JANUARY - Waterfall hiking, Smurf searching, Frog finding.
2020 was off to a hot start - we were full with guests, off on great daily jungle adventures, feasting on locally grown fresh foods and dutifully enjoying Ryan's microbrew beers. After celebrating our first year in business, the future was bright for our little Eco Resort. We were making friends with our fascinating, adventurous guests and everyone was having an incredible time together.
February - Aerial View of Morrillo Beach Eco Resort
We had been waiting for this day for a couple of years. Sunny, clear water, the massive Guayacan tree over the hotel turning golden, and everything in line at noon for the best lighting.
March - Cerro Hoyas National Park Hike
Undeterred by fears of the Coronavirus and driven by the desire for a warm weather reprieve from winter in the North, many of our guests pulled off their magical journeys just in time for the world to shut down. And then boy howdy....
April - A gorgeous huge green iguana. Many animals thrived around the world, many did not.
April brought downtime to get caught up on the to-do lists but also, the quiet time opened us up to learning more about the nature that surrounds us.
May - Exploration with our team. We took Carlos - our director of Guest Experience, out to explore the world around us, learn how to guide our adventures, learn to fish, and find new places to take our guests whom have all enjoyed him so much.
June - Exploring the Cerro Hoyas National Park
In search of more trail options and overnight camping places for our adventure seeking guests in the future. Who's ready to spend the night in the jungle?
June - Exploring the Jungles of Cerro Hoyas National Park
July - An Azuero Mantle Backed Howler Monkey
Sometimes nature needs an assist. While we await the canopy to fill, Ryan installed ropes to assist them in their travels. The troop is growing - they recently had 2 more babies. Against all odds, they are trying to tell extinction to SUCK IT!!
August - Good vibes here
Quarantine did have some silver linings. We found more time to get out tosurf. We all improved, cheered each other on and enjoyed time in the water together. We are thankful for the friendly vibe here in Morrillo. We even had a day when there were more than twice as many women as there were guys. Sadly, no cameras on hand that day to prove it.
September - Returning of our guests, especially kiddos.
So many families stuck inside for so long, it was a tremendous relief for our guests to have a chance to finally get out and travel again but more importantly, be OUTSIDE again.
October - Ngäbe Bugle Family on their way to town for the day the doctor is there.
Being so remote, access to healthcare is a serious challenge. Some towns just have a day per month when they can meet with a visiting doctor.
In October, International borders finally opened and tourism began to show her face again giving businesses like ours hope for the future again.
November - Releasing baby turtles into the Sea with our guests.
Liberation in so many ways. November is a month of celebrations in Panama. 5 holidays to be exact. Essentially the whole month is time for domestic travel in Panama. We had several guests through the month, we were full on many weekends with reservations on the horizon.
December - Snorkeling Tour to Secluded Beach
Rains were dissipating and guests returning. We were busy ramping up for the holidays when the axe came down again; the government shut down travel through mid January and almost everyone cancelled.
For the guests that were able to navigate all the red tape and get here, they had paradise all to themselves, and the fish were biting.
"From Crisis Comes Opportunity" and there was a lot of both last year. We are thankful to be in this magical place and continue to share it with you all through our Sunday emails and one day again in person.
Thank you to all of you for responding on occasion to my Sunday emails. We love hearing from you. We loved hearing what life was like for you in your corner of this beautiful planet and we hang on every word, and every picture.
We know life was challenging last year and continues to throw shade but, it's Summer in Panama now, it's a New Year and the Sun is shining. Ironically, we need shade to protect us from the Sun so you see? There's always a silver lining. Sometimes you just gotta fight really hard to see it.
We hope you are all happy, healthy, and finding your strength on those harder days. We would love to hear from you and how you are doing.
Sending you so much love from Panama,
Your Friends in Morrillo,
Cari and Ryan Mackey
Owners and Hosts