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Costa Rica Wilderness Explorer

Discover a Wilder Side of Costa Rica on a Guided Adventure into Remote Natural Realms
Day 1: San José, Costa Rica
Arrive in San José, Costa Rica’s capital, where our ecotour begins with a welcome dinner.

Days 2 & 3: Tiskita Jungle Lodge
This morning, fly to Tiskita Jungle Lodge, set within a remote 300-acre private rainforest reserve on Costa Rica’s remote south Pacific coast. Squirrel monkeys, howler monkeys, whitefaced capuchins and sloths swing through the trees, and some 270 bird species thrive in the lush habitat. Tiskita’s hand-built cabins, crafted from fallen hardwood trees, survey the sea from a high ridge. Meals are prepared with fresh local fare, including more than 125 types of organic tropical fruit grown on the estate. On a hike through the grounds we’ll examine the amazing array of exotic fruit trees and taste many unfamiliar varieties. We’ll also take an in-depth rainforest hike and walk to the beach village of Punta Banco.

Day 4: Sierpe River / Costa Ballena
Driving up the coast, we stop at the Sierpe River to explore this vast mangrove ecosystem aboard our private boat. Floating down the river, we may see American crocodiles, rainbow boas, green iguanas, white-face capuchin monkeys, long-nosed bats, roseate spoonbills, ospreys, kingfishers, frigate birds and a variety of egrets and herons. En route to Dominical this afternoon, we stop at Palmar Sur to see the mysterious pre-Columbian stone spheres, perfectly carved orbs that range in size from a bowling ball to massive spheres weighing 16 tons. By late afternoon we reach our hotel adjacent to Ballena Marine National Park, a system of coral reefs and islands that's home to some of the richest undersea life in Costa Rica. 

Day 5: Ballena Marine National Park / Manuel Antonio National Park
Embark on a boat cruise in Ballena Marine National Park this morning, keeping a keen eye out for marine life. Our private small boat leaves from Uvita Beach to round Punta Uva, also known as the whale’s tail, passing one of the famous ‘window caves’ along the way. Then, we explore nearby Manuel Antonio National Park, with spectacular expanses of white-sand beach fringed by one of the most verdant rain forests on the planet. The small park is part of Costa Rica's Central Pacific Conservation Area and is renowned for its natural beauty. Amid its stunning biodiversity we find monkeys, iguanas and agoutis inhabiting the forest, while colorful crabs dot the rocks that guard turquoise lagoons. Despite the park's small size, it is home to more than 100 different species of mammals, including two types of sloth and three of Costa Rica's four monkey species, as well as nearly 200 different bird species.
Day 6:  Cerro de la Muerte 
This morning after breakfast, we drive into the Talamanca Mountains, crossing the Cerro de la Muerte, the highest point along the Pan-American Highway. On hikes through the cloud forest we’ll pass colorful bromeliads and orchids as we scout for wildlife. This region is home to Baird’s tapirs, wild boar, monkeys and coatis. The rich habitat is also the territory of six species of neotropical cats including jaguar, puma, ocelot, margay, oncilla and jaguarundi, though we are not likely to see them as they are extremely elusive. Ferns and mosses and orchids flourish in the constant drip of the mists, while birds add dashes of color to the canopy. We’ll hope to spot the famously elusive quetzal, highlights among the 600 different bird species found here. Overnight at Savegre Mountain Hotel at 7,200 feet, within a private biological reserve replete with tropical birds.

Day 7: Los Quetzales National Park
This high-altitude habitat will thrill bird lovers, as it is home to a multitude of vibrant species including many endemics. A morning nature walk reveals a wide array of birds, and we may see the emerald toucanet, golden-browed chlorophonia and spangle-cheeked tanager. This habitat is ideal for the resplendent quetzal, a revered and endangered bird of striking beauty. Listen for their deep, melodious calls as we quietly track these elusive birds. An afternoon walk along a flowing stream reveals a cascading waterfall fed by the Savegre River. This evening we bring our adventures to a close over a farewell dinner
Day 8: San José / Home
After breakfast, transfer to San José for flights home. Those who have added the Arenal Volcano extension will continue to Arenal today.

Physical Rating: Moderate / Flexible

+ Interested in adding a few days to your trip? Click here to view our Extension Options.

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