Here I am, waves are gently crashing right in front of me as I take in the smells of the ocean. You know that smell of the fresh ocean spray in the moist air when you arrive at the ocean?  I passed my tongue on my lips and I could taste the salt, just from sitting here the past few minutes in which I have been writing. I am laying in a nice, simple lounge chair on the yellowish sand where, when you stand up, it almost feels like your feet are sinking into soft styrofoam.  Accompanied by the crashing waves, were the birds singing, the sounds of the white faced monkeys and sloths on the trees, and a tropical forest all around.

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A hut made out of drift wood and covered with leaves from palm trees was right behind me, where I was able to buy fresh coconut. I am in awe with this view and with the surroundings here at Red Frog Beach Resort.

At this moment I am wondering, “why did I agree to go on a zip line tour and leave this beautiful beach?”  I am extremely comfortable and in true, natural luxury.  I am the adventurous one, always have been.  After all, isn’t that how I ended up moving from France to America?

But on this zip line tour, I was so excited to experience it, but I was also nervous. I had heard many stories and seen people in casts after their experience, and to be blunt, I was very afraid. I love speed and yes, I used to ride an 1100cc motorcycle and enjoyed the adrenaline rush. But for some reason, this event did not have me excited like that.  I was more nervous than anything else!

We meet at the activity center where Jesus and Rene introduced themselves as our guides.

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We signed a release paper and were guided toward the back of the activity center here at Red Frog Beach Resort, where both Rene and Jesus fitted us with our gear. This was becoming more real by the minute. The gear was put on us and panic got me when I was given my brown leather gloves. The gloves were also equipped of a straight “barre de for,“ like an iron bar of some sort.

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We were given helmets and were told to follow our two guides. I told them it was my first time and they were excited to assure me that we were embarking on a wonderful and fun experience and that I was going to love it.

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We hopped onto the back of the white truck and headed up into the jungle! After fifteen minutes up the mountain, we arrived at the end of the road.  This may have been the end of the road, but it was the beginning of a great experience.

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In order to get to our first zip line, we had to climb a very, very tall set of stairs going up into the tree. Stairs…well jungle stairs, meaning ropes as your hand rails and wood planks as your stairs.

At this point I knew I was not going to have the courage to do this. This was no small stairway!

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And at this point, encouragement came from all sides.  My companion and the two guides, were incredible. I went up one step at a time and looking up. Before I knew it, I had made it to the top.

Safety is the number one priority of this tour! At all times, no matter how much fun we were having, we were tied either to the tree, or to the zip line.

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The guides started to explain to us, very specifically, the rules and then Jesus said bye bye and off he went. I was supposed to go right after, but the idea to be off the platform was a bit too much, and I told my companion to go ahead, that I did not think I could do it. Rene did not leave a chance for that to happen and very professionally he told me what to do, what to expect and that he will not let me go until I say so. He instruct me to sit on the edge of the platform, that way I could see and feel that I was getting held by the line. And then I gave the green light and off I went.

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This was not scary at all, it was fun, and you get to see the jungle from high up in the canopy!!  For example, in the photo below, the foliage below me is not the ground…the ground is probably eighty feet below me.

May_2016_Iphone_Panama_Zipline_tour - 144One of the longest zip line was 400 meters and that was extraordinary. The one hour tour went by fast, was fun, and it was beautiful to be one on one with the guides. Before we knew it, it was over.

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Knowing the equipment was very sturdy, new and checked before each tour, made you feel like this is the place to experience a zip line, whether it is your first time or not.

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There are many zip line tours in the world but I could of not asked for a better place to zip line for the first time. I loved it!!!  It’s not just about the actual zip line, but equally about the amazing guides that accompanied us.

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Over an hour after we started,  we arrived at the end of our fabulous tour.  We were brought back to the activities center and returned our equipment.

May_2016_Iphone_Panama_Zipline_tour - 170We were thrilled by the tour.  I could not wait to get back to our gorgeous villa and private pool to edit my photos and to write about my experience !

Stay tune for my next post on the massage service I received at the Red Frog Beach Resort….not your ordinary location for a massage, you will be amazed at what I have to share!!