From Montaña to Mar

Written By Jane and Elliot

Hello and welcome back to your favorite blog. This weeks installment features the thrilling adventures of the most lovable student group living out their self proclaimed travel dreams. That’s right, we planned everything from volcano climbing to relaxing on the Caribbean. Using boats, cars, airplanes, and our own feet, we have truly traveled far and wide this week.

While our student directed travel started in Antigua, the first real challenge was climbing to the peak of Acatenango.

The group getting their pre-climb hype on.
Hiking through the clouds.
Emma and Saul breaking in the tents.
After a 7 hour climb, the students began to see the fruits of their labor.
Hunter, Ryan, Saul, and Elliot embarking on a late, late night hike to the volcano, Fuego.
The view from the ridge of fuego at 1am.
Just an hour after the Fuego crew returned, a sunrise hike to the summit ensued.
Emily, Maddie, and Emma checking out the view.
Just in time to show our group spirit with Fuego as our backdrop, the iconic Carpe flag is finally finished!!
Ryan taking pride in his creation.
Carpe Diem & Volcanos, a love story
Descending after a night on top of the world.
Thanks everyone!
From 4,000 feet up to sea level, we made the long journey from Antigua to Rio Dulce. Hot, humid, tropical climate and a diversity of small lizards greeted us at our first hostel.
The iconic Rio Dulce bridge.
Our first venture was to the Volcanically heated hot waterfalls of Finca el Paraiso.
Matt, Elliot, Maddie, Saul, Emma, and Caroline enjoying the heat.
Group dip in the cool pools below the falls.
Hunter and Jane showing off the scenery.
Showing the love after a good swim…
…And yet again after some seafood.
After a short two night in the town of Rio Dulce, we moved farther down the river to our next stay at Finca Tatin.
Emily, Emma and Ryan working on their skinncare routine at the hot sprinngs we kayaked to.
Next we headed to Livingston, making our way through the breathtaking canyon.
Our time on the river ended with a dip in some nearby caves. Two baldies walkin’ down the path.
Emily climbing into the abyss.

After only a few hours in Guatemala City, our flight to Costa Rica left early the next morning. An easy 1.5 hours in the air took us to San José where we departed for Turrialba, the home of our final Spanish school and beloved host families.

Group Spanish lessons with the crew.
“Here there are cacao pods, strange fruits, a berry that makes everything taste sweet, a tree that secretes vanilla scented oil, and berries with a strong orange pigment. There are also extremely bitter leaves that are said to cure stomach issues, and narcotic leaves containing DMT used for spiritual experiences. As I describe this garden in Turriable it really sounds like an otherworldly scene. The tour was led by a re representative of CATIE, The Tropical and Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center.” -Hunter Elwell.

Saul sampling the biodiversity.
Liquados made from a neighbor of the Coffee bean we all know and love was where the party truly began.
So many crazy plants.
The week ended with some Zumbasalsaaaa!
Zumba squad!