This beautiful structure, located in the South side of the Buen Retiro Park in Madrid is one of my favorite sites I saw in the famed city. It is nestled…
This beautiful structure, located in the South side of the Buen Retiro Park in Madrid is one of my favorite sites I saw in the famed city. It is nestled in between massive oak tress across a green pond with a fountain and every angle you look at it from shows you something new. The glass palace is made mostly of glass with the foundation and framework from a strong iron. It is a sight to behold and one that you will have a hard to finding anywhere else in the world on this scale.
The history of this building is that it was constructed in 1887 from a design created by Ricardo Velazquez Bosco and erected to be a home for plants from the Philippines during an exhibition that was taking place in this massive park right. The palace was built so that it could be relocated but that has never happened and it still stands in the same place today.
When I was there I marveled at how well maintained and beautiful it was as well as how much work it must take to clean. There is nothing actually inside of the palace now but a blank floor and a small staircase to a bathroom. However they do have art exhibits that are shown in the palace. When I was there an art exhibit was going on that took colored circles and placed them in the palace. This neither added nor took away from the charm for me.
One thing I didn’t consider before going there was all of the birds that would be trapped inside. As you can imagine, if a bird flies in it has a really hard time getting out as everything looks like an exit to them, so I heard many birds flying around the top of the palace.
This location is free and is a must visit in Madrid, as is the entire park in which it is a part of. Please leave a comment below with your thoughts.
With the new year already begun, it seems like summer will be here before we know it. Lots of people I know are already trying to plan their trips for…
With the new year already begun, it seems like summer will be here before we know it. Lots of people I know are already trying to plan their trips for the year and a lot of them are asking me about our trip to Havasupai last year. You can see a big list of posts and links you should check out at the end and hopefully this post answers your questions on this amazing trip.
Permits & Registration
First up is the not fun stuff, permits and registration.This is always subject to change, but here is how it went when we booked the trip last year.
If you are looking to book your stay at the lodge then you will need to call at least a couple months before to get a spot. I called around the middle of February and was able to secure the weekend I wanted in the middle of June, but I would say to call as soon as you know, they don’t always take reservations that early but will tell you when to call back. The lodge is about a mile from the first waterfall so you will have to walk at least a mile each way, but you are in the small town so you can easily get food and supplies.
The same is true for the campground, if you know when you are going then just call and secure the spot. Understand that this is not a tourism board, there is the chance you will have to call multiple times before someone picks up sometimes. Be patient and be prepared to pay for at least some of the charge upfront. The campground is about a mile and a half from the town so about 9 miles from the trail head. It is between Havasu and Mooney falls in an amazing area, but the walk is a lot longer to get food at the small store so be prepared.
There is really not a lot of close options for staying near the trail head the night before your hike starts. I would recommend Peach Springs which is the closest to the trail head but is still about 65 miles away. Google Maps will tell you that it is 2-3 hours drive from here but when we went the road was a two lane highway and it was in good shape so that drive took a lot less then we had planned.
Also there is not a lot in Peach Springs so don’t assume you will be able to get coffee or gas if you leave early in the morning as a lot of places are not open.
Getting to Supai
So now you have your reservation, have a hotel for the night before, now you need to think about getting to Supai. This little town, down in the Grand Canyon is located about 7 miles from the trail head. It is not to hard on the way down as you will drop about 3,000 feet of elevation but on the way back up it can be brutal, especially during the summer if it is hot, so plan accordingly for your own personal hiking time. We ended up leaving at 4:30 from the lodge to get out before the sun and the campground is an extra mile and a half past the lodge so you may need to leave even earlier.
Mules and Helicopter
If hiking is not your thing you can still get to Supai via other means. There is a helicopter ride available and horses or mules that you can rent for yourself or for your gear. I do not have a ton of information about these as I did not use either but I know they are available as I heard the helicopter and watched it land in the city many times each day.
I would recommend that you bring a decent amount of snacks for the hiking and for your time at the falls even if you are staying at the lodge. You would not want to miss when the store is open and end up with no food. With that being said there is a small restaurant that has everything from hamburgers to burritos and is decent food. There are also two small stores that sell everything from water to snacks, so there is a lot available for you in that regard. If you are camping though the walk to the town is about a mile and a half each way so you would be better off to bring your own food. From the lodge the walk is less then 5 minutes.
When you are in the town make sure to mail yourself a postcard as this is the only remaining place in the United States that still sends mail by mule out of the canyon so it is a fun souvenir.
So now that you have made it to Supai you are ready to play in the waterfalls, which are even more amazing in person then they are in photos. It literally is one of the most amazing things I have ever seen. Here is a little info on each, in the order you will see them.
New Navajo Falls
Least busy of the falls
Two falls, upper and lower
Lots of people cliff jump off the lower but be careful as this is not recommended
As we said above this is Arizona so the summertime can be VERY hot. Of course that is great for when you are at the waterfalls but it if you are hiking in or out during the afternoon it can be pretty rough. May or June are usually good months to go as it should still be warm but not hot like July and August.
Hopefully this post sets you on the right path for your own trip down here. If you have more questions please let us know. Lastly, make sure to respect the people and the culture of Supai when you are there.