Acapulco, Mexico by ladyholidaymag // via Instagram http://instagr.am/p/UsNVq3EmHs/
Megan Lee and Katie Boyer are on the Go Overseas team and can’t get enough of traveling (or furry creatures!) Megan lived in Asia for 2 years before relocating to California, and Katie has volunteered in Mexico and Peru but is happy to be back in the Bay Area.
It’s always fun to take a walk on the wild side when you are traveling abroad - whether you volunteer with organizations that help plants and animals, visit sanctuaries or conservation projects, or opt to just appreciate the beauty of nature by observing, animal encounters should definitely make it on your next trip itinerary!
During my study/volunteer abroad abroad trip to Peru, we saw llamas and alpacas around every corner. Whether you were in rural villages or downtown Cusco, llamas and alpacas wandered the streets. On our way to Urubamba one day, we stopped at an alpaca/llama farm where they spin their wool into beautiful clothes and tapestries.
“Studying abroad in Africa meant many opportunities for interactions with wildlife. This particular image was captured during a safari ride at sunrise in Etosha. Being the dry season, the landscape was brown and bare, making the animals easy to spot!”
“The Batu Caves in Malaysia held the first Hindu temple I have ever visited. We’d heard rumors of monkeys running rampant, so we came prepared with some spare bananas. This little guy was aggressive (and slightly frightening), but made for great monkey business.”
“Riding in an endless sandy desert on a camel while humming tunes from Aladdin? Check.”
I chose to visit Mazunte, a small beach on the coast of Oaxaca, Mexico because it’s home of the National Turtle Center. We learned all about the variety of turtles in the local waters. We even got to see one in the wild during our boat ride!
Donkeys are also common in Peru, mostly in rural areas. They come in handy for carrying supplies on the long Incan trails. Sometimes they even stop traffic!
Check out Meg and Katie’s former experiences with animals
April 10, 1864: Maximilian I becomes Emperor of Mexico.
The short-lived Mexican Empire was the second of its kind. In the 1820s, an actual Mexican general named Augustine I had ruled Mexico for less than a year, before being exiled and eventually executed in 1824. Maximilian, as far as Mexican emperors go, was equally unfortunate. His grandfather was Franz I of Austria, the last Holy Roman Emperor. Maximilian himself was an Austrian Archduke; he was offered the crown of Mexico by Napoleon III, in the wake of the American Civil War, which rendered the Americans unable to interfere in Mexican affairs.
Maximilian was hesitant at first, but he accepted the crown in 1863, losing all of his Austrian titles in the process. Although backed by Catholics and conservatives in Mexico, his short-lived regime saw opposition from liberals (like president Benito Juarez and future president Porfirio Díaz) from the outset. Nevertheless, he and Empress Carlota selected Mexico City as the seat of their new government, which, surprisingly, undertook some liberal reforms that angered Maximilian’s wealthy supporters. Their attempts to awkwardly integrate themselves into Mexican society, while unsuccessful, were admirable. The couple even adopted the grandchildren of the other Mexican emperor, Augustine I.