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  1. #26
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Bozeman
    Posts
    836

    Ongoing nsr TR: Taking the tribe across the other Americas

    Not fighting with your wife is always a good move. Good choice!

    Your CR trips sounds great. Hope it all goes well.

    I'm not a big fan of Lima and try to miss it whenever I can. I'm not a city person but find it especially unpleasant.

    Lake Titicaca (~12,000 ft) is higher than Cusco (~11,000)/ Machu Picchu (~8,000). Machu Picchu, Cusco, and the Sacred Valley are so awesome they are worth visiting. If you go, fly to Cusco and then go straight to the Sacred Valley, maybe Ollantaytambo to acclimatize. There are awesome ruins there and it is a cool place to hang for a few days. Then go to Machu Picchu and end in Cusco.

    I used to guide treks in Torres del Paine (mid to late 90's) so have spent some time there. Puta Anus is not my favorite place haha, and I wouldn't spend to much time there. I think Torres del Paine is worth visiting as you will see guanacos, rheas (ostrich relatives), condors, and with a weather break great views. The lakes are beautiful and the peaks are stunning if you see them. Even if not it is cool. Hiking is definitely best but you can enjoy it without hiking. Maybe take turns watching the kids while the other hikes to the base of the towers. Take a boat out onto Lago Grey and cruise past icebergs and check out the face of the glacier.

    Disclaimer: All suggestions/advice are based on adult travel more than kid travel, as I haven't traveled to these destinations with kids. Plus, all kids are different so I won't presume to have any idea how any of this would go over with your kids. Listen to your wife and do what she suggests. Haha.

    Have fun and let us know how it goes!

  2. #27
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    1,115
    Little Cay:
    Last left off on Utila Jan 7th with Jade Seahorse. On the 8th we went back with the gopro mounted to my son's head because it was so awesome. Also the site of Treehouse Bar which is supposed to be world ranked. We bought $400 worth of groceries, produce, booze at Bush's supermarket and a couple others on the main drag for seven days on a deserted island. This is where we were going: http://www.utilacaysrentals.com/ , to Little Cay. We had some apprehension about safety, being alone on an island in Honduras but that was no problem. Barry, the owner, was on top of things and in a pinch delivered a bottle of good local rum one night. The house has solar panels and limited lighting as well as flushing toilets, a stocked kitchen, and running water from the catchment system. But the negatives were no hot water, everyone got sick while there, critters getting into kitchen at night, birds waking us up at 4:30 every morning, dealing with mosquito nets and stinky old sheets, etc. That stuff got old, particularly for the SO quickly. The island itself and the outside was stunning. Surrounded by pristine reef, pelicans hunting day and night, thousands of hermit crabs coming out every night, glowing fish surrounding the docks at night, green coconuts for the taking, nearby islands to explore, seawall and docks for kids to explore. Our kids absolutely loved it. Best things we did were to rent a kayak at Bush's to bring on the trip, a machete and g3 straps to make a coconut grabber, a solar shower and a mosquito netted hammock. There is charcoal there and a nice grill. Fishing guide picked me up there and found a couple bones but didn't catch any and it wasn't the mecca I was hoping for. The dive shop on Pigeon Cay will pick up there for trips and the ladies dove one day. Would be a great/unique diving hangout if you don't mid dealing with a little adversity and the house was big enough for 10-15 people.

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    One last word about Utila, if you go there, make sure to go to Camila's bakery. It was sublime. Their croissants were better than anything I get at home and she is making from scratch in a tiny kitchen. amazing for breakfast, the ladies loved it so much we almost missed a ferry back to Roatan over it at the tail end of our trip.
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    Day Man. Fighter of the Night Man. Champion of the Sun. Master of Karate and Friendship for Everyone.

  3. #28
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    1,115
    Back to Roatan

    Took the Utila Dream Ferry back to Roatan which was a rocky boat ride. Headed for Oak Ridge Cay at a vrbo next to Reef House dive shop. Highly recommend visiting that place, great vibe and wife liked the dive shop. They were welcoming of our crew for meals as well and the food was yummy. Resident parrot imitated my shrieking son at dinner which was equal parts embarassing and hilarious. Wadable flats and affordable guides as well. Caught my first bonefish, found a great guide, Jovie Bodden. If you notice, the sun is setting in the pic, he worked his ass off to get me that fish. Took some wades on my own and spooked some more bones. Parenting fail, letting my son jump around in the sharp coral of the ocean pool outside. Luckily his cuts are healing by now. It was freaking awesome to have a clean house, clean sheets all that after living on the island. Felt pretty safe there. Kids made some friends and that ruled for everyone involved. Managed to offload 25 pounds of unneeded gear to my cousin and sister who were leaving. we are still carrying too much stuff but improving to the point where we have two big backpacks and two small day packs for the four of us.

    The past three days we have been in the more touristy West Bay staying at Caribe Tesoro. Rooms are just okay but fantastic pool for little kids. The internet is fantastic though and we have been crushing travel plans and vrbo rentals the last several days. Helps that there is a family of 11 next door. They have a kid for every age to play with. Very cool, they are from Fairbanks but homeschool and travel months at a time during the winter. Makes us feel pedestrian! Tomorrow off to San Jose, CR then Monteverde later this week. After 21 days we are getting into the groove a bit
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    Last edited by kokomas; 01-20-2019 at 07:43 PM.
    Day Man. Fighter of the Night Man. Champion of the Sun. Master of Karate and Friendship for Everyone.

  4. #29
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    1,115
    Quote Originally Posted by WMD View Post
    Lake Titicaca (~12,000 ft) is higher than Cusco (~11,000)/ Machu Picchu (~8,000). Machu Picchu, Cusco, and the Sacred Valley are so awesome they are worth visiting. If you go, fly to Cusco and then go straight to the Sacred Valley, maybe Ollantaytambo to acclimatize. There are awesome ruins there and it is a cool place to hang for a few days. Then go to Machu Picchu and end in Cusco.

    I used to guide treks in Torres del Paine (mid to late 90's) so have spent some time there. Puta Anus is not my favorite place haha, and I wouldn't spend to much time there. I think Torres del Paine is worth visiting as you will see guanacos, rheas (ostrich relatives), condors, and with a weather break great views. The lakes are beautiful and the peaks are stunning if you see them. Even if not it is cool. Hiking is definitely best but you can enjoy it without hiking. Maybe take turns watching the kids while the other hikes to the base of the towers. Take a boat out onto Lago Grey and cruise past icebergs and check out the face of the glacier.

    Wow, why did I think that Machu Picchu was 16000 feet or something crazy. thanks for setting me straight. 11k in Cusco may still be too much but we are likely to go.

    So for southern Chilean Patagonia, is the general idea to fly to Punta Arenas, do three or four excursions and then fly out of the same town? looks like I can rent a car and drive to Puerto Natales. Will take your advice and put Torres del Paine back on the list. Isle de Magdelena, Tierra del Fuego and Cape Horn worth visiting too I assume? Can't wait to see the look on my kids faces when they see all the penguins at the Isle (need to check if its the right time of year...)

    Big travelling fail yesterday, showed up at Roatan airport with a one way ticket to Costa Rica and they needed proof of us exiting Costa Rica in order to board the plane. I had a flight to Lima scoped out and I had to race to book on the crappy airport internet or pay big surcharge at the Avianca desk. Got the internet to work just in time. I learned that we could book a refundable bus ticket out of CR as proof of exit so that would be good to do next time, although we couldn't get that together in time this time.

    Another note, flying Avianca is awesome. So civilized and they give you small meals and cocktails with your ticket

    Just made it to San Jose CR and are going to crush some paperwork from back home today before taking the public bus to Santa Elena / Monteverde tomorrow
    Day Man. Fighter of the Night Man. Champion of the Sun. Master of Karate and Friendship for Everyone.

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