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2 weeks vacationing and diving in Belize

May 27, 2010 - Filed under Other, Scuba Diving, Stuff to do, Underwater Photography

On our way up to Mexico for our friends’ wedding, we stopped off in Belize for 2 weeks to relax and do a little more diving. Having only dove Roatan in the Caribbean, we were looking forward to diving another location for comparison.

When we arrived in Placencia, we didn’t realize it was coming into low season and rainy season. For most of our 2 weeks, it’s rained a little on some days and a lot on others. We’re also often the only people in the beachfront resort hotel we’re staying in. So we’ve had a staff of 10+ taking care of us each day as we lounge by the pool when the weather cooperates.


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Posted by: Shim

From Roatan, Honduras to Placencia, Belize

May 24, 2010 - Filed under Travel

After 3 months in Roatan, it was time for us to get back on the road again. We are headed up to Belize for a little vacation from our permanent vacation. So we’re closing the laptops for a bit, taking a break from checking emails, and working on our tans which are surprisingly weak after this long in the tropics!…

We packed up our things (including 50 lbs of new dive gear) and headed out the door to catch the 7am ferry from Roatan back to La Ceiba. An hour later we were in a taxi headed to Puerto Cortes, north of San Pedro Sula. We had to stay overnight in Puerto Cortes and booked one night at the Brisas Hotel on Coca Cola beach (named for it’s proximity to the bottling plant). Puerto Cortes was a little thin on entertainment, so we splashed in the pool, had a bite to eat, and retired early along with a new frog buddy who apparently lived in our sink.


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Posted by: Shim

Scuba Diving in Roatan, Honduras

May 24, 2010 - Filed under Scuba Diving

When we were planning out the Central American leg of our trip, visiting Roatan was high on the list of destinations. We’ve often heard what a haven for scuba divers it is, both due to the location (a quick 2 hour flight from Miami) and the cost. Roatan is one of the cheapest places to get dive certified in the world and the fun dive prices are also amongst some of the lowest.

When we arrived in Roatan, we found a range of dive shops. From small shore based dinghy operations and speed boats, up to large 20 person capacity boats that will do day trips all over the island. We decided to go with Coconut Tree Divers, one of the larger, central shops which was close to where we were staying. They’re the only shop in the West End that do 4 dives a day which fits well with our shifting schedules during busy work weeks. They’re a highly social bunch and we had many good stories and nights out with our dive masters and fellow divers. They really went out of their way to make sure we were well taken care of from gear to dive site selections.


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Posted by: Shim

It’s a scuba diver’s scene in Roatan, Honduras

April 28, 2010 - Filed under General, Scuba Diving

We arrived in Roatan in early March just as the last of the seasonal storms were coming through. Scouting out a place to stay for a few months we found a large range of options and locations but we quickly focused on 3 areas on the west side of the island due to their proximity to grocery shopping, beaches, entertainment, and dive shops. The island is quite hilly, so a car or scooter would be a necessity in many areas if you don’t want to be taking a taxi 10 times a day.


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Posted by: Shim

Costa Rica Budget

March 29, 2010 - Filed under Planning, Travel

Costa Rica was definitely more expensive than a lot of the places we’ve been over the last year and a half. That being said it also offered the most convenience and more modern amenities than anywhere else… which I suppose could be a plus or a minus depending on what you’re looking for. For us it was just what we needed. After a year on the road, and a particularly busy three months we were quite happy to find a nice place to rent and stay put for six months.

Before I jump into the numbers part of this post I want to remind everyone that we’re not budget backpackers. Yes you can do Costa Rica a lot cheaper than we did, but since this isn’t just a vacation for us, it’s a lifestyle, we often make choices that aren’t inline with other travelers priorities.

A comfortable place and a decent internet connection are always first priority on our list of requirements, which often means we stick to more touristy places and don’t venture off the beaten track as much as other travelers. When we arrived in Costa Rica we both had a lot of work lined up and knew we’d be spending the majority of our days online, so it was even more important than usual. Read More…

Posted by: Kelly

From Tamarindo, Costa Rica to Roatan, Honduras

March 15, 2010 - Filed under Other, Travel

After 6 months, our time in Costa Rica has come to a close. Last week we woke up early to take the 5am shuttle to Liberia from Tamarindo. Around 9am, we boarded a Ticabus headed to Managua, Nicaragua. A few hours later, we arrived at the Nicaraguan border to find a HUGE line. Spending the next 3 hours frying our brains in the sun while we waited to get our exit visas, then another hour waiting as the Costa Rican DEA randomly selected our bus for a screening, and then another hour getting our entry visas in Nicaragua. During all this, the Canadian men’s final hockey game was going on… something we had realized only a few days earlier. Oops, bad scheduling on our part and we had hoped to make it to our destination on time to catch it. But we did meet a few people on the bus and chatted the hours away.


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Posted by: Shim

Costa Rican and Nicaraguan Beverages

March 11, 2010 - Filed under Drinks

In Costa Rica it’s safe to drink the water, but why would you when you’ve got all these other choices? ;) Costa Rica has one major brewery called Cerveceria de Costa Rica which is owned by the Florida Ice and Farm Co., but they brew a variety of beers locally. And there’s a few other canned beverage alternatives too. It’s the local custom to have your beer in a glass with ice, but as gringos we rarely had to ask for it without (‘sin hielo’).

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Posted by: Shim

Handmade Souvenir in Costa Rica

March 5, 2010 - Filed under Stuff to do

We don’t tend to buy a lot of souvenirs. They’re heavy and they take up too much space. We also don’t do a lot of sight-seeing. We don’t visit temples or museums and very rarely go on tours. Some might say we’re pretty crappy tourists. Instead we capture most of our “souvenirs” in the form of photos, and experience a place’s culture by doing things that are activity-based rather than passively seeing “the sights”.

On our last week in Tamarindo, I ended up with the first souvenir of our year and a half on the road. I took a pottery class and learned the traditional art of making Chorotega Pottery.

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Posted by: Kelly

Scuba Diving at Playas del Coco

February 11, 2010 - Filed under Eats, Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography

Since arriving in Costa Rica nearly 6 months ago, we haven’t been scuba diving much compared to the 80+ dives we did last year in Southeast Asia. We did a 2 dive trip to the Catalina Islands from Tamarindo a couple months ago where we saw a few eagle rays, a school of jacks, and 3 or 4 white tip reef sharks, but the visibility was really poor and with the Papagayo wind in full effect since then, we haven’t attempted another dive until this last weekend when we decided to take a quick trip to Playas del Coco.

We got on the local bus to Liberia at 9am which meanders in and out of each town on the way to it’s destination; picking up and dropping off school children, workers, and food and drink vendors as it goes. Liberia is approximately an hour away from Tamarindo by car, but the local bus takes anywhere from 1.5 hours to 2.5 hours to get there. We got off the bus before Liberia at the turn off to Playas del Coco (shortly after Filadelfia) and switched buses. Our next bus came along within 45 minutes and we continued on through Sardinal. Within a half hour, we had completed our 3.5 hour journey arriving at Coco.


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Posted by: Shim

Nomadic Professionals – Interviewed by The Professional Hobo

January 18, 2010 - Filed under General


Kelly was interviewed by Nora Dunn from theprofessionalhobo.com not too long ago as part of her ‘A Week-In-The-Life of’ series. People sometimes assume that because we’re living in a tropical destination, we must be semi-retired, or that we’re always hanging out on the beach or diving… Truth be told, it’s been a very busy few months work-wise since we arrived in Costa Rica. For a closer look at what went on in an average week when we arrived in Costa Rica, have a look at Nora’s latest post here: A Week-In-The-Life of Kelly & Mike: Have Internet Will Travel

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Posted by: Shim