Explore Central America with Under30Experiences
Under30Experiences successfully ran the first Explore Central America experience and this is what it was like.
This trip began in the rain forest of Costa Rica, moved to beautiful Costa Rican beaches, and then crossed the border to the Nicaraguan surf and beach town of San Juan Del Sur.
We could speak about this amazing adventure forever, but instead of hearing it from us, we’ll let Marion Bres, one of our travelers who joined us on the whole trip describe her experience below:
The Decision to Leave
From the moment I saw what their mission was and how amazing the trips looked, I knew I had to travel with this company. I was so overwhelmed by school and pressure at work, I needed to go somewhere I never went before, to disconnect from the madness of L.A, experience new things and meet people I didn’t know. I needed to explore the unknown. That’s how I decided to sign up for the first Explore Central America trip 8 months in advance, I was so excited about it that I was counting the months, weeks and days before the departure.
The Beginning of the U30X Adventure
On November 20th, 2015 I left Europe, took 3 different airplanes (yeah, thanks, American Airlines) and ran a marathon to go through U.S immigration and security check to get my connection in Miami on time to San José. I only met the first group the next morning at the airport and the other 5 people I was going to spend the entire trip with.
Our first stop was at Rancho Margot in the rainforest.
I was immediately amazed by the beauty of this place, where nature is everywhere and so well-preserved. We spent 5 days eating organic and delicious food, kayaking, zip lining, hiking, horseback riding, singing Disney songs in the middle of the night, dancing salsa and Macarena, and of course, we had the great chance to meet all the people working at Rancho Margot, who do an incredible job in this splendid environment.
The bumpy road and curves to get to Rancho Margot are nothing compared to the beauty of nature it exists there. And anyway, someone told me one day that it's all about experience, right Cesar?
Next Stop: Manuel Antonio
Then it was time to hit the road again to Quepos and meet a new group for the second part of the trip to Manuel Antonio. There, we enjoyed the beautiful beaches and amazing sunsets, hiked in Manuel Antonio Park looking for sloths and monkeys.
I also had my first surfing class and to be honest, was struggling a bit to stand on the board but I did my best. We also had the chance to eat delicious hand-made chocolate, cheese, and buy nice gifts (made in Costa Rica only, I insist) for our families and friends.
Visiting A Local School
And now let me share with you one of the most beautiful moments I’ve ever experienced in my life.
The group and I had the incredible chance to meet the children of the school in Portalon, Costa Rica. When our bus parked in front of the school, all the kids ran in our direction and welcomed us with big smiles on their faces. We spent the whole morning playing with them and I realized how much kids can have energy and joy in them!
I could really see in their eyes how happy they were to share this moment though they don’t live in the same conditions as we have back in our countries. It was a true and real moment of humanity, I will never forget all the happiness they gave me that day. And I’m sure we can do more for them.
The last leg of our adventure was the trip to Nicaragua.
We drove from Quepos, Costa Rica to San Juan Del Sur, Nicaragua. No doubt that crossing the border was an interesting experience! We finally met the third and last group at the hotel and we were ready to enjoy our last days in Central America.
The trip started with meeting entrepreneurial women from different communities in Nicaragua who told us about their stories and who have an impact on their society. We met more kids from another school and spent some time playing soccer, volleyball and cards with them.
After a day at the beach, we decided to head up to the Mirador del Cristo de la Misecordia, and the least we can say is that it was a pretty intense exercise but wow! the view was so worth it and we saw one of the most magnifique sunsets ever.
All good things come to an end…almost
We ended the trip like we started it: all together, on the beach with a bonfire, enjoying the last hours of our Explore Central America trip and thinking about the incredible experience we all had. And it’s not a coincidence if when arriving at the Managua airport the next day, we all sang "I've had the time of my life". Because we clearly did.
I know that one important thing that makes Under30Experiences so special and different is that it’s not necessarily what you do when you’re on the trip but what you learn and the changes or things you’ll do differently when you go back home. I guess that’s one of the great powers of Under30Experiences.
Thank you to everyone who have been part of the trip, for all the moments we shared, all the laughs, all the roses/buds/thorns and many more… Special thanks to Cesar, Eric, and Matt for everything and for being such awesome people!
Thank you Under30Experiences for creating those friendships, memories and this community of travelers. I had the most amazing trip ever, I enjoyed every minute of it and many more U30X trips are coming this year! ;-)
Now, you have all the reasons to go and Explore Central America! We recommend trying our Costa Rican 9 day adventure trip!
Pura Vida my friends!