The Osa Peninsula is one of Costa Rica’s best destinations for an authentic nature & wildlife experience. What could be better than staying in a beautiful eco-lodge, surrounded by exotic animals and tropical rainforest? While this wild piece of Costa Rica is a natural playground for some, it is not for every traveler. Everyone should know these 7 things before visiting the Osa.
You Won’t Find Any Brand Name Hotel Chains.
So far, the Osa has been untouched by major corporations and hotel chains. Instead, you’ll find secluded eco-lodges nestled into the rainforest, each designed to offer an authentic nature experience. Accommodations range from rustic to luxurious, so you have quite a selection of unique bungalows and lodges to rest your head.
Protect Your Gear.
Moisture is the enemy of electronics. Even if you don’t drop your camera directly into the Pacific, it is still susceptible to damage from the rainforest’s humidity. If you plan to bring any photography equipment or other expensive items, it’s worth it to spring for a ziplock bag to store it in when not in use. Cell phones fit well in most sandwich bags.
You Will Become an Early Riser.
Love to snooze til noon? On the Osa, that means you’ve slept away half the day! Don’t worry; there are plenty of tropical birds and howler monkeys to give you a sunrise wakeup call (which is about 5:30am in this part of the world). Even if you’re not a natural when it comes to early mornings, you’ll be surprised by how quickly your body will adjust.
Leave the Flat Iron at Home.
The Osa Peninsula is the perfect place to leave vanity at the door. The tropical rainforest is the last place you’ll need to sport an up-do. Most people opt-out of packing their styling tools and other heavy-duty beauty products because there is simply no need for it. The tropical humidity lends itself to a more natural look, and the toucans don’t mind if your hair isn’t perfectly coiffed.
Watch Out for the Sun!
The Osa Peninsula is about 8 degrees north of the equator and the sun is strong. This alone means you will need to drink more water than you normally do during day around the office. Add in the rainforest hikes, kayaking, and snorkeling excursions and you can see how extra hydration is imperative. As for sunscreen: reapply, reapply, reapply.
Don’t Leave Your Food Out.
As a guest in the rainforest you will undoubtedly meet a number of its residents. Be aware that it is not uncommon to encounter bugs during your stay on the Osa. If you’re not a fan of the creepy crawlers, be sure to keep all food wrapped and stored so as not to attract an army of tiny new friends. If you’re an entomologist or general bug enthusiast, you’ll be delighted to see what happens when you leave a slice of pineapple on your nightstand.
You’ll Miss It.
The Osa’s rainforest will awaken your senses. The food is fresh and flavorful, the flowers and plants pop with color, and the sounds of crashing waves and squawking birds become commonplace after a few days. It tends to make the suburbs feel a little…muted. As with all vacations, it will take some time to readjust to the pace of normal life.
There is a lot to know before visiting Costa Rica’s Osa Peninsula. If you are still up to the challenge after reading this list, then you’ll feel right at home in the middle of the rainforest.
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