CLASSIC HOTSPOTS BIRDING TOUR
|Duration:||9 days, 8 nights|
|* This tour is available for any dates of your choosing provided guide services and accommodations are available.|
Our Costa Rica Hotspots Tour features three of the best birding locales in Costa Rica, Carara National Park in the Pacific lowlands, the middle elevation Caribbean slope, and the central highlands of the Talamanca Cordillera. The tour has the potential of recording over 300 species in a week. The best time to take this tour is during dry season from December-April or during the mini-dry season of July. Spring is when most birds are in full breeding plumage and summer is an interesting time when non-breeding dispersal occurs and rarities show up at places like La Selva. Accommodations are excellent throughout the tour.
The tour begins with a transfer from Alajuela near the international airport to the Pacific lowlands. A first stop near Orotina features stakeouts of Lesser Ground-Cuckoo and several owls with a local guide. The afternoon will feature a boat trip on the Tarcoles River and viewing of Scarlet Macaws and other birds around the lodge. The next day will be devoted to birding Carara National Park. The park features transitional forest where the ranges of many northern and southern specialties overlap. For this reason, Carara offers some of the best birding in Costa Rica. A transfer to the Talamanca highlands follows, with a stop for several high elevation species at Cerro de la Muerte en route. A full day will be spent birding the valley of San Gerardo de Dota, where Resplendent Quetzals are to be found along with many other highland specialties. While quetzals can sometimes be seen, often from a distance, near the lodge, they are best seen much closer on nearby fincas in the highlands. On the last morning in the highlands we'll visit one of those fincas to get excellent views of this fantastic species. The tour then continues to the Caribbean side for two nights stay near famed La Selva Biological Station. Much of one day will be spent birding within La Selva as well as nearby areas around Puerto Viejo. The last morning will be spent visiting a local guide who has conditioned Thicket Antpitta to appear at a feeding site on a private farm. That will be followed by birding some trails with Braulio Carrillo before returning to the lodge for lunch. That afternoon will be spent transferring back to Alajuela with a stop at La Paz Waterfall Gardens en route.