Crossing the equator, Ecuador

Time seems to be flying, we’re now in the ninth country on our travels as we arrived into Ecuador. We can’t believe where this time is going.

Quito

 Another long bus ride took us to the capital Quito. Here we enjoyed exploring the colourful old town as we walked from iconic buildings to small craft making shops, honey producers and ice cream makers. The Ice cream here is made and sold on the streets, small stands have a large copper pans which sit into a bucket of ice. Sweets are made with the huge array of easily available fresh fruits like passion fruit and coconut. You can watch them make it straight in front of you, it’s a must to try.

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Money, money, money – how much do I need for traveling Colombia?

We loved Colombia and would highly recommend it to everyone. The people are so friendly, there is a lot of interesting history to dive into, be it art, culture, or the infamous drug cartels, it will keep you reading for weeks. The landscapes are stunning and the prices are very low. This is no doubt one of our favourite countries. There is just so much to see, you can jump from the coast, to hiking in the mountains, to lakes, waterfalls even a desert (well sort of). We felt we could have spent so much more time in this country and will no doubt regret we didn’t, but we’ve chosen to leave some attractions for Ecuador and the rest of South America where we will be visiting the Amazon and then onwards. As you’ve probably realised from our blog we are trying to fit a huge trip into a small time frame, so we’re having to get pretty picky about how we’re spending time. Anyway if you have a month and your wondering where to go I will put this at the top of your list.

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Discovering Medellin and Guatape, Colombia

Welcome to Colombia 

We arrived in Colombia, a country we were sceptical about visiting due to its notorious history. We bordered our night flight from Panama City to Medellin and some how departed half an hour early, something unheard off. We were even allowed to bring our 1,5l bottle of water on board! The Security seems very relaxed compared to Europe. Our flight left early evening, we were able to see an amazing sunset as we waved good bye to Central America, on to our next adventure.

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Spendings In Central America 

We can now summarie our travels, we spent 80 days in Central America visiting every country except for Honduras, we averaged $32 a day per person. This includes every penny of spending from the attraction costs, accommodation, transport, food (our big expense) as well as our flight to Colombia. Costa Rica ended up being the most expensive country, followed by Beliz and Panama. On the other end Mexico and Guatemala were the cheapest with El Salvador and Nicaragua in between. To note, we spent quite a few nights couch surfing and hitchhiking, especially at the beginning, so our spendings might not always be the most accurate.

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Last stop in Central America

Our last stop and excited to finish the Central American leg we headed into Panama, spending just under 2 weeks here, before continuing our travels and flying to South America. We split our time between the islands of Bocas Del Toro and Panama City.

Bocas Del Toro

Situated off the northern point of Panama is the archipelago of Bocas Del Toro. We spent a week here, taking a step back from are busy travels to chill and soak in the sun on these picturesque beaches.

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No budget in Costa Rica 

Costa Rica was the most expensive country so far this trip. We ended up spending almost $50 pp a day. This time transportation was our biggest expense since we hired a 4×4 for a week. We ended up spending $322 for the hire and fuel. This was half the actual cost as we traveled with another couple. It was the best decision ever, since it allowed us to see a lot of places in a really short time frame. Also public transport in Costa Rica isn’t ideal, Buses are expensive and don’t come as often as in other Central American countries, sometimes as little as twice a day. Many tourist attractions are well of the beaten track where public transport doesn’t run, or work time wise. Accommodation made for number 2 since we only stayed in hostels and hotels this time with no use of Couch Surfing, although we were still able to find reasonable accommodation.

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7 day car adventure in Costa Rica 

First day with a car and a/c and o my god we cannot even imagine what are we going to do when we will have to return it. A huge contrast form the cramped, hot, sweaty public transport we’ve endured for the last two months. Now with a set of wheels the now inexcessable locations through public transport were possible. We are so thankful to get to meet Dee and Brink, a South African couple, living in Australian and traveling around the world on their honeymoon. It was so lucky, that we all wanted to see similar things and were able to team up to enjoy Costa Rica together. It was lovely to travel in a bigger group, share past experiences and find out that we have pretty much been following each other since Mexico.

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Budget blowing Costa Rica

We arrived in Costa Rica over 10 days ago and what a trip its been. Its taken untill now to have the time/ internet to sumeries what we have been upto.

Not planning sometimes leaves us in bad situations. What was only a short trip between the Nicaraguan island of Ometepe to Liberia, Coasta Rica was one of those nightmare journeys. Not having internet for some days before, we weren’t able to check or make plans. Getting to the border of Costa Rica and not realising we needed an out going ticket to enter the country costed us an expensive last minute ticket choice.  Continue reading