Costa Rica? Subscribe to us ! Rio Tarcoles’ main attraction is the crocodiles. Along the river are some hikes and waterfalls in the valley but other than that, there is not much else to enjoy at the Tarcoles River. There is the small Tarcoles town nearby if you want to explore a small Costa Rican community. It’s a nice place to stop, stretch your legs and see some huge crocs on the way to Jaco or Manuel Antonio. At the entrance of the bridge, you will see a restaurant, a hotel and several souvenir shops taking advantage of people stopping. It is quite the sight to see with so many crocodiles congregated in one area! If you like this article you can like us on FB by clicking below