Wilderness Travel - vacations and travel

Costa Rica Wildlife

Costa Rica, Central America

from $3,495* per person 9 Days December-March
Comfort accommodations Exertion level: 4
Operator: Wilderness Travel 15 people max
  • San jose, costa rica
  • Active & Adventure trips
Nature is at its most bountiful in the tropics, and in Costa Rica, huge swaths of the ecosystem have been protected as nature reserves. With our expert naturalist guide, we explore on walks in Monteverde Cloud Forest, with its distinct ecological communities, and at Arenal, a towering volcano with glowing red lava flows and inviting thermal springs. At Tortuguero National Park, we travel by boat in a vivid green mosaic of Caribbean waterways with a fantastic array of wildlife. Our post-trip extensions include thrilling whitewater rafting and the magnificent rainforests of Corcovado National Park on the Pacific Coast. Delightful nature lodges keep us comfortable as we appreciate the biological wonderland of the tropics.

Locations visited/nearby

Costa Rica, Central America

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Special information

  • May accommodate certain types of disabilities. Contact the operator for more information.

Itinerary

Days 1-3
Monteverde Cloud Forest

One of the most outstanding wildlife sanctuaries in the New World tropics, Monteverde is home to more than 400 species of birds and over 1,500 plant species. In this magical cloud forest, the ground is carpeted in fern, mosses, and shade-loving plants, while high above, the dense green canopy of tall trees shelters countless bird species. The most famous avian resident of Monteverde is the resplendent quetzal (Pharomachrus mocinno), sacred bird of the Mayas and Aztecs, with its long, trailing plumes of iridescent green. From our lodge at 4,600 feet, we enjoy nature walks on mystical forest paths draped in orchids and bromeliads. We also visit the Jardin de las Mariposas, with its netted flyway and hundreds of species of stunning butterflies, including shimmering blue morphos.

Day 4-5
Arenal Volcano

A perfect cone towering above lush green hills, Arenal first became active in 1968 with a spectacular eruption of fiery lava. In the rainforest environment of Arenal Volcano National Park, we walk a series of hanging bridges suspended high up in the forest and enjoy stunning views of Arenal. We also enjoy an optional soak in natural hot springs in a beautiful setting with thermal pools and a waterfall. Our lodge, nestled among 100 acres of rainforest, has views of the volcano and the Arenal River Gorge.

Days 6-7
Tortuguero National Park

A wonderland of coastal forest and inland waterways, Tortuguero is accessible only by water or by air. We explore by boat on natural canals, a fantastic way to view wildlife including caimans and brilliantly colored toucans. Thirteen of Costa Rica’s 16 endangered mammal species make their home in the Caribbean deltas of Tortuguero, and green, leatherback, hawksbill, and loggerhead turtles nest here (we visit the turtle research station). Three species of monkey (spider, howler, and white-faced), three-toed sloths, and river otters are often seen along the winding canals. Our base is lovely Tortuga Lodge, with its lush gardens and riverside pool.

Days 8-9
San Jose

Return to San Jose and depart on Day 9, or join our optional extensions.

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