Thursday, May 30, 2013

Mountain Biking in Naturewalk

Naturewalk is the home of mountain biking in Costa Rica and mountain biking will be available through the Naturewalk adventure center

Below are some photos from a mountain biking event in Naturewalk on the 18th of May 2013

Monday, May 27, 2013

Views from the river whilst kayaking and canoeing in Naturewalk

Kayaking in Naturewalk

Kayaking in Naturwewalk, just one of the activities available through the Naturewalk Adventure Center

Friday, May 24, 2013

Meandering mountain stream in Naturewalk

One of the many small meandering streams in Naturewalk. In addition to these mountain streams Naturewalk has 2 rivers (the Tulin and Naturewalk rivers), 6 large waterfalls and dozens of smaller waterfalls

Naturewalk riding horses

A couple of the Naturewalk riding horses take a break on a tour of Naturewalk

Delta to offer non stop flights from Los Angeles to San Jose

US major Delta Air Lines is to launch a new link between Los Angeles International Airport and Juan Santamaría International Airport, the primary gateway to San José the capital of Costa Rica.  The final agreement for the new route, which has been under discussion for a number of months, was formalised during the recent Routes Americas forum in Cartagena, Colombia.

Read more about this route here on routes online

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Costa Rica, when are you planning to visit

New App teaches about Costa Rica biodiversity

What am I looking at?
A new app developed by the Costa Rican Electricity Institute
and the National Biodiversity Institute helps users identify wildlife species.

By the Tico Times

Interested in Costa Rican biodiversity? A new app claims to be the easiest way to find out about Costa Rican species.

TOUIT is an easy-to-use guide that allows users to access information about 500 species commonly spotted in Costa Rica, with high-resolution images, information and maps.

Using Geopositioning tools, the app finds a user’s location, then coordinates and issues a list of the most common species found in that particular area, including amphibians, mammals, reptiles, birds, spiders, scorpions, plants, insects and fungus.

The app was launched this week by the National Biodiversity Institute (INBio) and the Costa Rican Electricity Institute. It works on mobile phones using Android and iOS operating systems.

TOUIT takes its name from Touits costarricensis, a bird that flies from sea level up to 3,000 meters.

“The main goal of the app is to educate people about Costa Rican biodiversity so that they know what we have and [can] help to preserve it,” Maria Auxiliadora Mora, INBio’s information technology manager, said.

TOUIT is free and is available in English and Spanish versions. Download it at

Read more about this app and the full story on the Tico Times

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Naturewalk Yoga Center, Opening in December 2013

Tiquisque, Naturewalk 3

Marciel, Naturewalk root crop farming consultant inspects tiquisque on Naturewalk 3. Although only recently planted, it is taking root and growing well

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Saturday, May 4, 2013

DIY Coconut Milk

coconut milk

Sweet, sweet coconut milk.

Coconut milk: it’s delicious, it’s nutritious and it’s expensive. At upwards of $4 a can at the local supermercado, chances are this superfood doesn’t fit very well into your meal budget – tragic, considering how perfect it is for sweetening coffee, livening up soups and thickening smoothies. Luckily raw coconuts only cost about a dollar a piece, and just one can yield the equivalent of 1.5 to two cans of their store-bought counterparts.

Plus, if you make your own milk then you won’t have to deal with preservatives like BPA or guar gum in the linings of the cans.

What you’ll need
*Blender (a food processor will also work but will yield smaller batches)
*Nut milk bag (If you live outside of San Jose you probably have no idea where to get this. A plastic coffee filter or cheesecloth will also work just fine)
*Knife with slightly rounded tip
*Mason jar or other storage receptacle
*Microwave (optional)

1. First you’ve got to crack that sucker open. Some people like to use hammers, cleavers or machetes for splitting – but I like to use a hard surface like a rock, or one of the concrete steps outside of my house. Now pretend the coconut is the earth, find the equator and slam it in the same spot until it cracks – then start turning the coconut (still hitting it along the equator) until it splits completely apart. (*NOTE* you want to use mature, ripened cocos for this, not green unripened pipas. You can pick them up at the Automercado for about a dollar).

Tips for selecting the best possible coconut:
*Find the cocos in your local grocery store or fresh food market (NOT the pipas in the refrigerator!). At Automercado you’ll usually find them below the bananas.
*Try to select one that is a healthy orange-brown hue. The darker the coco, the more likely it’s gone bad.
*Make sure there is a good bit of water sloshing around in that thing.
*If you buy multiple cocos at a time, separate them when you get home. I’ve noticed that much like avocados or bananas, if one goes bad it quickly spreads to the others.
coconut knife pic

2. Remove the meat. For first-time coconut connoisseurs, this will be no easy task. But don’t fret, it gets easier with time (just use a dull knife if you’re accident prone). The meat inside the shell should be firm and white, not mushy or slimy. If it’s green or smells funny throw it away. If the meat is stubborn, pop it in the microwave for a minute or two until the meat expands from the shell a bit (keep an eye on it, if you leave it in too long and you’ll get toasted coconut). Let it cool. Try again. Some shells are very resistant and require a few trips to the microwave. If all else fails, cut the meat out tiny square by tiny square. Patience is a virtue...

3. Blend, blend, blend. Now that the hardest part is over, cut the meat into small pieces. Put them in the blender or food processor with the water from the coconut and as much additional water as needed to blend smoothly. Blend, blend and blend, adding water as you go.

4. Strain. Carefully strain, squeezing if necessary. Be careful not to let pieces of coconut flakes fall into the finished product. If you like your coconut milk watered down, reuse the flakes with more water. If you like it thicker, add more fresh, unprocessed coconut.

5. Store. Put the milk in a mason jar, and take photos to show off to your friends on Facebook. Notice how the cream rises to the top -- scrape it off if you want just the cream, or simply shake the jar to mix everything together again before use. If you’ve made more milk than you can consume before it goes bad, pour it into ice cube trays and stick it in the freezer. Then you can pull them out as needed in convenient single-serving sizes.

In addition to tasting divine, coconut has all kinds of health benefits. It contains lauric acid, a triglyceride known for its microbial properties and its ability to increase good HDL cholesterol. It is also rich in manganese and phosphorus, iron and magnesium – making it great for your bones. It is also very filling, and can help maintain blood sugar levels.

What to make with your freshly-made coconut milk:
Piña coladas
Coconut curry
Coconut coffee
Mashed sweet potatoes

Pulp: Save the coconut pulp and toast it to put over ice cream. Or make dark chocolate bark out of it by mixing it with a melted 80%+ cacao dark chocolate bar and putting it in the freezer. Or make coconut flour if you have a dehydrator.

Water: When opening a coconut, I like to catch the water and drink it instead of blending it for coconut milk – even though it’s not terribly sweet. There are probably some health benefits in there. Electrolytes, maybe?

Shell: If you manage to crack the shells evenly and cleanly remove the meat, the shell halves makes for  practical change holders or ashtrays. Or tropical coconut bras. Use your imagination.

For more pics, see Genna Marie Robustelli's website at

See the full story at the Tico Times website