Thursday, April 4, 2013

E is for El Yunque Rain Forest


EL YUNQUE RAIN FOREST
The first cruise  we took originated in San Juan, Puerto Rico so our group flew to San Juan and  boarded the Royal Princess Cruise ship, to  make our way through the Panama Canal. We started this vacation with a three day stay in San Juan to explore the area. One of our side trips was a visit to the El Yunque Rain Forest. It was my  first time  in a rain forest. I was not at all sure what to expect. The rain forest is managed by The US Forest Service. They maintain all the hiking trails so it is easy to take a walking tour through the forest. This is what we opted to do. It was hot and steamy. But lush and beautiful. I could not believe that I was actually seeing bromeliads growing in the wild. Did you know that pineapples are a type of bromeliad?  Such a gorgeous site to behold.

It was a low impact, easy walking tour. The guide was excellent. He pointed out the exotic parrots nests (although we never saw an actual parrot), the tiny orchids and all of the exotic foliage. We made a stop at La Coca Falls, which is known as the Puerto Rican fountain of youth. We were serenaded by the amazing sounds of tiny tree frogs known as Coqui whom are native to Puerto Rico. The sound is almost over- whelming. There must be millions of those little buggers.

We made our way up to the Yocahu observation tower, which allowed us to see a 360 degree view of the rain forest. But let me tell you...hiking in the forest will take it out of you.(I was a pack a day smoker back then) I was sure I would never make it all the way up to that observation tower. I am glad that I persevered as the astounding view was worth it. And the trip back to the visitor center wasn't nearly as stressful.

Yakahu Tower in El Yunque National Forest
Yakahu Tower in El Yunque National Forest (Photo credit: vxla)


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26 comments:

  1. That is so beautiful. Rain forests are so peaceful. I love the little frog. My blog name is paddatjie blog, and paddatjie means little frog in Afrikaans.

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    1. Amazing! I will come for a visit.

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  2. That looks absolutely amazing! WoW!!

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  3. Wow, look at the waterfall. How perfect!
    Dani @ Entertaining Interests
    #warriorminion

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  4. Beautiful! I love the froggy!!

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    1. I can see that you do by looking at your profile pic! Are you trying to find the Prince!

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    2. My prince is the one who took the picture. lol It was a great statue that just asked for that picture to be taken. It's probably one of my favorite pictures of me.

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    3. I was thinking that as I was looking at the picture: You have to kiss a lot of frogs! Cute

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  5. Forests are so serene, so ancient, so wise.

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  6. That waterfall is simply gorgeous!! Now I'm in a tropical state of mind

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    1. I live in a constant tropical state of mind. Right here in land locked Kansas

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  7. This looks like such a beautiful and peaceful place to visit.

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  8. Gorgeous places! so lush and green

    All the Best with the rest of the challenge.

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  9. Stunning pictures!! Thank you for visiting my blog!
    Connie
    A to Z buddy
    Peanut Butter and Whine

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    1. Most welcome! I am enjoying getting out and about!

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  10. What a fabulous trip. Thanks for sharing.

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  11. I love the little frog! It's so cute.


    Jessica @ Visions of Other Worlds
    Twitter: @jmarcarelli, #atozchallenge

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  12. El Yunque is one place that I wish we'd gone when we were in PR. Maybe next trip :)

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