Splette's Travel Blog
  • Photos
  • May15th

    My 2014 trip to Costa Rica and Panama is over and I’m back in good old Germany. Today I finally uploaded some of the photos to my Flickr account: Check them out here.

  • April23rd

    Puerto Viejo beach at sunset
    After a few days on the Pacific coast I went spent a long weekend in Puerto Viejo on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica. This time I wasn’t traveling alone, though. Rodolfo (also known as Fofo), one of my oldest Tico friends from the time I was living here was accompanying me. It’s Easter weekend and because the Easter week (Semana Santa) is the most important celebration of the year in many Latin american countries exceptional circumstances apply.

    A baby crab digging a hole at the beach

    Baby crab digging hole

    On Easter Friday there was no public transportation at all and by law it’s forbidden to sell alcohol (thankfully, popular tourist spots consequently ignore that law). For Costa Rica Easter also means that everyone is heading for the beach, so it can be extremely difficult to find a place to sleep unless one books weeks in advance – which is so not my style. so we had quite a hard time finding any kind of accommodation. Even the tents and hammocks were booked out.

    I was chasing this crab around. Eventually it was hiding behind this door.

    Bigger crab

    Eventually, Rodolfo got hold of a large hostel that isn’t listed on any of the hostel-booking websites and still had two dorm rooms available.
    We left San José on the first bus at 6am in the morning and arrived in Puerto Viejo about 5 hours later. Most of the Caribbean region of Costa Rica is quite beautiful (so is its Panamanian counterpart Bocas del Toro just across the border) and there’s something for everyone. Puerto Viejo is more of a party town at the beach. A few kilometers down the coast is Punta Uva which is much quieter and even further South is the chill village Manzanillo, a vibrant outpost of Afro-Caribbean culture.
    We stayed at Rocking J´s, a large and surprisingly well-organized hostel (for Costa Rican standards) about 10 min walk out of the city center and right at the beach. The hostel had a good and relaxed vibe and was mostly frequented by European backpackers. Next to our room was a bunch of Israeli surfer boys and we shared the room with two Dutch girls – and that baby cockroach that I found in my bed. Rest in peace little cockroach.
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  • November4th

    my travel photos on flickrI decided to join Flickr and host my photos there. They store the photos at a higher quality (and variable size, depending on your screen resolution), you can search pictures by tags or keywords and leave a comment on individual photos.

    Today, I finally uploaded the last pics of my two-year journey. The photostream of my trip now contains 563 items. Check them out now!

    PS. The photo gallery on this blog is incomplete.

  • December18th

    As you may or may not know, I am making a living and pay for my travels with my science illustration work. It’s not exactly making me a rich man. So, I am always looking out for alternative ways of making money. No, don’t worry, I have dismissed the idea of smuggling cocaine in my anus across the Colombian border… But it has always been my wish to generate some income from my traveling. Writing has never really been my thing (despite this blog), I am more of a visual person. And I have taken tons of photos this year. So, I was thinking of offering some of the nicer ones on a stock photography site.

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  • December12th

    Picture time

    Posted in: Photos

    I uploaded a whole bunch of photos. Check them out at the photo page. There are still a few from the US and Colombia missing.

    Update: The Colombia photos are now online.

  • November1st

    Click here if you prefer to watch the video right on Vimeo.

    Finally! For those of you that have little time, I created this video – fast forward slideshow with ~600 photos in just 99 seconds. I hope you are not epileptics and enjoy. Don’t forget to turn on the sound.

    And hey, if it’s too fast, you are too old 🙂

  • September4th

    On the rope I descentI am in La Fortuna, Costa Rica, a small town close to volcán Arenal. While the active volcano is hidden in clouds most of the time and too dangerous to climb, there are plenty of other outdoor activities. I went on a waterfall rappelling tour (or ‘abseiling’ how the New Zealanders would call it). You trek along a small river through the forrest with several waterfalls that you climb down on a rope.

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  • September1st

    Punta Uva beach in Costa Rica. Not sure if this photo does justice to the actual beauty of this place.

    Punta Uva beach: sand, palm trees, blue sea

    After spending a month in the San José area, most of the day on the laptop to earn some money for the rest of my trip, I really needed a break; get away from the computer screen and the city for a bit. So, I decided to visit the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica of which I heard plenty of good things. A four-hour bus ride later, I arrived in Puerto Viejo, a small village on the Caribbean that is overrun by party-hungry college kids, potheads and a couple of surfers. Looking for something more quiet and laid-back, I decided to settle a few kilometers further down the coastal road in Punta Uva at the ‘Casa Viva Beach Houses’. Not the cheapest place but the cabins were just a few meters away from a gorgeous beach. There were never more than a handful of people at the beach – but a few thousand sand flies. It felt like I got bitten by every single one of them. The water was great. I haven’t been swimming in the sea for at least a year.

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  • June29th

    Yep, it's that pretty

    Semuc Champey

    It’s only my third day in Guatemala and I made it to Semuc Champey, a very beautiful but somewhat remote area of the Cahabòn river in central Guatemala. The place only opened as a tourist destination about a year ago. There is little choice of accomodation here and backpackers seem to be the only visitors. That’s a good thing. Our hostel ‘El Portal’, the Mayan owners and tour guides and even the other travelers are great. Marissa, my temporary travel companion from Chicago, and me decided to book the full package here. Crystal-clear blue water terracesIn the morning we went for a steep hike up the mirador, a lookout over-viewing the entire crystal-clear blue river. Waterfall at Semuc ChampeyFrom there we hiked down to the river and across the different terraces, which involved lots of jumping from one level to an other, sliding and diving into a tiny underwater cave. All in all very beautiful and exciting. Back to the hostel for lunch break and then going for some tubing along the river. The descent current and big rocks to avoid made that more fun than I expected.

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  • June12th

    One big tree

    Posted in: Nature, Photos

    Since I was a kid I wanted to see a giant sequoia tree with my own eyes. Had to wait a while but finally got to see some in California now. The tree behind below is ‘Grizzly Giant‘ in Yosemite National Park is one of the largest and oldest giant sequoias in the world.

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