Posted by: Thida | February 16, 2012

La Costa Norte, La Moskitia y Las Islas de la Bahia

“Where have you been? What have you been doing?” I get it! I’m back! I’m sorry! I’m writing again.

I’ve been busy: traveling, working, cooking, being sick, procrastinating, working, running. Yes! I ran for the first time since I’ve been here. But this is not the point of this blog post…

Now, a quick update on my Christmas vacation, which now feels like ages ago!

I traveled with my colleagues/friends, and I had a special visit from some friends from Montreal, including my boyfriend Jason.

Jason and I during our trek in La Moskitia. Picture taken by Morgan

We did so much! It’s impossible for me to describe it all. So being true to myself, I’m going to give you just a few highlights, and lowlights, of my trip (in point form of course!).

Itinerary:

San Lorenzo –>Tegucigalpa (1 night) –> Tela (2 nights) –>La Ceiba (3 nights) –>La Moskitia (4 nights) –> Utila (3 nights) –>Roatan (4 nights)

Where I've been during my vacation. See the red circles

Food Highlights

  • Eating a gigantic baleada in La Ceiba where they are originally from. Discovering baleadas with avocados — just too good!
  • Eating fresh “pan de coco” (coconut bread) in Tela.

Little girl enjoying her coconut in Tela

  • Eating a traditional Garifuna meal on Chachauate cay (Cayos Cochinos). Fresh fish, plantain, fish soup, rice and beans. Delicious!
  • In La Moskitia, a remote area in the North East of Honduras, trying to make fritas – a wheat flour dough, fried, served at breakfast – with a local Miskito lady and making her laugh because your fritas look so pathetic.
  • While on a trek in La Moskitia, seeing pigs in a village and joking about how funny it would be to choose one and to cook it for dinner. Not realizing that your guide is taking you seriously and is starting to negotiate a price with the locals. The next day, having pork for your Christmas Eve dinner.
  • While getting off the plane in La Moskitia and unloading the plane (it was a very small plane), inadvertently taking someone else’s frozen turkey (we didn’t steal it! It was a mistake!). On Christmas Eve, eating a stolen turkey and wondering if the real owner is in big trouble because he lost his turkey.

Food Lowlight:

  • Getting food poisoning after eating a plate of caracol (conch) in Tela. Not a good way to start a vacation. Blah!

Travel highlights

  • Trying scuba diving for the first time in Roatan. What a feeling!
  • Snorkeling in Utila and swimming with beautiful, colourful fish.
  • Biking through Garifuna villages around Tela. Seeing children playing on the beach, jumping in and out of the water.
  • Seeing huge crocodiles and howling monkeys in Cuero y Salado Wildlife Refuge, near La Ceiba.

Cuero y Salado Wildlife Refuge

  • Rafting down the Río Gangrejal in La Ceiba.
  • Spending the day on Chachauate cay (Cayos Cochinos). Arriving early in the morning,  hours before yachts filled with tourists dock the island, and realizing how lucky you were of having quiet, privileged time with the locals.

Fisherman and his helper on Chachauate cay

  • In La Moskitia, riding on Río Platano in a pipante (a wooden canoe) and fearing your canoe is going to flip over because of the heavy rain and strong current. Witnessing a scene straight from National Geographic with spiders, ants, cockroaches going out of control and trying to crawl in your canoes. (Is that really a highlight?)
  • Celebrating Christmas Eve in La Moskitia with the locals, with traditional dance and music.
  • Having the most wonderful guide with us in La Moskitia which played a huge part in making the experience so memorable. (I can’t help but plug La Moskitia Ecoaventuras tour company; they were simply awesome!)

Riding in a "pipante" on Rio Platano, La Moskitia

Travel Lowlight:

  • Walking in the tropical forest of La Moskita with rain boots that are too big for your feet; boots getting stuck in the mud; boots getting filled with water; feet hurting so bad that you’re not sure you can finish the trek. (I still LOVED La Moskitia).
  • After living such an amazing cultural experience in different parts of Honduras, being on a beach resort in Roatan and witnessing not so cool tourist behaviour.

The only good thing about ending a vacation is being able to plan for your next one. In my case, planning is already done!


Responses

  1. Hi Thida – so glad you are back at your blog! I’ve missed your wonderful vignettes and of course, missed hearing from you. I see you come on Skype now and again. We should connect sometime. What an adventure you’ve had. An so many stories to tell. The spiders and cockroaches trying to get into the canoe would be more than i could take!!
    Cheers,
    Lynda

    • Bonjour chère Thida, Merci de nous faire vivre, par procuration, ces moments de découverte et d’émerveillement. On pense à toi. Suzanne

      • Bonjour Suzanne! Merci de prendre le temps d’écrire un commentaire. Ça me fait toujours plaisir! J’espère que tout va bien chez toi. Bisous xox

    • Hi Lynda! So happy to read your comment. We should definitely connect via Skype! I hope all is well with you! xox

  2. Très heureuse de te lire… tes histoires m’ont manqué! Je suis contente de savoir que tu vas bien et que tu as passé des vacances aussi mémorables, en plus, en compagnie de ton chum. Quel bonheur! Tu vis une expérience unique, et si grandiose sur le plan humain. Je t’admire beaucoup.
    Prend soins de toi!
    Marianne xxx

    • Salut Marianne. C’est très gentil ton petit mot. Et toi, comment vas-tu? N’hésite pas à envoyer de te nouvelles. Bisous xox

      • Va sur mon blog si tu veux des nouvelles fraîches!!! Je vais te renvoyer le lien par couriel… XXX

  3. Hi Thida

    what an adventure … totoally envious, except for the canoe trip – I agree with Lynda, if I had been in the canoe with the spiders and cockroaches trying to get aboard that would have been more than I could take too!

    • Hey Suzanne. Thanks for the comment. I’m not sure how we were able to remain calm with all those bugs climbing in our canoes. I guess we needed to stay calm or else we would have flipped over! Hope that all is well with you. xox

  4. I too was missing your updates. And here I thought I had an adventure in Hawaii. Not quite the same. I’m so pleased you got a Christmas vacation and had many adventures and fun. I wondered if I dare try scuba diving when in Australia this fall. Maybe I will… You’re my inspiration….

    • Hi Janice! So great to hear from you. Hawaii?! That sounds so amazing. You’ll have to tell me more. You should definitely try scuba diving. It’s a little scary at first but it turned out to be a wonderful experience.

  5. Hahah. This post is so funny. So you really got a fresh pig eh? Is it difficult to roast a whole pig? Thoughts of a Julia Child episode I once watched come to mind. ;)

    The line about the frozen turkey (that you also ate) is quite hilarious as well. =P

    Hope you recovered quickly from the food poisoning!

    • Hi Lisa! We didn’t actually have to roast the pig ourselves. We let the local people do that. I think it was better that way! Yup, recovered fine from the food poisoning. So not fun. Thanks for writing! Much appreciated! :)

  6. what an amazing trip, Thida. Of course such trips come with the good and the bad (food poisoning or stomach discomfort always coming in to a greater or lesser degree!). Those baleadas look and sound very tasty – get’s my mouth watering.

    And like the other posters, great to hear from you again!

    • Hey Frances! Great to hear from you! I don’t sick often because of food poisoning but I wasn’t too lucky this time. Thanks for writing! Take care now!


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