This trip is a photographer’s dream. We start in the capital city, San Jose, with a visit to InBio Parque, established to convey some sense of the enormous biodiversity of this country. It provides many opportunities to view wildlife up close, from crocodiles, jacanas, and herons, to butterflies, blue-crowned motmots, and sloths. We’ll tour an organic pineapple farm before checking in to Tirimbina Rainforest Center, where we will make our own chocolate from roasted cacao beans. A guided nocturnal prowl through the forest tops off our first full day.
Subsequent days will be equally enticing, from floating on the Sarapiqui River to spot iguanas and other wildlife (if we are lucky maybe even a pair of rare great green macaws!), climbing up a lava field onto the shoulder of Arenal Volcano for a view of Lake Arenal, tree-planting at our environmental education center Finca Steller, soaking in thermal hot springs, visiting a local elementary school, and spending some time at Finca Luna Nueva, a forest lodge with an organic farm and excellent wildlife viewing, along with a very inviting swimming pool!
The highlight of the trip will be a few precious days at the Pocosol Field Station in the Children’s Eternal Rainforest. We leave our coach behind and transfer to 4×4 pick-up trucks, in which we climb the winding mountain road and cross a suspension bridge to reach the field station. During our stay there, we will enjoy a hike up to the bubbling mud pots of the Zamia trail, take a night hike to look for frogs around the lake, mist-net bats in the evening and birds in the morning, enjoy views of a waterfall, and experience complete sensory immersion in the magic that is this unique rainforest. Our trip back to San Jose will include a shopping opportunity in the artists’ community of Sarchi. In addition to our own driver, we are accompanied by a local expert guide and naturalist, as well as a FCER group leader Maggie Eisenberger.