After a few days at Isla de la Piedra we left for San Blas and anchored at Ensenada Matanchen. On the way we anchored for a few hours at Isla Isabel but felt that the conditions were too unreliable to stay overnight.
Here are a few pictures from Isla Isabel famous for its birds including thousands of Frigate birds and the famous Blue Footed Boobie.
After a few more hours of boat time we anchored at Ensenada De Matanchen just three miles south of San Blas. We spent one day taking the Jungle Tour on the Tovara River….. Ever seen a wild crocodile? In the middle of the trip there is an optional stop at the crocodile farm. Here huge American crocodiles enjoy snacks while basking in concrete ponds. Also at the crocodile hatchery are 5 jaguars. Both the Jaguars and the alligators are a little sad in their captivity, Your entry fee to this small zoo contributes to help save these endangered species.
We put a lot of work into our blog and as a result we have discussions with other cruisers about blogging. The consensus seems to be that the most popular sailing Blogs feature Bikinis, Videos, and How to articles. I’m not about to put on a Bikini, but here is a first attempt at creating a video to showcase the Tovara river tour. Let me know what you think. We are also planning some how-to articles on fascinating topics like rebuilding your steering ram, and designing a lithium Ion Battery system. Stay tuned.
Land your dingy on the beach and it’s a short walk to the River tour, but along the way there are many vendors selling of all things banana bread and fruit empanadas. The huge volume of baked goods present didn’t seem to match the number of customers. At any rate, warm banana bread with chocolate chips on top. Empanadas with a fruit filling but not too sweet. Warm with Vanilla Ice Cream OMG.
The next day we ride the bus to downtown San Blas, 14 people in a packed minivan, 60 pesos for 4 people. I ride backwards sitting on a hump in the floor behind the front seat. Seat belts…whatever. We tour the Mercado. The church in San Blas is right next door to its predecessor which is almost falling down. I wonder to myself about how the transfer of “churchdom” would have occurred. Was one building consecrated then the other deconsecrated…. In what order. On the same day? It must have been a big deal.
We hike up the hill to visit the fort from 1790, the “Contaduria”, a fort but also a counting house for the Spanish. Leave it to the occupiers, to make their conquered laborers haul all their loot up a steep hill for counting.
At the fort, having walked 13000 steps and feeling a little sweaty we call a cab. 80 pesos (less than 5 dollars) for 4 people back to the beach, where we launch the dingy for a ride to our floating home.