We’ve just spent two weeks in Florida, out and about in the sun-kissed state: from kayaking in the Everglades to island-hopping in the Keys and biking in Miami. It’s been great to be outdoors, getting active and exploring lesser-known parts of the state, but most of all, we loved having the opportunity to take a break from work and kick back completely.
This summer promises us more time under the sun and on the beach: For the next leg of our trip, I will be heading to the island nation of Palau in Micronesia, while Alberto is off to Riveria Maya in Mexico this week. Since the beginning of the year, we’ve been traveling hand-in-hand through Asia, Africa and America – this will be the first time in several months that we’re traveling separately, we’ll see how that goes. Both trips will be packed with adventure and underwater fun, and they look perfect for us. Here’s a more detailed look at what we’ll be up to:
Nellie’s First Trip to Micronesia
I’ve been dreaming of going to Palau ever since I saw photos of its legendary Jellyfish Lake (known for its millions of golden jellyfish). Palau is an island country located in the remote western Pacific Ocean, with a population of only 21,000 people spread out over 250 islands. We’ve yet to explore this part of the world, and now thanks to Visit Palau, I’ll be making my first trip there.
We’re starting off the journey with a kayaking tour around the Rock Islands, a small collection of mushroom-shaped coral isles in Palau’s Southern Lagoon. There, we’ll be swimming in the world-renown Jellyfish Lake, which I’m most looking forward to. Other sights we’ll be visiting include Clam City, home to colorful clams that age up to almost a hundred years, as well as a dip in a Japanese zero fighter plane. I’m also looking forward to scuba-diving off Koror as I’ve heard that Palau has some of the best dive sites in the world.
Apart from the city of Koror, we will also hop over to the island of Babeldaob onboard a jungle river cruise. A Pre-WWII Japanese mining and farming land, Babeldaob is intertwined with muddy dirt roads, rivers, and pristine rainforest. Off Road Eco Tours will take us on extreme driving expeditions through the island’s waterfalls, WWII relics, abandoned old villages and stone pathways.
The highlight of the trip is probably going to be our meeting with President of Palau, Honorable Johnson Toribiong. I’m extremely honored to get the chance to shake hands with the president, huge thanks to Visit Palau for setting this up!
Both Flickr photos above by aSIMULAtor
Alberto Goes Wild in Riviera Maya
While I’m all the way in the Pacific, Alberto is flying to Riviera Maya along the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico for some wacky adventure. The Riviera Maya DMO has set up an action-packed itinerary, including a Mayan jungle expedition in the heart of a sub-tropical rainforest where they’ll enter the Sac-Actun cenote system, the world longest underground river. There, they’ll also be snorkeling in the Nohoch Nah Chiich cavern, ziplining across the jungle foliage and rappelling into the beautiful cenote Yaxmuul.
At the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, they’ll visit one of the largest coastal Mayan archaeological site, before trekking through the jungle and catching a boat ride through canals constructed by the Mayas to favor the trade. As the third largest protected area in Mexico, the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve comprises 1.3 million acres of tropical ecosystems, consisting of lowland forest, flooded savannas, mangroves, and a portion of the world’s second largest coastal barrier reef.
Another exciting part of the itinerary includes a visit to Río Secreto, the longest partially flooded cave in the Yucatan Peninsula. Before 2007, almost no one had entered Río Secreto except for the man who first found it. To end the trip, Alberto will be taking a spin on a Ferrari or Lamborghini with Exotic Rides – I can just imagine his excitement!
Both photos above by RivieraMaya.com
We will be back with several updates along the way, be sure to leave us some travel tips. Meanwhile, we’ll be writing more about our experiences in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Florida and more, keep reading!
Disclaimer: Our trips were made possible by Visit Palau and Riviera Maya DMO, but all opinions expressed above are our own.