It took longer after this trip to put the gallery together with a lengthy flurry of activities and first of year requirements, but my Christmas Trip of 2023 December 22-28 — San Gerardo de Dota, Hotel Savegre is ready to visit with all my birds, other wildlife, flowers and landscapes ready to view!Continue reading “The Savegre Trip Gallery Finished!”
That’s right! I’m back to sharing photos from my Christmas Trip to Hotel Savegre in San Gerardo de Dota. I think I shared some shots of the grounds and a “broad look at the gardens” which are some of the best of any hotel in Costa Rica. Well now that I’m not as super-busy as I have been since Christmas, I’m going to finish the gallery for the Christmas Trip to Hotel Savegre! And this posts introduces the sub-gallery called: Savegre Individual Flowers where I just deposited 57 photos of individual flowers! And here is one of my favorite . . .
Enjoy the flowers and if you missed it, go to my photos of the Broad View of the Gardens of Savegre.
Google sent me this map showing everywhere I went in 2023 and that motivated me to make a little travel map for my planned 5 trips in 2024, which again is a slight decrease from the previous year as I slow down a little – but not too much! :-) I really need to get to different parts of Costa Rica to maintain a variety in my nature photos! Though all of these 5 lodges for 2024 are favorites I’ve visited before, they are all good and will yield a lot of photos! :-)
I make many of my reservations nearly a year in advance because of the popularity of most of these and they fill up fast! (Especially Christmas Week!) One example is that I tried to get in Selva Verde Lodge Sarapiqui in March and there was no vacancy! But I’m glad I will go back to Villa Lapas near me instead, while it is still locally operated, because in the next year or so it will become a Marriott and thus much more expensive and who knows if it will be better or worse? It is next door to Carara NP and the Tarcoles Crocodile Safari Boat tours that I like and they have now added a jungle tree top bridge and other activities, along with their pretty good birding reserve. We will see what happens in the future with Marriott. :-)
Including local obviously and the 4 points on the Caribbean side are one trip that include separate flags for 2 national parks, the airport & the hotel. And the 6 flags in the north represent 4 trips. :-)
2024 Planned Trips
Somehow I missed scheduling Corcovado, Osa Peninsula or the South Pacific this year, but that puts it at the top of the list for 2025! :-) And to see what my trips and places are like, visit my Costa Rica TRIPS Galleries. If you are planning on a trip to Costa Rica, you can tell a lot about some of these lodges and parks by the photos I post there for each trip.
Buenos viajes para . . .
No big surprise for those of us who live here, but Costa Rica was named as the #1 Travel Destination for 2024 by Travel & Leisure Magazine AND the International Living Magazine and organization simultaneously named Costa Rica as the #1 Best Place to Retire in 2024! Read about it in Travel & Leisure. Or on International Living website.
For someone who made what a few American friends back in Nashville thought was a radical or crazy decision to move here in 2014, these announcements confirm the good decision I made back then! :-)
And these rankings are a good celebration of my 9 years of living in Costa Rica (as of December 24, 2023 — 2+ weeks ago). And my survival of cancer a celebration of the excellent healthcare here! Plus there is no better place for a nature lover and nature photographer like me! Tell your nature-lover friends to follow my blog to see what it is like to be “Retired in Costa Rica!” :-)
Just one photo that is linked to my Trip Gallery Grounds & Gardens Sub-Gallery with more photos and then in a few days I will share some really beautiful flowers, but this week has become overwhelming and I will be a few days later processing my flower photos with a guest from Canada here, medical lab work tomorrow at the National Hospital de Geriatria in San Jose, a trip to a new nature reserve for me Thursday with my Canadian friend and removing all my stuff from the Galería on Saturday. A really full week! But I see tranquility in next week! :-)
I’ve completed one more chunk of my Christmas Trip Gallery, the BIRDS Gallery with 20 species and some of my better bird photos including 5 species of Hummingbirds! You can click the gallery first page image below this one bird photo or just go to this web address: https://charliedoggett.smugmug.com/TRIPS/2023-December-22-28-San-Gerardo-de-Dota/BIRDS
For locals in Atenas:
This is my last week (Jan. 8-13) in the Gallería Artenas! (At Plaza Calle 2 next to Linea Vital.) So if interested in any of my photos there or the Floral Accent Pillows, this week is your last opportunity to shop for them in person, in town, except the Photo Greeting Cards which starting next Sunday, January 14, will be available at Hotel Colinas del Sol, with everything else available only online through my Gallery, – – – Bookstore, or – – – CafePress Shop.
From now on I will consider my nature photography as my fun and for this daily blog post, with any online sales and the Colinas del Sol greeting cards as “incidentals” to my fun hobby! No more gallerías, arts & crafts shows or physical selling for me! (Which, by the way, has always been tiring and at a financial loss for me.) Now I photograph only for fun! :-)
To me, every bird is a work of art and thus I try to make each photo of one a work of art, though I do have some ugly photos just to document seeing a species! :-) This common Rufous-collared Sparrow was seen a lot at Hotel Savegre this trip and I have a trip gallery of Rufous-collared Sparrows that will soon become a part of the Trip Gallery for this 2023 time at Savegre. And of course in my big birds gallery there’s a larger Rufous-collared Sparrow GALLERY with birds from this and other mountain lodges and even one at a hotel in San Jose and it includes my very first photo of this species from my 2009 trip to this same hotel (then a smaller mountain lodge) which is interesting, of a mother feeding her chick a worm, if you don’t consider that gross! :-) And you can read about this tropical bird on eBird. It is found only in Central and South America. The scientific name is Zonotrichia capensis.
Indigenous to Central America, this colorful Tanager is found only in the mountains of Mexico to Panama, from 1000m up to the timberline, on both slopes, Pacific & Caribbean. Read about him (red-orange) and her (yellow) on eBird. And you can see all my photos of this species in my Flame-colored Tanager GALLERY. I’ve seen them only in San Gerardo de Dota (3 locations) on the Pacific Slope and at El Silencio Lodge in Bajos del Toro on the Caribbean Slope. Here’s one male and one female photo . . .
This distinctive little woodpecker is one I have seen only one other time, in 2015, and it too was in San Gerardo de Dota, that time at Mariam’s Cabinas, now called Quetzals Cabinas. You can see that shot and all my decent ones this year from Savegre in my Acorn Woodpecker GALLERY. It is found only in the mountains above 1500m, from California south through Central America to Columbia.
With 6 species, it is not my highest yield lodge for butterflies, but I did get 3 new species! They are: Lotus Ruby-eye – Perichares lotus, the Tailed Sulphur – Phoebis neocypris AND the Zabulon Skipper – Poanes zabulon with the other 3 repeats for me and mostly more colorful! :-) For the first time I got a Monarch and the Monarch Caterpillar on the same bush! That caterpillar is not shown here because I categorized him with “Other Wildlife.” :-) Here’s one photo of each of the 6 species presented alphabetically or you can see more in my developing Trip Gallery, Butterfly Sub-Gallery. Here’s one pix each of the 6 species seen:Continue reading “Butterflies at Savegre”