Last week, we brought you our favorite Costa Rica canopy tours. This week, we've gathered some of the best canopy tours in Central America, from the Belize's Cayo District to Panama's beautiful Boquete Valley.
Canopy tours are the very best way to explore the forests (cloud, rain and otherwise) of Central America. They also offer Central America's best dose of adrenaline -- from zip lines to Tarzan Swings, rappel courses to swinging suspension bridges. Happy soaring!
Our Central America Animal for May is a Green Violet Hummingbird, one of the numerous prismatic hummingbirds who dance through Costa Rica's forests and jungles. The country really is a birdwatcher's paradise. (Anybody's paradise, really!)
Canopy tours are the very best way to explore Costa Rica's forests, hands down.
Located all across the tropical country, Costa Rica canopy tours include zip lines (those metal cables you soar down on harnesses), suspension bridges, platforms, exciting rappel courses, and more. Some include aerial trams, horseback riding, and even Tarzan Swings: free falls on bungees into Costa Rica valleys. Whee! All include unparalleled opportunities to get up close and personal with tropical flora and fauna -- as well as a heady dose of adrenaline.
Here's our guide to the top canopy tours in Costa Rica.
Guatemala shopping is some of the most inexpensive in all of Central America, especially when it comes to Mayan handicrafts at marketplaces like the twice-weekly Chichicastenango. There are also several malls in Guatemala, offering both low-priced and luxury goods.
Panama shopping is also pretty fantastic. Panama City malls range from upscale shopping centers boasting numerous international chain stores, to huge shopping malls (like Albrook) packed with low-cost brands.
Our Central America Photo for May features a fruit empanada. While empanadas are usually savory, when stuffed with fruit they make perfect desserts.
Creative Commons photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/darling_clementine
Frogs are awfully cute. Especially the brilliantly colored frogs of Costa Rica's forests and jungles -- even when they're poisonous!
Located in Santa Elena, Costa Rica, near Monteverde National Park, the Monteverde Frog Pond is a fun stop for animal-lovers in general and frog-lovers in particular. The 45-minute tour of the Frog Pond (or "Ranario" in Spanish) is best done at night, since the attraction's tiny denizens are most active then.
Creative commons photo via http://www.flickr.com/photos/dejeuxx
We love adventures. Don't you? Whether we're talking diving with hammerhead sharks, ziplining through the cloudforest canopy, rappelling into a 300-foot-deep cavern, or climbing to the top of an active volcano, Central America is full of adventure travel opportunities.
Tikal isn't the only incredible Mayan archaeological site in Guatemala. From the remote, colossal El Mirador ruins in El Peten, to the staggeringly intricate stelas (tall stone carvings) of the Quiriguá ruins in the southeast, Guatemala holds the ancient heart of the Maya Empire.
Image by Bob Klingenberg
Our Central America animal for April is a pair of leaping bottlenose dolphins. Dolphins can be spotted on both of Central Americas coasts, the Pacific and the Atlantic (Caribbean).
Costa Rica is every surfer's dream destination -- as well as every wannabe surfer. World-class breaks, 80-degree water, great food, and friendly surf culture can be found all along the country's two coasts.
The best way to learn how to surf in Costa Rica (or how to surf better!) is to attend a surfing school or surf camp. Here's a selection of the top Costa Rica surfing schools and surf camps, all eager to impart their wave worshiping expertise.