4 Awe-inspiring Wildlife Trips You Can't Miss While in Costa Rica
The rich, unparalleled biodiversity and strong presence of wildlife in Costa Rica make for some of the most memorable vacation experiences. Although tiny, this Latin American country has over 800 bird species — more than the United States and Canada combined. Since the natural habitats for these animals include tropical rainforests, misty mountain ranges, golden coastal beaches, and dense swamplands, the opportunity to come across exotic animals on your expertly-planned trip is more likely than you’d think!
Hiking in Osa Peninsula Rainforests
If you want to go where the wild things roam, the Osa Peninsula is the place. Jurassic rainforests consume the landscape with an entourage of roaring howler monkeys, chatty scarlet macaws, and elusive jaguars. Hike to Corcovado National Park for ultimate wildlife viewing where nearly one-tenth of mammal species in the Americas can be found.
Birding in the Monteverde Cloud Forest
The cool, misty cloud forest of Monteverde is home to over 400 bird species, including 30 species of hummingbirds, many of which can only be found in this unique ecosystem. The exotic Resplendant Quetzal bird is the star of the show for many birding enthusiasts, but can be difficult to spot. Book an early morning tour with a professional naturalist guide to increase your odds.
Whale Watching from the Whale’s Tail Sand Bar
A bizarre phenomenon and well worth a visit, the whale’s tail sand bar off the southern pacific coast of Costa Rica is a hot spot for humpback whales. About 9 months of the year whales migrate to the sand bar within Ballena Marine National Park to breed and raise their young
Sea Turtle Nesting at Tortuguero National Park, Playa Ostional, or Playa Grande
The leatherback sea turtle and hawksbill sea turtle can be found on both the Caribbean and the Pacific Coast. An added benefit of taking a tropical Costa Rican vacation is that Playa Ostional, Tortuguero, and Playa Grande — well-known beaches for turtle nesting — offer a wonderful experience if you happen to catch this precious moment at the right time.
Costa Rica Nature Tours
Nearly every tour on our Costa Rica nature vacations could be called an eco-tour, and for good reason! While the country only has about .1% of the world’s entire landmass, it accounts for over 5% of different species of flora and fauna in the world. The tropical weather can range from dry to humid, from hot to rainy with sunshine to light tropical breezes and rainbows with temperatures in the low-50sºF to the high-80sºF. Costa Rica’s unique location that straddles both North and South America and two majestic oceans, along with some of the world’s last cloud forests, makes the region the perfect destination for a relaxing yet exciting tropical getaway.
Thanks to the tropical climate, Costa Rica has some of the most beautiful flora and plant life in the world. The lush green vegetation is punctuated with vibrantly-colored flowers that range from the miniature to the gigantic. Over 800 varieties of ferns adorn the country and make for a gorgeous backdrop for your exotic vacation getaway. The complex ecosystems of the country mean a wide variety of plants can thrive — it’s impossible to leave the country without at least one stunning nature photo. With so much to do and see, it’s no surprise that our Costa Rica nature and wildlife vacations are a nature-lover’s dream come true.
Ecotourism in Costa Rica
Costa Rica became the poster child of ecotourism in the 1990’s and its reign as a top-rated destination for wildlife enthusiasts has steadily continued over the years. The extensive National Parks
and protected areas, the environmental programs that include not only a dedication to green energy but also to local education, and the simply amazing Blue Flag Program, which certifies beaches for everything from cleanliness to security, have all combined to help Costa Rica become a leader and innovator. Many of the hotels and resorts we work with at Costa Rica Experts have received rewards and accolades for their dedication to community-centered environmental protections. Meant to both entertain and educate, eco-tourist activities are an amazing way to experience your tropical get away while giving back or learning more!
With over 25% of the land protected in reserves or national parks and a pledge to become carbon-neutral, Costa Rica has taken great steps towards environmentalism that many countries haven’t yet considered. However, just because the country is geared towards sustainable conservation efforts doesn’t mean that your vacation stay won’t be luxurious and full of opportunities to get acquainted with the scenery. Costa Rica’s urban development has continued apace with the rest of the world, but with a focus on environmentally friendly procedures and business practices. Even some of the most deluxe or exclusive accommodations are dedicated to being carbon-neutral and value the comfort of the surrounding rainforests
and ocean-life just as much as the travelers.
Related: 6 Best Eco-Lodges in Costa Rica
Related: A Costa Rica Blue Zone Retreat