Costa Rica – The Ultimate Tropical Vacation

Where to Travel This Winter? Costa Rica, Florida, or California

Are you in the process of choosing a winter escape destination and looking for some inspiration? How about some help in finding a super vacation that’s got more than you bargained for? Central America offers some extra special places such as Costa Rica, where you don’t just lay around recovering from your miserable commute, exhaustion, poor health, and dull daily work tasks.

No, instead, how about a vacation with no limits, endlessly fascinating, and lots for you, your friends and family to enjoy? You may even want to retire here.

The Red Eyed Tree frog is a national symbol. See more about eco-tours at

Here’s vacations that aren’t hospital settings, nor are they all you can eat and drink bar rooms or food courts. Whether you’re playing golf, doing an eco tour, walking a beach listening to waves crash, or trying out zip lining, mountain biking,  or kite surfing, you’re active and feeling alive.

Maybe these vacation posts will help you discover what’s missing in your life and how you can fill it with something exciting and fulfilling. Fulfillment is the ultimate determinant of your happiness. I hope these posts boost your desire to travel so that you might bring back what’s missing in your world. A lot of people are retiring in Costa Rica.

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Plenty of Warmth, Sunshine, Activity and Fun

Warm water, sunshine, soothing breezes, palm trees, beautiful scenery, and comfortable accommodations are the usual features of a winter vacation travel package. Those are nice basics, but is a vacation package complete without fun and adventure? No way. Fun and adventure magnify everything else you experience here, even your relaxation. That’s your choice. I’d advise spending 2 weeks at least on your winter vacation. Negotiate your vacation even if it’s unpaid time.

My most sage advice: Take your vacation and take your time because everything you think is so important right now will disappear. You will be damaging your life and career by not taking vacations.

Florida Keys, California and Costa Rica have all the leisure, rich food, alcohol, and beaches to lay around on, but they have so much more. These three amazing destinations are the safest places to visit and offer the greatest variety of relaxation and activity. You may argue that the hustle and bustle of touristy Cancun is more exciting but it’s like comparing sugar to a healthy salad. Costa Rica adventures are healthy! If you’re not sure of what kind of Costa Rica Adventure Vacation you’d like, see the resources listed at the bottom of the post.

Costa Rica – Living Pura Vida

Pura Vida is a saying Costa Rican’s use to describe a pure way of life – a focus on nature as a central thread in their lives.  Millions of global travellers know about this eco-focused vacation destination and are happy to experience Pura Vida themselves. They’re making Costa Rica (and Belize) Vacation destination priorities, yet hundreds of millions more await their turns so let’s hope Costa Ricans can protect this world heritage spot from harm. Few people know a lot about Costa Rica which is why I thought you might like this ecclectic mix of Costa Rican sites and experiences. Enjoy your Costa Rican adventure – from beaches to Volcanos and coffee farms to mountain biking and surfing.

But first, what does the geography of Costa Rica look like? You’ll want to choose the experience that’s most relevant to you. Costa Rica is a small country however, you can’t possibly see it all at one time. You may choose a hotel or condo near the beach or on the mountainside with a view of a live volcano!

Map pic courtesy of the CostaRicaTravelGuide.

As you can see, San Jose the historic capital city is located in the Central Mountains which offers its own unique nature, views, activities, and experiences.

It’s All About Fun in Costa Rica

In these first two videos you experience zip lining, a thrilling ride downhill through lush rainforest.

And yet more fun ziplining in Costa Rica adventures.

And why not a nice easy mountain bike ride? Oh yes, looks like they have the serious stuff too.

Long golden sandy beaches, soaring mountains, strange wildlife, incredible landscapes, interesting art and music, excellent restaurants with amazing food, and most of all, relaxation. Yup, it can cost a lot so you need to make decisions.

Costa Rica Wildlife

Pic courtesy of

Costa Rica is synonmous with nature and wildlife and you’ll likely enjoy the world’s largest diversity of plant and animal species. From butterflies to sloths, you might be fascinated with the beauty of nature. The slow moving Costa Rican sloth is one of those unusual animals you might see (not to mention some cool looking money. 10 Million Colones is worth about $18,000)

Why are Travellers so Crazy about Costa Rica?

Costa Rica is a small central American country, still unspoiled, relatively safe, has the charming latin American culture, interesting history, great beaches, quaint shopping, unique restaurants and cuisine, mountain to sea geography, beautiful sunsets, and lots of nature.

And with round trip airfares as low as $440, it may compete with Cuba for economy yet offer a much richer vacation experience.

The world’s been coming here for some time and Costa Rica’s tourism industry is huge. They have two international airports now to bring in eco-tourists and medical tourists.  Medical tourism is huge. You can have any type of surgical procedure done here at a fraction of the cost in a US medical facility.

There was a record 2.34 million tourist visits in 2014 and its tourism revenue surpassed what they earn on coffee, bananas and pineapples.

I just picked up a copy of Eyewitness Travel’s book titled Costa Rica travel guide. It has to be one of the best resources on everything you can do there including long zip line rides, rainforest canopy walks, siteseeing on one of the world’s most active volcanos, surfing, and fishing for Marlin. So, I’m just in the process of finding the right destination.

This is from the book. A picture of the Volcan Poas which is 8850 feet above sea level. The crater is almost 1000 feet deep. You can get excellent views from the rim of the crater after a short walk. Don’t think you can walk down into it though. You can walk down into another volcano crater in Costs Rica though. Wouldn’t that be fun!



Sounds like a fantastic adventure holiday. Now to check out some tour operators and accommodations.

I’ve been whitewater rafting only once but I have to say the Costa Rica Whitewater tours look fairly serious. Class 5 rapids are a real thrill!

There’s no audio on this trip up the Volcano, because they used a copyrighted sound track.

The Rainforest Aerial Tram looks like fun.


Costa Rica Vacation Packages

Check out Costa Rica Expeditions page to help you sort out what is you’d like to experience:

Some fun facts about Costa Rica from

Best Family friendly Ecotours in Costa Rica:

10 Interesting Vacation Packages from Travel Excellence:

Luxury Vacation Rentals in Jaco, Costa Rica:

The Museums of Costa Rica:

The Top Beaches of Costa Rica:

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5 New Health Apps You Must Use in 2017

Smartphone Health Apps that Cures What Ails You

The new smartphone you’re going to get for Xmas is going to be even more useful in 2017.  And if you’re concerned about your health and are hoping for easy ways to improve it, you’ll be delighted with these 5 very useful and ingenious apps for your iPhone, Blackberry, LG or Android smartphone.

According to a report via Harvard, there could be as many as 40,000 health related apps for your smartphone. They’re apps to help diagnose and treat conditions you may have or may encourage you to improve your mental or emotional health.

1. Aire by Food Marble Smartphone Digestive Tracker

It’s not just those with irritable bowel syndrome that find themselves in discomfort after eating. A good number of diners have “gas” after eating. The antacid and digestive enzyme industry is a billion dollar retail opportunity that tries to resolve the issue. One of the reasons may be that Gen Xer’s and Babyboomers are aging and their digestive systems are no longer able to process the strange foods and spices infused into supermarket and restaurant food. New sources of gas are entering the food chain and consumers have no idea what they are. And gas is just one ailment among many that rogue food can cause.

But what does gas mean in a health sense? It turns out gas signals that your body can’t digest certain foods.  But which foods, or more specically, which ingredients are giving you these problems? Aire can help you isolate them.

When food isn’t digested fully, hydrogen is produced in the gut. Many people cannot efficiently handle this gas, so it builds up causing bloating, pain and even diarrhea or constipation. It turns out though, you can measure how much of this gas/hydrogen is being generated. Gas that’s in the gut can seep into the bloodstream and upon reaching the lungs, it transfers to the breath.

AIRE is a breath test device. Together with its app, it functions as a personal digestive tracker, which allows you to find the foods that are most compatible with your digestive system.

And after you’ve finished your meal and the sugar buzz is wearing off, you might be feeling a little down. Now if that down feeling lasts too long, and you fell irritable, depressed, sad, or negative too long, another smartphone app might help you solve your negative disposition.

2. Moodlytics Mood Tracking Apps

If you’re miffed at why you’re not feeling happy and spirited, an app called Moodlytics might help you identify the triggers for your negative emotions and moods. Solving emotional issues and lack of happiness is no easy task even for professional psychologists. You might have better luck trying to discover the causes yourself.

Moodlytics may help you identify the triggers but not necessarily the cause. Always remember that cause and effect are two separate matters. The triggers might show up as specific thoughts, people, and places in your life.

You can download the app for Android or iPhone.

3. Accupedo Walking Tracker

We all know walking is healthy and often relaxing. What if you had an app that could count your steps and distance so you’re encouraged to walk and maintain a regular walking distance?  We all like to keep score and this app tells you how much exercise you’re getting. Make a commitment to your fitness with Accupedo.

Accupedo is an accurate pedometer app that monitors your daily walking on the home screen of your phone. Intelligent 3D motion recognition algorithms are embedded to track only walking patterns by filtering and ejecting out non walking activities.

What is so amazing about Accupedo and other apps is how it uses the devices sensors to screen out vibrations and other motion to count your steps accurately.  Even if you put in the pocket of your open jacket waving in the wind, it still records steps accurately. Check it out at

4. Strava Running Cycling and Swimming App

Strava is perhaps the favorite of top cyclists, runners, hikers and triathloners. It’s similar to fitbit but has GPS tracking the some consider more valuable.  You can track your path and distance as you go mountain biking through the forest or running around the city. Strava’s most compelling feature/benefit is how it integrates with social media for interaction with others and to see other’s mountain biking, hiking and running adventures. It can help you find the best routes and most enjoyable ones.

5. Fitbit Sleep Tracker

A persistent lack of sleep could be the number one predictor of poor health including accident proneness, depression, lack of energy, and even disease.  What if you suffer from sleep apnea and don’t even know, or you aren’t aware that you get almost no deep, alpha wave sleep every night.  A good night’s sleep if vital to the brain’s production of many necessary brain chemicals including Serotonin and Melatonin. Without these chemicals, the individual’s mood and intelligence are undermined, which impacts their financial well being and relationships. Sleep problems are a much underdiagnosed problem.

Enter the Fitbit smartphone sleep tracker app, and you have a tool to help you discover problems with your nightly sleep. Fitbit is the most popular fitness tracker and the company has its own variety of devices (Fitbit 1 and Fitbit 2) to track walking steps, cycling distance speed and paths as well as sleep assessment. The data it collects can be recorded and reported in your Android and iPhone smartphone.

You’ll need to buy a wrist strap from Fitbit which is the actual device that captures your physiological activity. What you get from the Fitbit sleep monitoring software is a printout of your sleeping patterns. It can even wake you at the best time to wake up.

I hope you enjoyed this exploration into some exciting new healthand fitness apps for your iPhone, LG, Samsung, or Android smartphone.

Find out more about saving money on your auto insurance and telematics. Ready to sell your home and retire in Costa Rica. You’ve probably entertained the thought given the rocketing price of your home.

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Nature’s Emporium – Organic Food & Supplements

I feel lucky to have Nature’s Emporium nearby in Newmarket. It’s a unique retail store that specializes in organics, supplements, gluten-free, and brands that you’d never find anywhere else. I like to peruse all the novel brands which may be the ones to hit it big soon.

naturesemporiumThe big chains all suffer from a lack of choice. They doll it up with advertising but they’re increasingly disappointing. Nature’s Emporium gets more popular every month. On Saturday’s, it is thriving.

I shop here mostly for the supplements, but their selection of fresh fruits and vegetables is amazing too.  I just bought some deathrain chips, 12 strain probiotics, and lentil chips (they’re actually ok), stuff you can’t get at the chains.

2 stores only one in Newmarket and one in Maple. They hardly advertise, so this is a good buyout opportunity for some smart investors — a fairly certain success story. Take a visit.





Check out Markcol Coffee Store and Whole Foods Markham too.

Sleep Deprivation, Health and Productivity

It’s Thanksgiving weekend and I’ve gotten a lot of sleep so far. In fact, I just woke up from a 4 hour rest this afternoon, and awoke feeling really good.  I haven’t felt this good in a long time.  It’s given me a little breather to discover what might be causing me to feel depressed and tired.

I am suffering from sleep deprivation and it’s actually become a significant problem. The physical aspect is a little scary and there’s no doubt it affects my performance and creativity at work. My craving to be more creative may actually just be a craving for more sleep. I know a couple of issues that cause the problem, but once the deprivation gets going, it creates a negative life of its own.

I’m just thinking now about the physical health implications and that I need to reorganize so I get 8 hours of sleep for sure.

How to Get Better Sleep

More Supplements!?

Of course. Look, your food doesn’t give you what you really need. And you’re getting older and your digestive system just doesn’t extract what it used to.  If you’re young and eat junk, drink too much booze, and don’t exercise vigorously, that’s not natural. By the way, there’s chemicals in your salad, milk, water, juice, bread, chicken and fish.

Anything you ingest from our food and water system is deadly.

Starting now with supplements is like opening up a savings account for your retirement.  Your number one goal should be to keep your arteries clean. Next, you want to keep your blood pressure down and add as many anti-oxidants as you can. From blueberries to grapeseed to krill, you can load your system up with supplements that will protect your tissues from free-radical damage. You can supercharge your liver with MSM and lecithin.

I’m trying out some new supplements: K-2, Probiotics, and Male Energy.

vitamink2A lot of people have trouble with calcium build-ups, whether athletes or people who consume dairy products or whose biology just doesn’t handle calcium well. Vitamin K-2 helps to control calcium issues.  Calcium is a component of heart disease so the danger shouldn’t be taken lightly. Anything that ends up in your arteries is bad news.

Brad King’s Ultimate Energy is cocktail of ingredients designed to help men.
imgresThey help to increase testosterone and retard estrogen. It has citrus-bioflavinoids, chrysine, broccoli, nettle extract, holy basil, quercetin.  Now can anything that contains “holy basil” be all that bad? Well, the only problem is the pills smell like mothballs, so you have to pick and choose the time you consume them. How about Saturday morning before breakfast:)

probioticsProbiotics are biologically active bacteria that are beneficial to our digestive system. They break down food in our digestive tract, yet many of the good bacteria are killed off for many reasons. Then the bad bacteria take over. That’s when you get bad smells coming from your breath.

It’s probably not your mouth, teeth, or nasal region, it’s your lower digestive tract.  Natural Factor’s Acidophilus & Bifidus is a potent mix that can regenerate your good bacteria count. From what I can tell so far, this does work. One problem though, it gives you the farts bad. And it’s the sulphurous kind too, that the police might use to disperse crowds. Ha, ha, good luck with this one:)


Check out some other health supplements.