Thursday, December 22, 2016

Costa Rica Installment #5 - La Paz Waterfall Gardens (28-29Nov2016)

The grande finale of this awesome trip was to the La Paz Waterfall Gardens and the Peace Lodge.  We figured it would be nice to be pampered the final night and that way we would be within 45 minutes drive of the airport for our late morning flight.  For those of you that have never been, La Paz Waterfall Gardens is a beautiful tourist destination with waterfalls, hiking, butterfly garden, hummingbird garden and what I guess is a zoo although the exhibits seem to hold animals that are much more content than the ones I have seen in most zoos.

The Peace Lodge is a group of casitas on the premises of the Gardens.  It is very plush and a little over the top but nice none the less.  The bed is a big four poster with hanging silk drapes and the shower is a stone cave with a waterfall instead of a shower head.  There was a hot tub on the porch but we favored the big heated pool with waterfalls in the common area.  The boys loved it and so did Melissa, so that was nice.

Of course there was birds too....

Common Chlorospingus

Buff-throated Saltator

Common Chlorospingus

The following Butterflies were in the covered butterfly house so I am not attempting to ID them as they won't count on my life list.  However, they are beautiful and deserve at least some mention.

This one seemed to like Melissa's bright shirt.

On the first day there I spent a ton of time hunkered under some shelter in the hummingbird garden while it rained...

Violet Sabrewing

Black-bellied Hummingbird

Coppery-headed Emerald

White-bellied Mountain-gem

Purple-throated Mountain-gem

Black-bellied Hummingbird

Green-crowned Brilliant

Magnificent Hummingbird

Violet Sabrewing

Brown Violetear - I only saw a few of these.

Purple-throated Mountain-gem female or juvenile.

Female Sabrewing

I only saw a Green Thorntail fleetingly a couple times.

My brother Raf found this Torrent Tyrannulet while hiking with his family and was nice enough to show me the way.

Brown Violetear

In the morning first thing we spotted some birds on the trails that were difficult to get in decent light.

Tawny-throated Leaftosser

This Nightingale Thrush could have been one of two species and my photo is not good enough to know for sure.

Tawny-throated Leaftosser again.

Chestnut-capped Brush-finch

Three-striped Warbler

Gray-breasted Wood-wren

Prong-billed Barbet

Olivaceous Woodcreeper

Not sure but I think another Collared Trogon.  Could be the Orange-bellied too.

I believe this is a Ruddy Treerunner.

Gray-breasted Wood-wren

Slaty-backed Nightingale-Thrush

Oh and there was a frog house too...

I think this was the Jumping Tree Frog or at least that is what the guy showing us around said.

The famous Red-eyed Tree Frog

This one I think is the Tiger-legged Tree Frog.

Grrr, I forget this species but they were mating.

Back out in the gardens....

Squirrel Cuckoo

Green Thorntail

Coppery-headed Emerald

Crimson-collared Tanager

Baltimore Oriole

Black-cowled Oriole

Buff-throated Saltator

I hope to make it back to Costa Rica again soon.  What an awesome place.  Pure Vida.

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