I’m in awe of the vibrancy of El Salvador—its beauty and its people. I can’t say enough good things about the five days that I spent there.
El Salvador is about the size of Massachusetts and goes from the coast to about 7,000 feet. There are more than 20 volcanoes, many towns filled with color and interesting buildings, beautiful coasts known for their surfing, scrub forests and dry lowlands, and cloud forests in the mountains.
The roads are fantastic and you can start your day hiking in the clouds, zip down to the coast for some fresh seafood for lunch, and end up in lakeside towns enjoying the views and fun around the plazas. Plus there are great birds and nature, spectacular vistas everywhere you go, archaeological sites and museums, lodging and food for every single budget and taste (and I sampled it all!), and wonderful people to meet with incredible environmental initiatives.
I met new people each day, thanks to many introductions from Benjamin and JJ who ventured with me the entire time, and it felt like hanging out with friends in their hometowns. I was especially impressed by women I met who were tour guides and owners of hotels, restaurants, and organic farms. All of the guides were not only showing off their country but also providing education and activities around nature in their communities, plus collaborating on local conservation initiatives like protecting wildlife corridors and spreading awareness around wildfire prevention.
No idea how I managed to squeeze all that into just a few days. I’ll write more about the birds and nature in the photo captions, but to say the least, El Salvador exceeded all my expectations. Can’t wait to plan my next trip to explore the country more!
Thank you Juan, Rosa, Marisol, Eliberto, Victor, Sonya, Rafael, Rhina, Manuel, and especially Benjamin for taking the time to show me your wonderful country!
PS. I also had the pleasure of dropping off binoculars and a camera from the first annual Birding Co-op Optics Drive to support this group of conservationists. They’ll be shared by many guides and naturalists around the country. If you have working optics you no longer use, please consider donating them to the next Optics Drive this summer to support people and initiatives like this one!