Hope you are all well and that it is not snowing too heavily in the UK. Poor Lou had a nightmare flight out... her flight from JFK was cancelled and in total she ended up with a 17 hour delay in New York airport (with no food or drink compensation - never fly American Airlines!) followed by 12 hours delay in Miami all due to the snow. Eventually we met up and started our travels together...
First we headed to Utila in the Bay Islands, Honduras. The setting was spectacular and the sea was so clear and beautiful. We checked into Ruby´s Inn - probably the best hostel in the world...and bumped into some really fun American friends that I had met previously in Guatemala and Belize. For the first two days the weather was perfect and we spent lots of time sun bathing and swimming in the sea. The second day Matt, Alexis, Lou and I hired kayaks to explore the north side of the island. We didn´t have the guide book with us, so guessed the way. The woman hiring the boats said the trip would only take 20 mins, over an hour later and when we were halfway through the VERY stinky thin mangroves where we could barely paddle because the trees were so close we decided we must have gone the wrong way but couldn´t turn the long boats around!! We continued on in the heat with lots of horrible sand flies and mosquitos eating us... Eventually we started to hear the sea in the distance so carried on for ANOTHER half an hour (getting a bit grumpy and tired at this point). However it was so worth all the pain and effort as when we FINALLY came to the end we were on a completely deserted beach which was just stunning! We climbed out and went for a little walk along the beach and found massive shells and lots of fish, crabs etc swimming in the rock pools. It was great - the only shame was that I didn´t bring my camera. After 40 mins or so we had to head back as it was late afternoon and we didn´t think we´d get back before dark. Strangely enough the journey back only took 30 mins, very bizzare and no one could believe it..all very wierd. I think on the way out we must have made lots of stops trying to figure out which way to go etc...
Utila has one of the most amazing bars that I have ever been to. It´s called Treetanics and goes on for ever! There are winding stairs and lots of different areas, platforms and coves everywhere. It is decorated with thousands of tiny mosaic pieces and is really impressive. Everyone we meet who has been to Utila keeps saying ´did you go to Treetanics?? Isn´t it amazing!´ it really is indescribable!
Sadly the next day a cold front hit and rain was forecast for the next 10 days (just checked the forecast - still raining). So we had to make the very sad decision to leave all our groovy friends in search of the sun (only after a fun final night out first though of course!). Lou and I spent 12 hours heading to Copan Ruins - good but I preferred Tikal with the jungle setting. However we did see some amazing brightly coloured parrots and the carvings at Copan are much more detailed. Then another two days were spent heading down to Nicaragua where the sun was hiding (I think at this point poor Louise was wondering why on earth she had come out to see me...). However, we finally arrived at San Juan del Sur - only 10 km from the border to Costa Rica. The sun (so far) is always shining, it is soooo hot that we have finally given in and upgraded to air con and the setting is really pretty. There is a bay with lots of boats moored and a Christ statue on the hill over looking the bay. We have been on a great sunset cruise, 7 hour sailing trip (INCREDIBLE) and zip lining today where we saw all the howler monkeys - so much fun! So, at last we are really making the most of the time that we have here! The sailing cruise was great. We went to a white beach called Costa Blanca and did some snorkelling. The crew were great and we had a free bar! We also had an inflatable boat so filled it with beer and swam to the shore to take part in hermit crab races - Lou´s crab won! After a few more beers Lou and I both decided that we were too tired to undertake the long swim back to the boat so hopped into the inflatable boat and our new German friend Harry pulled us back!!! So much fun!
Tomorrow we are heading to Ometepe which is an island on the Nicaraguan lake formed out of two volcanos so that should be good. Then we will spend a couple of days in Granda before my little sister very sadly will be leaving me to head home : (