Day 5: College of Nursing Student Meghan Hixenbaugh Reflects on the Rainforest, Finding New Medicines and How this Tiny Nation Provides Healthcare for All!

Today we did really cool cultural visits. After the clinic in the morning, we went zip lining at Sky Adventures. The views we saw were absolutely breathtaking. Zip lining allowed us to see Costa Rica from a completely new view. The landscapes were absolutely gorgeous. It was something I will never forget. The zip lining was a little nerve-racking at first because we were so high up, but it was completely worth it to see the beautiful landscapes.
After zip lining, we walked through the rainforest and went on the hanging bridges. This was yet another stunning experience. The hanging bridges were a beautiful way to see the inside aspects of the forest. We could only go 10 people at a time across the bridges for safety reasons. Our bus driver, Chino, was such a great tour guide as we walked through the rainforest. He taught us about the various plant life and animals of the rainforest. For example, I learned that there is a type of tree that has adapted to “move” 3 millimeters in a year to be in areas with more sunlight. We also learned this morning at the Clinic that it is “snake season” in Costa Rica, and as we were on our walk Chino pointed out a baby snake. Chino also did this exercise with the group that I really enjoyed. He asked us to close our eyes and not talk for a minute to just listen to the sounds of the rainforest. This was so nice because I wouldn’t have done on my own. The sounds were really cool to just listen to. We heard the birds, the crickets, and the various other animals of the rain forest. Overall Chino gave us a great tour with lots of information about the wild of the rainforest. We learned that the rainforest actually helps us find new medicines.
After walking through the forest and going on the hanging bridges, we went to the Baldi Hot Springs. These are naturally occurring hot springs from the volcano. There were 25 different hot springs to go to. Some were bath water temperature, while others were too hot to stand in for more than a few minutes. There was a naturally occurring sauna we went into as well. It was really hot and I was so surprised to learn that these can occur naturally. The Baldi hot springs were a nice way to relax after the busy day and week we had. Overall this was a day full of super fun cultural visits. Having the chance to see the tourism side demonstrated how Costa Rica is able to have the health care system they do because they get the money from all the tourists.

2 thoughts on “Day 5: College of Nursing Student Meghan Hixenbaugh Reflects on the Rainforest, Finding New Medicines and How this Tiny Nation Provides Healthcare for All!”

  1. thanks for sharing—I love closing my eyes and listening to the sounds in any new place I travel to–it is meditation–DR. Brown

  2. Snake season sounds intimidating, so I’m glad you had an experienced local guide!

    -Kate Manni, Education Abroad Office

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