Costa Rica wildlife holidays

“A two week tailor made wildlife treat in Costa Rica, exploring its flora and fauna from coast to coast, with hikes, boat rides, birding and snorkelling.”

Highlights

San Jose | Tortuguero National Park | Tortuguero village | boat excursion | Sarapiqui rainforest | chocolate tour at Tirimbina Rainforest Centre | Bajos del Toro Cloudforest | Manuel Antonio National Park | Osa Peninsula | Corcovado National Park | Cano Island | snorkelling | guided walks

Description of Costa Rica wildlife holidays

On this Costa Rica wildlife holiday, you will journey in two weeks across Costa Rica from the Caribbean to the Pacific coasts, through rainforest and cloudforest and down to the incredible Osa Peninsula and Corcovado National Park.

You’ll travel by road, by boat and on foot as you explore the flora and fauna of this amazing country. Monkeys, toucans, macaws, red-eyed frogs and dolphins are just some of the species you might spot.

Throughout the holiday you’ll be staying at comfortable lodges and hotels.
This is a truly special wildlife and nature holiday in one of the world’s most biodiverse countries.

Travel Team

If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. The Travel Team.

01273 823 700 Calling from outside the UK?

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Departure information

This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
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Responsible tourism

Costa Rica wildlife holidays

Carbon reduction

Your holiday will help support local people and conservation. We must also reduce CO2. Learn about the CO2 emissions of this holiday and how to reduce them.

At the company location in the UK there are fifteen staff members. Of these, four work from home (no commuting), one who cycles twenty miles a day to & from work, and another cycles ten miles a day (in summer). The new office that was recently built is very energy efficient. It is well-insulated, the roof is shaded by trees which helps with the building not overheating during the summer months and therefore air-conditioning is not a daily requirement, and it has lots of natural light to reduce electric light usage whenever possible.

The company is located on a former farm and the directors grow fruit and vegetables which are shared with the team (apples, pears, blackcurrants, broad beans, lettuce, mint, courgettes, squashes etc!), so we keep our own footprint low. In addition, there are other members of staff that have home grown products that are available to their team members. As a company, we look to buy energy-efficient computers, and believe in recycling, so the latest computers bought have been both energy efficient and re-conditioned.

As part of our commitment to the environment we have a programme to plant trees in Tanzania, Malawi, Peru etc. through the company’s foundation. This was set up to help alleviate poverty, conserve endangered wildlife, and protect earth’s environmental diversity for the benefit of us all. All the projects have a link with tourism in some way, and many benefit the wider world as well as local people, through conserving areas of natural beauty. We don’t just look overseas when considering the environment, even at the office the team planted tress in the fields surrounding the buildings to celebrate the company’s 21st birthday in 2019.

As a company we think about our partners overseas carefully. Whereas it is not always possible for them, due to their locations in remote areas, the company ethos is to use properties around the globe that have a similar ethical stance to ourselves. If they can use local suppliers for their provisions, be it food or furnishings then they do, and all offer a variety of menus including vegetarian and vegan/plant-based options. Our partners support the use of solar/renewable energies, and many are looking at ways of switching their current supplies to more eco-friendly options in order to be more efficient. The use of solar, water and air are options in use or being explored, as well as grey water run offs. Energy efficient appliances and practices, card operated in room lighting, low energy bulbs, and a change in laundry practices, are all in operation, and show just a few of the initiatives used. Our partners also use local staff within their properties. Many live on-site in seasonal properties for example reducing the travel emissions of the company, many come from the local villages and communities surrounding the properties. This includes everyone from house keeping to management and the guides that are from the locale.

Due to the nature of the holidays provided by the company, it is impossible to eliminate all flights but where possible we use the minimum flight hours an itinerary can operate with. The packages we have on offer include rail portions in some areas, which keep emissions low, many walking options and shared transportation.

Environment

Costa Rica is known as one of the most environmentally-friendly countries in the world. They practically invented ecotourism, and over 25% of the country is a protected reserve. During this trip you will be visiting a good selection of these important reserves.

The country runs a successful conservation initiative called the Certification for Sustainable Tourism (CST). This recognises services committed to preserving the environment and sustainability of the country. Costa Rica also has a Blue Flag programme.

Selva Verde has 5 leaf (top) certification, and Bosque de Paz has 3 leaves. Evergreen Lodge is Rainforest Alliance certified.

The gardens of Bosque de Paz at Bajos del Toro Cloudforest are a haven for wildlife and birdlife including large numbers of hummingbirds. There are 22kms of nature trails in the grounds letting you experience different aspects of the forest. There is also an orchid garden here, created in 2000 and showcasing over 200 species.

For every person that travels with the company, it plants trees through The Travel Forest initiative. Depending on where they plant and the requirement of the specific area, they plant either indigenous trees or a mix of indigenous and non-native species. Planting non-native seedlings may seem counter-intuitive but doing this can often help any remaining indigenous forest from being cut down (e.g. for fuel) as some non-native trees grow much more quickly than indigenous types. They particularly aim to save ancient or older indigenous forest, through offering an alternative option for fuel requirements of local communities. In addition to this benefit, their Travel Forest initiative helps with such things as planting for water-course retention, soil erosion, shade and even food – all depending on what is planted and where. They have planted almost 100,000 trees to date in various degraded locations including the Andean mountains in Peru, northern Tanzania and Malawi. This has always been done in conjunction with the local communities who plant and then tend the seedlings. Trees are far more important to the health of this planet (and us) than many people imagine. This global Travel Forest initiative can and does make a big difference.

Community

Local guides and drivers are used throughout this trip, and lodges which promote using local staff.

We've weaved in visits to local villages on this trip. The visit to Tortuguero village for example, gives a good insight into local life and culture, and an understanding of how the villagers back the turtles protection projects.

In San Jose and elsewhere, we always encourage and advise visitors to try local restaurants, and buy locally made products.

The company offering trip works with partners on the ground in each destination, and only uses local guides. They also primarily promote locally-owned services (hotels etc). They are very clear which accommodations have good environmental and social responsibility credentials. This information is used to ensure that any traveller wanting to ensure they are really making a difference, can choose between one property and another on eco-issues.

The also back a charity with funds and administration. This is a registered UK charity whose principle aim is to relieve the poverty of indigenous communities in areas outside of the UK which are affected by tourism. The charity backs poverty alleviation, education, cultural preservation and conservation projects within these regions. It has backed schools, clinics, micro-business projects and more. They are currently raising funds for 9 different grassroots projects in nine different counties, which travellers are encouraged to donate to if they would like to give something back.

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