Ecuador

After spending part of our morning enjoying the Ruta de la Tortuga, we continued to stroll around the Darwin Research Center in Puerto Ayora on Santa Cruz Island. This is a working research lab so there are several buildings that are just for the scientists, as well as some areas where public lectures are given. Self-guided exhibits are available to learn about what goes on there, the indigenous plant life, the incredibly rich marine life, and more. We chose to...

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Our first full day in the Galápagos dawned a bit overcast, but a very comfortable 75 degrees F (24C). Our hosts at the Sueños provided us with a delicious breakfast of eggs, cheese, a slice of ham lunchmeat, fruit, granola, yogurt, papaya juice and coffee. Wonderful way to start the day! In keeping with our quest to enjoy the islands without spending a fortune, we filled up the hydration packs in our backpacks and set off for the short walk...

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We planned our trip to the Galápagos taking advantage of one of the tips I mentioned in the previous article about saving money and maximizing your time - we arranged to fly into the Seymour Airport on Isla Baltra, and back to the mainland from the airport on Isla San Cristobal. Isla Baltra is a small, rocky, and desolate little island, separated from the larger and more verdant Isla Santa Cruz by the narrow Itabaca Channel. Not that there are...

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For people around the world, a visit to the Galápagos Islands is a common “bucket list” destination. Unfortunately, visiting this unique but out-of-the-way spot can be a very expensive proposition. For example, a family of four visiting from North America may find that between airfare to Ecuador and then on to the Islands, entry fees, accommodations, tours, meals, etc., that the cost of a Galápagos trip can easily approach or even reach five figures, forcing it to remain a dream...

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As some readers may already have seen in this blog, other articles, or in social media posts, after six wonderful years of living in Ecuador Rita and I decided to move on. Our beachfront condo in the resort city of Salinas has been sold. We have relocated our US property from West Virginia to Tennessee, a state with no income tax on retirement and a more forgiving and temperate climate, and are preparing for a new lifestyle starting in 2020....

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Rita and I recently returned to our home in Salinas on the southern Pacific Coast of Ecuador after our longest time away in the last five years. Between taking care of some business in the States, attending the International LivingBoot Camp Conference in Santa Fe, and enjoying Thanksgiving with family, we were away from home for nearly four months. Once we returned to Ecuador, it didn’t take us long to remember the number one reason why we chose to live...

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We are about to leave Knoxville, Tennessee to return to our home in Ecuador, and this time it is a little bitter-sweet. You see, the sun may be setting on our Ecuador adventure. We have our oceanfront condo on the market now, and if all goes well, we hope to have a buyer before the high-season is over. Salinas, Ecuador It is not that we don't love it in Ecuador. In fact, after living there for five years we love...

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Once you have made the decision to move to a foreign country, the next thing most people start to think about is “what should I bring with me?” This is an important question, but like most decisions when it comes to moving abroad, the answer is different for different people. When we decided to move to Ecuador, my wife and I shipped a 20-foot container. But I know several expats who brought only a couple of suitcases and are just...

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There's a moment of clarity, just before you begin, when you think calmly to yourself, "Why am I doing this?" Then the calm is shattered by sheer terror as you are flung out over the abyss. Now your brain is screaming "WHY AM I DOING THIS?!" This was my experience with the "Casa del Arbol" in Baños, Ecuador. Sometimes called "the Swing at the End of the World", this site was made famous by a 2014 photo taken for a...

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I could feel the urge building over the last few weeks, and then this Sunday, it finally happened. I woke up with a raging gumbo-ner. I just had to make my favorite New Orleans meal. Gumbo is not something to be taken casually. It is not one of those "one pot" dinners that you can "whip up". To do it up right, you really need to dedicate the whole day to preparing one meal. Sure, there are "quick and easy...

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