Costa Rica is of course known for its birds and as the country is home to 6% of worlds bio-diversity and has more birds than the US and Canada combined it is not surprising why. Whilst any trip to this beautiful country offers birdwatching in abundance, we have put together a specialist itinerary to take you through some of the best locations and top properties to offer the best sightings. From the Central Valley, to the Turrialba Valley and onto the Osa Peninsula not only will you stay in beautiful places but you will get a rich and varied opportunity to see fantastic wildlife throughout the country!
Upon arrival into San Jose airport you will be met by a representative who will assist you to your first hotel. We have suggested Finca Rosa Blanca Coffee Plantation, set in the highlands of the Central Valley, just 20 minutes from the airport. At 4,000 feet above sea level the lodge’s property offers acres of tropical gardens and paths with thriving wildlife. Additionally, there is a 30-acre organic grown coffee plantation.
This morning a bird watching expert and naturalist guide will walk with you through the grounds and into the surrounding coffee farms of Finca Rosa Blanca, where over 130 species of birds have been seen. The forest of our Costa Rica coffee plantation is the ideal bird watching area for every bird lover from beginners to experts. You will see dozens of birds in just a few hours. After this, walk the lanes of the coffee plantation and learn about the process of coffee with an expert guide.
Today you will continue to Turrialba Valley home to Rancho Naturalista, one of the finest birdwatching lodges in Central America. Over 450 species of birds have been recorded in this private forest reserve and within the local area. In the afternoon, you will enjoy the hike in the property including to the Hummingbird Pools where hummingbirds arrive to dip in the fresh spring water of the stream each evening. Other species in the area include the Tawny-throated Leaftosser, Dull-mantled Antbird, Great Tinamou and many more. Dinner is served family style at the property tonight.
Birdingactivity starts at sunrise when the birds become active. Begin at the balcony to see what comes to the feeders before heading to the insect light to see some of the insect feeding species like the Red-throated Ant Tanager. After breakfast, head out on the trails in the private forest reserve to look for mixed species flocks. Several different species can be seen foraging together. You will probably spend all morning in the forest moving quietly along a trail watching and listening for birds. Then it is back to the lodge for a delicious lunch. Rest of the day is at leisure.
Continue to the warm and humid northern lowlands of Costa Rica to spend two nights in Selva Verde Lodge. This lodge is located amongst towering Almendro trees full of Howler Monkeys and Keel Billed Toucans. This property has long been a favourite with nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers and it is no surprise now. Used also as a research station this property is also close to protected zones such as Braulio Carillo National Park and La Selva Biological Station. Afternoon at leisure.
This morning you will go to La Tirimbina Biological Reserve where you will have the help of a naturalist guide to share their knowledge through primary and secondary forests in search of different species of birds. Some outstanding species that can be found are Sunbittern, Snowy Cotinga, White Fronted Nunbird and the Black-Crested Coquette. You will quickly understand how the Sarapiqui area represents more than 54% of all birds found in Costa Rica!
From the humid lowlands travel into the cloud forest area of Bajos del Toro, located in the slopes of the Central Volcanic Mountain Range. This is a great place for to immerse oneself in nature and is a wonderful destination for bird lovers and hikers who want to explore a secluded part of Costa Rica. Surrounding your hotel are mountains, rivers and waterfalls which exuberate biodiversity. Additionally, the owners are very active in the conservation of the country’s natural resources.
These days are at your leisure to explore the area at your own pace and improve your birdwatching skills. The benefit of coming to Costa Rica for a birdwatching trip is the great variety of species here and that the altitude ranges from sea level to 3,800 metres. At Bosque del Paz hotel they have recorded 331 species of birds since 1997 which include the Resplendent Quetzal, Emerald Toucanet, Ornate Hawk Eagle, Black-faced solitaire and Golden-browed Chiorophonia among many others.
This morning a transfer will take you to San Jose Domestic Terminal to board a local flight to Puerto Jimenez in the south pacific area, where transport will be waiting for you to take you to El Remanso. This area of the South Pacific of Costa Rica has been described by National Geographic as “the most biologically intense place on Earth”. This region is home of 350 species of birds, 150 species of mammals, over 100 species of reptiles and amphibians, about 5500 insects, and 500 species of trees.
The Osa Peninsula is well known as one of the world’s best birding destinations and El Remanso offers plenty of opportunities to spot your favourite bird. Today you will enjoy a tour in a very interesting spot where four different ecosystems meet: a beautiful river creek, pristine rainforest, pastureland and the ocean, making it an ideal place for bird watching because of the merge of different characteristics of the place. Rest of the day is at leisure.
These days are at your leisure to explore the area and its wonderful natural treasures, relax at your room listening to nature around you, take a dip in the pool, or take an optional tour (extra cost). Some activities you could enjoy in the area are waterfall rappelling, guided hikes, birdwatching, horseback riding, dolphin watching, surfing, kayaking, tree climbing and yoga classes. This is the perfect property to blend adrenaline seeking activities with complete relaxation.
Today it is your final day in Costa Rica. Have a relaxing breakfast overlooking the Pacific Ocean before transferring to Pueto Jimenez airstrip for your short flight to San Jose and your international flight home.
This itinerary costs from £2,985 per person B&B based on 2 sharing and including all private transfers but not international flights.
You can get flights from £550 per person return and do ask us for advice. We can book the flights for you, but a booking fee may apply.