The town of Nuevo Arenal where my family and I are staying offers a spectacular view of the Arenal Volcono right from our sidewalk! With the closing of rainy season, we have been able to enjoy a clearer view of Arenal Volcano’s peak along with its striking conical shape. One of our recent adventures was traveling to La Fortuna where we were able to see a close view of the volcano (picture above), shop in town, and visit the Catarata La Fortuna Waterfall. I will share our adventure along with pictures in a future blog entry.
Since the Arenal Volcano is such an important landmark to the local area, I decided to learn more about its history. It was interesting to learn that Arenal is the most active volcanoes in Costa Rica and one of the ten most active volcanoes in the world! The largest recorded eruption in Arenal’s history occurred in 1968. This explosion happened abruptly after being inactive for 400 years and destroyed the small town of Tabacion as well as the original Arenal town. Since the 1968 eruption, Arenal has continued to erupt on a daily basis.
Learn more about the Arenal Volcano: http://www.costarica.com/places-to-see/volcanoes/arenal-volcano/
Everyday we enjoy walking into town to get our fresh vegetables, fruits, meat, and bread. The small town of Nuevo Arenal offers a selection of souvenir shops, mini markets, a grocery store, gas station, restaurants, cabanas (rooms for rent), and banking services. Now that the rainy season has ended, we can better enjoy the outside. The breeze here is so refreshing and the sunshine gives us our daily dose of vitamin D. In town we have a nice time meeting locals and many Americans living in the area.
My favorite daily stop is the local farmers market.
The local bakery is my mom’s and sister’s favorite place to shop. Everyday they buy fresh bread and pastries.
My mom discovered that the grocery store does not sell spaghetti sauce in a jar to put on our eggplant. She made it from scratch by using tomatoes from the farmers market, onions, a box of tomato sauce, and oregano. We also added sautéed zucchini on top as well. My mom substituted rice for noodles on my dish because I’m on a gluten and sugar free diet.
Most people have an alarm system or bars on the windows, but we have neither. Here my mom is stringing up our “cow bell” alarm system. With a little bit of creativity anything is possible.
Elizabeth’s Traveling Tips: For internet access in Costa Rica we purchased what we call our “blue stick”. This little stick contains a chip that is our key when it comes to communicating with the outside world. If you are not a resident or corporation you have to prepay at the grocery store. The fastest costs 10,000 colones which in American money would be $20.
Because we were unaware the blue chip on our pre-paid plan is limited access, we used up our $20 dollars in 7 days!