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BIRDWATCHING COSTA RICA

Description

Hugged by two bodies of water, Costa Rica’s topography offers the perfect combination of ecosystems to host hundreds of bird species. Climate and geographical position are more than mere facts: they define this tiny country. High elevations, valleys, and primary and secondary forests make out of this place the perfect scenario for bird watching. This ecological paradise protects its natural treasures in thousands acres of preserved land.

Contact us today to plan your birdwatching expedition!

PRICE: STARTING AT

$2,161.00

 

Itinerary

Day 1 – Arrive to San Jose, Costa Rica

The group will be received at the international airport by the Natural Expeditions Tour Guide, who will be with the group at all times. You will go from the airport to the hotel to get accommodated in the rooms and meet for a general briefing about the upcoming tour activities.

Meals are not included today.

Day 2 – San Jose to Tortuguero

Upon leaving San Jose, the landscape will become a combination of active volcanoes and large areas of coffee plantations. Suddenly, the scenario will transform into the most beautiful and unsuspected proportion of pristine forest, the Braulio Carrillo National Park. This is a tropical forest in the back yard of San Jose and will be the first visual contact with the rain forest.  While driving through the forest, your guide will provide an explanation of how the geological formation of the country took place. There will be a special stop along the way, as the border between the park and privately owned land will be your only chance to look for the snow cap hummer. As the journey continues, the scenery will include farm land where banana, pineapple, and ornamental plantations will show part of the everyday activity of the Costa Rican economy.

The ground transportation will be exchanged for water transportation as you prepare to enter Tortuguero National Park. As you cruise the Tortuguero canals, get your binoculars ready for a variety of herons and egrets while you travel towards the Tortuguero Lodge, the place where you will stay for two nights.

Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are included.

Day 3 – Tortuguero National Park

Rain forest and wet land species dominate Tortuguero’s ecosystem. Explore the National Park in a morning tour, where the amazing landscape along the canals of this protected area gives you the chance to find rare species such as the Sungreeb and Green Ibis.

You will also explore the rain-forest floor in a guided walk. Toucans of three species can hop from branch to branch as your guide describes the interaction between local flora and fauna.

During the afternoon, explore the gardens of your lodge looking for flycatchers, hummingbirds, and trogons. Some oropendulas may join the mixed flock of birds to complete the day. There will also be a chance to visit a butterfly garden and the frog pond located in the area of your lodge.

Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are included.

Day 4 – Tortuguero to Sarapiqui

Catch the boat again and travel back to the ground transportation to begin your visit to Sarapiqui, one of the most popular regions for birdwatchers. Enjoy the beautiful location of this area of the rainforest, where Grey-necked Wood Rails, Sun Bitterns, and Great Green Macaws are just the beginning of a long list of birds that can be seen in this region.

Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are included.

Day 5 – Sarapiqui to Arenal Volcano

After lunch at your lodge, get ready to head towards one of the most prosperous regions of the country, where the locals have seen the positive side of living by an active Arenal Volcano. You will pass by many small villages along the way, which will demonstrate the constant movement of an active society and a wide variety of cultural groups. This centralized region of Costa Rica is characterized by its fantastic habitat for many colorful birds, such as Euphonias and Tanagers, which populate and make the country a unique spot for bird watching.

Breakfast and dinner are included.

Day 6 – Reforestation Project

Start your day by visiting a private ecological reserve where programs for conservation, training, environmental education, and sustainable production is developed. As your guide takes you through the trails, you can observe a wide variety of plants and wildlife.  There is also a natural water spring for the nesting and observation of aquatic birds. Small birds such euphoniaus, honey-creepers and tanagers can be seen in this visit.

Breakfast and dinner are included.

Day 7 – Hanging Bridges, Transfer to Monteverde

Before heading to Monteverde, enjoy the forest from a different angle by walking on a series of hanging bridges up in the canopy of the rainforest. Enjoy views of the Arenal Volcano while looking for colorful birds in the treetops. After this activity, prepare yourself for a change of scenery as you enter into the tropical cloud forests of Monteverde.

Breakfast and dinner are included.

Day 8 – Monteverde Cloud Forest and Hummingbird Gallery

On the summit of the Central Mountain Range, you will find the Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve, a beautiful piece of protected forest. This place is a hidden gem among birdwatchers for its unique ecosystem in which resides the beautiful resplendent quetzal. Take one of the trails and enjoy the complexity of this unique tropical forest where orchids, bromeliads, and lichens will transport you into the pure and simplistic beauty of our planet. As you finish walking through the Reserve, have your cameras ready as you enjoy the different species of hummingbirds from the Costa Rican highlands in the Hummingbird Gallery. In the afternoon, visit CASEM (Artisans Cooperative Santa Elena and Monteverde) where you will find a lot of the local crafts and souvenirs made by the members of this cooperative. After the market, your guide will take you to downtown Santa Elena where you can interact with the locals and get a taste of the Costa Rican mountain culture.

Breakfast and dinner are included.

Day 9 – Shore Birds, Mangrove Swamp, Crocodile River, Return to San Jose

Drive out of the Monteverde mountain area toward the Pacific Ocean. Cruise throughout the Tarcoles River, which is one of the most important habitats for the American Crocodile. Keep a watchful eye as you spot various species of shore and mangrove swamp birds. Stay alert as large reptiles both in and out of the water may show. After the adventure, begin the journey back to San Jose.

Breakfast is included.

Day 10 – Depart from San Jose, Costa Rica

It’s time to say goodbye to beautiful Costa Rica!  Your guide and driver will transport your group to the airport where you will await your flight back home.

Breakfast is included (after 7:00am)

Includes

Activities:

  • Braulio Carrillo National Park
  • Banana Plantation Visit
  • Boat cruise through Tortuguero National Park
  • Hike at Tortuguero National Park
  • Frog pond visit
  • Butterfly garden visit
  • Morning Bird Walk in Sarapiqui
  • Reforestation Project
  • Hanging Bridges
  • Cloud Forest Reserve
  • Hummingbird Gallery
  • CASEM Artisans Market
  • Tarcoles River Cruise

Meals:

  • 9 Breakfasts
  • 3 Lunches
  • 7 Dinners

Transportation:

  • Shuttle from airport to hotel
  • Air-conditioned ground transportation throughout the country
  • Boat transportation in the area of Tortuguero
  • Shuttle from hotel to airport

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