Part 15: La Paz Waterfall Park


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The Trip

We spent the night at the Peace Lodge at La Paz Waterfall Park.  This is a nice place and caters to foreign tourists, mostly gringos.  We spent the day exploring the things at the park.

The Photos

The photos below are what we saw.

There were a set of waterfalls and an infinity pool across from our little casita.

Interestingly, they have a fishing pond stocked with trout and you can fish for your dinner.  The trout in the restaurant is indeed fresh, we had it for dinner two nights in a row.  The other bungalows were built into the side of the mountain.

I was waiting for Kathleen and decided to explore the area around the trout pond and spotted these vultures who hang out there.  I talked to the "fishing attendant" and he said that they have taken a liking to trout guts and he has a special place to throw them and the birds have gotten lazy and just wait until he cleans the catch then cash in on the left-overs.

We were in the bottom floor of the 4 unit casita across from the aviary and trout pond.

When Kathleen was ready, we headed out in earnest and passed right this vulture sitting on the fence like he owned the place.  Note the can-opener beak; great for piercing through carrion flesh!

One of the trails by our room headed down to a small creek then to the main waterfalls.

The trail went along the river before the cataracts.

The jungle was dense and the vines hung off the trees nearly to the ground.

Next to the path we spotted this interesting flower.

The trail took us back to the facility via the Frog House.  We saw several frogs there, but they are experts at hiding.  This one was nearly invisible due to his color match with the plants.

This fellow was small: about the diameter of a quarter.

This one was even smaller, only about the size of a dime.

One our way to the waterfalls we passed a historical farm exhibit.  These cattle are yoked for work, but note that they cannot move their heads at all.  Their horns are lashed to a crossbar.  Their pens are behind them in the photo.  Note the size of their ears.

The trail to the waterfalls was steep and heavily trafficked.  The facility is one of the most visited of any place in Costa Rica due to its proximity to San Jose.

The first waterfall (of 5) was impressive.  But, it would be MORE impressive during the rainy season at full flow.

Above one of the falls before the water heads into the abyss.

The next fall was quite high.  You can judge from the size of the people at the overlook on the left of the photo above.

We were told that there had been a wedding at the falls and these flowers were left over from that event.

The next fall was quite high and was throwing a ton of spray onto us (and the lens of my camera).  Note the person on the walkway close to the water about 1/4 from the top of the falls.  This was a big waterfall.

Three falls were visible from the lower lookout point including the small one on the right.

From the lookout point we could see the bridge on the highway below.  We traveled this road to get to the park.  The road is steep, narrow and has very tight turns with a number of one-lane bridges.  The bridge that crosses the La Paz river is new.  The old one was damaged during the earthquake.

The flow below this fall was augmented by the flow from a small side creek.

The next to the last fall was throwing plenty of mist into the air.  Note the people on the top of the falls.

From the lowest lookout point we could see the folks below.  These two pezotes have the tourists wrapped around their snouts.  They were begging for handouts.

The waterfall trail is concrete the whole way but it is very steep.  It is steep enough that they have a cut-out trail to allow folks to head to the road and take a shuttle bus back to the top of the canyon.  We elected to walk back up and it was a killer; we were soaked with sweat.  When we got to the top, we headed back to our casita via the Butterfly House.

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Photos and Text Copyright Bill Caid 2014, all rights reserved.
For your enjoyment only, not for commercial use.