Lou Van Zwanenberg
Tour leading is a lifestyle choice for me. I have always had a keen interest in wildlife especially birds, and my work has enabled me to develop my passion further and also to share my enthusiasm for the natural world and the latino culture with customers and locals alike.
What is the view from your office?
Sometimes active volcanoes, sometimes pacific beaches sometimes toucans, orioles and motmots and always happy central american people.
What in your opinion is the best thing about the job?
getting to know the countries and the people really well: the contacts and friends you make.....and the bird watching opportunities!
Describe the funniest event you ever witnessed with a group?
A shaman performing a ceremony involving fire, turkey blood and a bus load of people in guatemala , answering his mobile phone and telling his mother that he was in the middle of a ritual and would not be home for lunch.
What is the best place to visit in your country and why?
Leon in Nicaragua has everything, active volcano to walk on, pacific beach for swimming and surfing, mangrove swamp for bird watching, colonial history, revolutionary modern history, great coffee shops and hot climate.
Describe one of the local customs in your country.
In Nicaragua they say "adios" when they meet you in the street when most people would be saying hello!
What do your customers often forget to pack and what other recommendations would you have?
Adaptors for plugs is the item most forgotten. I recommend they bring as little as possible, you can always get some washing done cheaply, there is usually cheap access to the internet, you can buy water snacks sun cream, insect repellent etc cheaply and all this helps the local economy.