Wedding Decorations in India

We attended in January 2023 a spectacular wedding in Hyderabad, India. There were five events for the wedding and the decorations at different venues were all unique, elegant, and colorful. The decorations at these events were at a different level, but reflected the normal festive spirit of celebrating Indian weddings.

The first event was the Welcome Party where family and friends of the groom and bride introduced themselves and had an outdoor party with live music.

Welcome Party Decorations
Decorations at Padmaja Palm Groves

Costa Rica Food Exports

The top three food exports of Costa Rica are pineapples, bananas and coffee.

It was interesting to see blue covers on the bananas. The use of a banana fruit blue ripening bag can improve the quality of the fruit as well as increase the yield, and in many case reduce the ripening time. The ripening fruit gives off a gas that in turn speeds up the ripening of remaining fruit. Covers also help to protect the fruit against insects and other animals.

Top Three Food Exports

Costa Rica – Trees

Saw a couple of unusually tall and big trees in Costa Rica. Nicknamed the “tree of life,” baobabs play a key role in their ecosystem. They help keep soil conditions humid, promote nutrient recycling, and prevent soil erosion. And, they are an important source of food, water, and shelter for various birds, reptiles, and insects. I had to take three shots for a closer look at the tree. Saw the second tree at our hotel. Couldn’t identify it but it was definitely large.

Baobab Tree Composite
A Giant Tree

Coffee Plantation Monteverde

With high altitudes, fertile volcanic soil, warm temperatures, steady rainfall, and tropical climate, Costa Rica is uniquely positioned to produce superior coffee beans with fine aromas and flavor. A Coffee Plantation Tour in Monteverde is a chance to experience first hand the tradition that is the growing of coffee in Costa Rica. 

Coffee Plantation Monteverde

Monteverde Cloud Forest Vegetation

Monteverde’s green oasis is the pride and joy of ecotourism in Costa Rica. With cloud cover that hangs at the canopy, the cloud forest is fascinatingly different from the tropical rainforests that are spread across so much of Costa Rica. Common examples of vegetation include lichens, orchids, and bromeliads, all of which are abundant in Monteverde, Costa Rica. Cloud forests also tend to host a large number of endemic species, as their unique climates and specialized ecosystems create habitats that are not found anywhere else on Earth.

Canopy Tour Vegetation
Jungle Vegetation

Canopy Tour Monteverde

Monteverde or “Green Mountain” as it is directly translated is aptly named for its extensive reserve of lush, verdant cloud forests in Costa Rica. For those who want to explore the mysteries of the cloud forests, the most popular way to discover this unique area is by trekking across walkways built in the forest canopy – or gliding along a zip-line! The walkways were originally constructed for scientists seeking to learn more and discover new creatures.

Canopy Tour Monteverde

Kayakers at Lake Arenal

Kayakers enjoy a pleasant time on Lake Arenal (Costa Rica) with breath-taking views of the Arenal Volcano and may observe different species of birds like the “Flycatcher,” “Kingfisher,” “Great Blue Heron” and “Anhinga” and may also possibly hear and see Howler monkeys up in the rainforest trees that surround the lake!

Kayakers at Lake Arenal

Arenal Volcano

Arenal Volcano is an active andesitic stratovolcano in north-western Costa Rica around 90 km northwest of San José, in the district of La Fortuna. The Arenal volcano measures at least 1,633 meters high. It is conically shaped with a crater 140 meters in diameter. The Arenal Volcano became famous because it consistently spewed lava, gas, and ash until it went into a resting phase, in 2010. Although you can no longer see lava, the perfectly symmetrical volcano it is still impressive. Clouds obscured our view but it still seems magical.

Arenal Volcano

Lake Arenal Costa Rica

Lake Arenal sits at the base of the Arenal Volcano in the northern highlands of Costa Rica. It is the country’s largest landlocked body of water, with a surface that covers nearly 33 square miles (85 square km) and a depth that reaches some 200 feet (60 m).

In 1979, Lake Arenal was enlarged to three times its original size with the construction of a hydroelectric dam. Nowadays, Lake Arenal’s dam is hugely important to the country, as it produces nearly 12% of Costa Rica’s electric energy.

Lake Arenal

Costa Rica Green Iguana

The green iguana is a reptile that is found mainly in rain forests of northern Central America, several parts of Costa Rica, Mexico, the Caribbean Islands, and southern Brazil. Adults can range in color from green to brown to almost black. During breeding season (Late fall/early winter), mature male iguanas take on an orange coloration, along with their heavy jowls and dewlap, in order to attract mates.

Costa Rica Green Iguana

Flora of Costa Rica

Costa Rica has the greatest diversity of plants in the world. With close to one quarter of its landmass being dedicated to protected areas, there is absolutely no shortfall of incredible aquatic or terrestrial plants, flowers, and other epidemic species of plant life that even expert biologists will enjoy and be amazed.

The Poor-Man’s Umbrella (bottom left) is an herbaceous plant that has a stem that can be up to twelve inches in length, and leaves that can be three to six feet in diameter. The leaves have five main veins that allow them to disperse water to avoid the growth of fungi and mold, and the fruits have one seed each.

Flora of Costa Rica

Costa Rica Flowers

Costa Rica has an incredible abundance of flora which is protected by a large system of national parks.  It boasts more than 9000 species of flowering plants and about 800 species of ferns, as well as many other species which are spread throughout the country. The national flower of Costa Rica is the purple country girl, called Guaria Morada in Spanish. It is a stunning orchid shining with purple hues and thin, rounded petals. Based on Tico tradition, the flower brings good luck and fortune.

Costa Rica Flowers

Flowers of Costa Rica

Costa Rica is one of the biologically wealthiest nations in the world.  While the country has only about 0.25% of the world’s landmass, it contains almost 5% of the world’s biodiversity.  Costa Rica, which means “Rich Coast,” has the largest percentage of protected areas in the world.  From the forested mountains to the coral reefs off both coasts, this small country treasures an incomparable diversity of flora and fauna. Costa Rica boasts more than 9000 species of flowering plants and about 800 species of ferns, as well as many other species which are spread throughout the country.

Flowers of Costa Rica