Arenal Volcano & Night Hike

We woke up at 4:30 am and most of us have not slept since! HOW are we still in such high spirits?! Because today was incredible!

Just over half the group joined me, Kyle and Kat at to hike up to the vantage point up the volcano at 5 am! We had hoped to see the sunrise, though the creepy BirdBox-esque fog had other ideas. (The students are watching Birdbox as a group right now) It was a much steeper incline than we expected, but the group trudged on until we got to our destination! Despite being able to only see what appeared to be a view from a horror film, Kat still led us in an incredible series of yoga stretches that got us ready for the day.

On our (seemingly much faster) hike down, a few students stopped to get changed in time for breakfast at 6:30 am. Students spent time visiting all the animals the resort had to offer in addition to making the most of their morning by visiting hot springs and dipping in the pools. We left Los Lagos slightly later than planned… but it turned out to be entirely serendipitous, as we were able to see the very top of the Arenal Volcano for the one and only time since we’ve arrived! Kyle brought out his drone to capture the occasion, and every student took numerous selfies…as did the staff. We all had to commemorate such a special occasion!

three male students with Arenal Volcano in the background

We then loaded up into our previously described super cute turismo bus and headed for the lush mountains of Monteverde. It was a beautiful day for a stunning drive, and although a few students slept… most of them had a 5-hour extended karaoke session! I think we’ve got some great ideas on how the students would like to spend their final night. The minute we arrived in town, we threw our bags into our rooms in our adorable cabin hotel and shot right back out to end the day the same way we started: with a 2-hour hike!

Our guides were entirely in tune with the forest and were able to tell us about every sound and every tree. They handed out flashlights to every student and we bravely went into the woods. We learned about strangler figs, the most ruthless but also coolest trees in the forest, that vanilla is an ORCHID and more spiders than I think most of us cared to see in our lives. We continued on and saw a tarantula, numerous beautiful sleeping birds, two different types of fireflies (green AND yellow) an agouti, a scorpion, a tiny red-eyed frog, a viper… and a SLOTH! Obviously, you were all crossing your fingers for us, so we thank you, as it clearly paid off for your children. At the end of the very successful hike, the students were ready for some grub.

group of students in front of night hike tour sign

Ravenous with hunger, we came back from our 2-hour end of day hike and the students went directly to dinner. Our new chefs at the hotel were even ready for us a few minutes early: a good thing, because I know a few students were beginning to feel hanger (yes, not hunger, as in HANGRY) pains! We were treated to another fresh and delicious typical Costa Rican meal. Some students finally hit a wall after dessert, and were barely awake for announcements! We made the decision to have a family-night in in our incredible rec-room and played cards, watched movies, and played tell-istrations. It’s like broken telephone… but with drawings! Please ask your teens to tell you about it! The whole crew had an absolute blast.

Tomorrow we’re off to Life Monteverde and I can’t even start writing about how great it will be because I’ll get overly excited and have nothing to write tomorrow. We made reservations for “The Treehouse” in downtown Monteverde for tomorrow night for the entire crew after dinner. Basically, we’re spending every minute as Drake would: YOLO.

…and now we’re going to do bed checks and make sure everyone gets a good night’s sleep. Luckily we can sleep in tomorrow! That means breakfast is super late, at 8 am.

Hoping it’s getting warmer back home as your children enjoy the weather here,