Costa Rica Wildlife (trip)

Costa Rica Wildlife

  • San Jose Airport, San Jose, Costa Rica
  • Family & Friends
Costa Rica, Central America

Contact provider for price10 DaysYear-round
Boutique accommodations Exertion level: 4
Operator: Costa Rica Expeditions 8 people max
Hike in Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve and visit the Butterfly Garden. At Arenal walk on the Hanging Bridges trails then soak in a natural hot springs in the shadow of the Volcano. Head to remote Tortuguero for boat trips through rainforest creeks and a night excursion to observe sea turtles nesting (June-Oct. only). Return in light charter plane to San Jose.

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Locations visited/nearby

Costa Rica, Central America

0 testimonials about this trip.

2 testimonials about the provider, Costa Rica Expeditions:

  • Reviewer: John and Barbara Donahue located in USA
    "We were very well satisfied with Costa Rica Expeditions, from the pick-up at San Jose Airport - including welcome help in getting through customs - to the conclusion of our trip. We liked the hotels you recommended: Bougainvillea near San Jose and Villa Blanca. The drivers we had on all transfers were helpful and spoke enough English for us to communicate. We liked your country and would like to return and when we do we will use your services."
  • Reviewer: Chuck and Tia Ramsey located in NC USA
    "Back in cold western North Carolina after one of our best vacations ever, we'd like to thank you and all the Costa Rica Expeditions staff for making our Costa Rica vacation a great experiencea Each trip component, starting with our arrival at the airport and ending with a drop-off at a car rental agency, included caring CRE staff ensuring that we were in the right place at the right time.Every part of your package was wonderful - the facilities were nice, the food was great, and the staff were outstanding. We'll certainly advise friends to consider Costa Rica Expeditions in their travel plans, and hope that we, too, can again use your services some day."

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Special information

  • This is a custom departure, meaning this trip is offered on dates that you arrange privately with the provider. Additionally, you need to form your own private group for this trip. The itinerary and price here is just a sample. Contact the provider for detailed pricing, minimum group size, and scheduling information. For most providers, the larger the group you are traveling with, the lower the per-person cost will be.
  • Family oriented trip.


Day 1: Arrival San Jose, Costa Rica (No meals.)
Arrive at the Juan Santamaria International Airport. After passing through Immigration you will be met by a Costa Rica Expeditions representative who will give you a sticker to facilitate clearing customs. When you are exiting the building, look for a Costa Rica Expeditions' guide in an orange shirt holding a sign with your name on it. He or she will take you to your hotel. Overnight at the Parque del Lago Hotel.

Day 2: San Jose / Monteverde. (B,L,D)
After an early breakfast on your own meet your driver for the 4-1/2 hour drive to Monteverde (transportation may be shared with other guests). The first 2-1/2 hours are on the Pan-American Highway and the last two are on a winding gravel road. Arrive at your Monteverde hotel in time for lunch. Afternoon visit to the Ecological Farm. This small private reserve provides the chance to see flora, birds and mammals. Dinner and overnight at The Monteverde Lodge.

Day 3: Monteverde Cloud Forest (B,L,D)
After breakfast hike in the Monteverde Cloud Forest. Founded in 1972, the Reserve extends down both slopes of the Tilaran Mountains (elevation 2,300-5,600 ft.), encompassing six different ecological life zones and protecting more than 100 species of mammals, 400 species of birds and 1,500 species of plants. From January to July, depending upon your luck and patience, you may observe in its natural habitat the Resplendent Quetzal (occasionally 12 or more individuals at once). Other species include the Three-Wattled Bellbird, the Emerald Toucanet, and White-faced and Howler Monkeys. Return to your hotel for lunch. Afternoon visit to the Butterfly Garden where butterflies and other insects are raised and displayed in cloth enclosures in tropical gardens. Overnight at Monteverde Lodge.

Day 4: Monteverde / Arenal (B,L,D)
Mid-morning drive from Monteverde to your hotel in the Arenal area (4 hours). You will drive around the north end of Lake Arenal near the Volcano, which has been active since 1968. Stop for lunch on the way to Arenal. Arrive at your hotel in time for an afternoon rest. In the evening, weather permitting, view the volcanic activity, which may include explosions and lava flows. Overnight at the Arenal Manoa Hotel.

Day 5: Arenal / Hanging Bridges Trail / Hot Springs (B,L,D)
After breakfast hike the Arenal Hanging Bridges trails, set in a 250-hectare (618-acre) reserve of fully-recovered secondary rainforest. Here you will traverse 15 bridges from 5-100 meters long that cross ravines and rivers in the rainforest and follow a 3-km circuit of interpretive trails built with paving blocks to prevent slipping. The bridges are made of aluminum, galvanized steel and concrete, and ensure maximum security for visitors. Afternoon visit to the Hidalgo Family Hot Springs. Overnight at Arenal Manoa Hotel.

Day 6: Arenal / Tortuguero (B,L,D)
After an early breakfast, you will be picked up by a driver for the trip to Cano Blanco dock (5 hours). Here you will meet your boat and local guide for the 1-1/2 hour ride to Tortuguero. The last part of the drive will take you through banana plantations. Until the 19th century, Costa Rica was very poor with an economy based on subsistence agriculture. Then the introduction of coffee provided a product suitable for export. Coffee was followed by bananas, both of which continue to be two of the country's most important crops. Overnight at Tortuga Lodge & Gardens.

Day 7: Tortuguero National Park (B,L,D)
After breakfast depart with a local guide for a boat tour into Tortuguero Park. Originally intended to protect a major nesting beach of the Atlantic Green Sea Turtle, the Park now encompasses 51,870 acres, one of the last large areas of tropical rainforest in Central America. Eleven habitats are found in the park. Three species of monkeys (Spider, Howler and White-faced), Three-toed Sloths, and river otters are frequently seen along the natural inland waterways and canals. Caiman, iguanas, river turtles, Basilisk Lizards, and Poison Dart (Dendrobates) Frogs inhabit the area, along with more than 320 species of birds, including all six species of Kingfishers found in the new world, three species of toucans, 8 species of parrots, and other neotropical species such as the Slaty-tailed Trogon, White-collared Manakin, Purple-throated Fruitcrow, and White-fronted Nunbird and many more which we will have the opportunity to observe. Return to the hotel for lunch. Afternoon at leisure. Overnight at Tortuga Lodge.

Day 8: Tortuguero Village (B,L,D)
After breakfast visit Tortuguero village, Park headquarters, the general goods store and walk paths lined with colorful Afro-Caribbean homes. Also visit the Atlantic Green Sea Turtle Museum founded by the Caribbean Conservation Corporation (CCC). The late Dr. Archie Carr began to study and tag thousands of Atlantic Green Sea Turtles arriving at Tortuguero Beach every year from June through October to lay their eggs. The CCC study has continued ever since and is the longest-running, continuous study of its kind in the world. Lunch will be at "Miss Juney's," one of Tortuguero's oldest and most loved residents. Miss Juney is famous for her down-home Caribbean cooking featuring typical dishes from the Caribbean coast, such as rice and beans in coconut milk, black chicken, sweet plantains, fried bread fruit and fruit juices made with tamarindo, cas, or maracuya. Overnight at Tortuga Lodge.

Day 9: Tortuguero / San Jose (B,L,D)
Morning departure from the Lodge to meet your chartered 30-min. flight back to San Jose. Upon arrival go on the Cafe Britt Plantation tour. This tour is packed with tips and tricks that will help make your next cup of coffee your best. Learn how to properly store coffee and brew a perfect cappuccino. Observe how experts distinguish good coffees from great ones and why they ignore their mothers' warnings about slurping. After the tour, transfer to Parque del Lago Hotel.

Day 10: Depart San Jose (No meals.)
Transfer to the international airport, arriving 2-3 hours before your flight's scheduled departure time.

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