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BEGINS IN: SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO

Puerto Rico’s Tropical Island Birding: From Cloud Forest to Rain Forest

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Road Scholar
Program #19734RJ
8 Days | 7 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Active
Love to learn in a small-group setting? This collection of programs has at most 10-24 participants.
See our Small Group programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.
Elevation Note
On field trip to El Yunque Rain Forest up to 4,000 feet.

Equipment Requirements
Lightweight rain jacket, sunscreen SPF 35 or higher, binoculars (optional spotting scope)

Itinerary for Mar 15 — Mar 22, 2015

Expand all
Type: Inn

Description: At the Hampton Inn & Suites® hotel in San Juan, they want to make your stay perfect. So if you want to surf the web on your laptop, do so with our free high speed internet access. Run a few miles in our exercise room, or swim some laps in the pool. You'll even find a convenience store at our hotel in San Juan. If you're looking for recommendations on what to do and where to eat in San Juan, just ask the staff at our San Juan hotel and they'll be happy to help!

Contact info:
6530 Isla Verde Avenue
San Juan, PR 00979 Puerto Rico
phone: +7877918777
web: hamptoninn.hilton.com/en/hp/hotels/index.jhtml?ctyhocn=SJUHHHX

Room amenities: Coffee Maker Complimentary Hot Breakfast High Speed Internet-No Charge Iron Iron/Ironing Board Lap Desk Curved Shower Rod Easy to Set Alarm Clock Radio LCD Flat Panel TV Waterpik(R) Showerhead

Facility amenities: Baggage Storage Coin Laundry Elevators Laundry/Valet Service Lounge Luggage Hold Multi-Lingual Staff On-Site Convenience Store Room Service Safety Deposit Box

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call the hotel for price
Please call the hotel in San Juan directly. It is very important to mention that you are from World Events/Road Scholar group. The telephone in San Juan is 1-787-791-8777.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day One: Sunday, March 15 - Independent arrivals/Orientation
Arrive To: Luis Munoz Marin International Airport. You are responsible for taking a Taxi from the airport to the Hampton Inn Isla Verde. After picking up your baggage follow the ground transportation sign to the taxi kiosk outside the terminal building, get a slip and wait in line. The cost is around $15 to $20 dependending on gas prices. Taxis are regulated by the Port Authorities.

Afternoon: INDEPENDENT ARRIVALS.

HOTEL CHECK-IN: Hotel check-in will be available beginning at 3:00 PM.

PROGRAM REGISTRATION & ORIENTATION: We will gather at 5:00 PM in our reserved room at the hotel (please ask the front desk for the location) for introductions and an orientation to the program. We will provide an informative overview of the program including a review of the updated daily schedule, responsibilities, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer any questions you may have.

Please be aware that program activities and scheduled times could change due to weather and other local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible.

Dinner: Dinner at local restaurant within walking distance of the hotel.

Lodging: Hampton Inn by Hilton

Meals Included: Dinner

Type: Hotel

Description: Secluded waterfront location with landscaped gardens.

Contact info:
Carr 304, Km 3.3
La Parguera, Lajas, PR 00667 Puerto Rico
phone: +7878997777
web: www.villaparguera.net

Room amenities: Air conditioned plus ceiling fans, satelitte TV, telephone. No internet access.

Facility amenities: Pool and sundeck, restaurant in hotel, 24 hr front desk, easy walking access to village center and marina area.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Two: Monday, March 16 - Pinones Forest /Travel to La Parguera/Dinner
Note: Very long day and 2.5 hrs travel time from Pinones to La Parguera

Breakfast: Continental Breakfast at the hotel including options such as eggs, sliced bacon or sausages, sliced bread or toast with jam/jelly/butter, pancakes or waffles with syrup, cornflakes or other cereal, coffee/tea, orange/grapefruit juice

Morning: FIELD TRIP: Walk with your Group Leader a two mile stretch in Pinones through a mixed subtropical forest and Puerto Rico's largest mangrove system, ending up at a saltwater lagoon. The area is home to about 50 species of birds, including the Puerto Rican Woodpecker, Stripe-Headed Tanager, Puerto Rican Flycatcher and other native and snowbird visitors. We will be looking for mango and emerald hummingbirds outside the visitor center and walk along the lagoon checking for whistling ducks, white-cheeked pintails and wading birds.

Lunch: Lunch at Local Restaurant

Afternoon: We'll Transit via the Luis A. Ferre Highway over La Cordillera Central (the island's main mountain range) into the southwestern part of Puerto Rico. Relaxed Birding at the beautiful hotel grounds. The grounds of the hotel Parador Villa Parguera often host the endangered Yellow-shouldered Blackbird which feeds on table scraps there, and can be seen at dawn and dusk in the non-breeding season flying to and from roosts on mangrove islands.

Dinner: Buffet-style dinner at La Villa Parguera hotel.

Lodging: Parador Villa Parguera

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Secluded waterfront location with landscaped gardens.

Contact info:
Carr 304, Km 3.3
La Parguera, Lajas, PR 00667 Puerto Rico
phone: +7878997777
web: www.villaparguera.net

Room amenities: Air conditioned plus ceiling fans, satelitte TV, telephone. No internet access.

Facility amenities: Pool and sundeck, restaurant in hotel, 24 hr front desk, easy walking access to village center and marina area.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Three: Tuesday, March 17 - Cabo Rojo National Wildlife Refuge (NWR)/Boqueron...
Cabo Rojo National Wildlife Refuge (NWR)/Boqueron Refuge/Dinner/Bird List Review

Note: Travel to Cabo Rojo and Boqueron; both located on the west side of Puerto Rico. Opportunities to see some of the birds that visit the west coast like Brown Booby, Brown Pelican, Magnificent Frigate Bird, gulls, egrets, and many others.

Breakfast: Continental Breakfast at the hotel including options such as eggs, sliced bacon or sausages, sliced bread or toast with jam/jelly/butter, pancakes or waffles with syrup, cornflakes or other cereal, coffee/tea, orange/grapefruit juice.

Morning: FIELD TRIP: Birding at the Cabo Rojo Salt Flats. Local guide led walk of the salt flats, which recently received the first designation for shorebirds in the Caribbean as an Important Birding Area (IBA). Twenty-eight species are known to rely on the area, including Spotted, White-Rumped and Stilt Sandpipers, Snowy and Wilson’s Plovers. Merlins patrol the area looking for easy prey.

FIELD TRIP: Continuing on with our guide into the subtropical dry forest of Cabo Rojo National Wildlife Refuge, home to natives such as Puerto-Rican Flycatchers, Adelaide’s Warblers and Warbling Silverbills. Many northern migrants winter-over in the area.

Lunch: Lunch at Local Restaurant

Afternoon: FIELD TRIP: Drive to Boqueron Wildlife Refuge . Walk with your Group Leader and a local expert around the Refuge looking for Puerto Rican Pewee, water-thrushes, yellow-faced grass quits and wading bird.

Dinner: Buffet-style dinner at La Villa Parguera hotel.

Evening: Review Bird List

Lodging: Parador Villa Parguera

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Type: Hotel

Description: Secluded waterfront location with landscaped gardens.

Contact info:
Carr 304, Km 3.3
La Parguera, Lajas, PR 00667 Puerto Rico
phone: +7878997777
web: www.villaparguera.net

Room amenities: Air conditioned plus ceiling fans, satelitte TV, telephone. No internet access.

Facility amenities: Pool and sundeck, restaurant in hotel, 24 hr front desk, easy walking access to village center and marina area.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Four: Wednesday, March 18 - Maricao Cloud Forest/Dinner and Birding review
Note: The trail gets rough and steep in sections, hiking boots highly recommended.

Breakfast: Continental Breakfast at the hotel including options such as eggs, sliced bacon or sausages, sliced bread or toast with jam/jelly/butter, pancakes or waffles with syrup, cornflakes or other cereal, coffee/tea, orange/grapefruit juice

Morning: FIELD TRIP: Journey into the mountains via Sabana Grande to Maricao Cloud Forest. The small town of Maricao is known as one of the best habitats for Puerto Rico endemic birds. Meet our local birding guide for introduction to the forest’s habitats and what birds to look for. Walk a hilly trail through the sub-tropical mountain forest, looking for Puerto Rican endemics such as the Elfin Woods Warbler, Puerto Rican Tanager, Puerto Rican Vireo, various hummingbirds and Ruggy Quail Doves. NOTE The mountain roads taken on this trip, while safe, are very winding and people prone to motion sickness may wish to take medication as a preventative measure. NOTE: The trail gets rough and steep in sections, hiking boots are highly recommended.

Lunch: We'll enjoy a delicious and healthy picnic lunch including fresh salad and/or sandwiches at the forest.

Afternoon: FIELD TRIP: On our way to the hotel, stop at La Torre de Piedra (the Stone Tower) for view over Puerto Rico's central cordillera. On a clear day it is possible to see both the Atlantic to the north and the Caribbean to the south. Because we are at the top of a mountain peak, we have an unobstructed vantage point above birds flying between tree-tops.

Dinner: Dinner at local restaurant.

Lodging: Parador Villa Parguera

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Secluded waterfront location with landscaped gardens.

Contact info:
Carr 304, Km 3.3
La Parguera, Lajas, PR 00667 Puerto Rico
phone: +7878997777
web: www.villaparguera.net

Room amenities: Air conditioned plus ceiling fans, satelitte TV, telephone. No internet access.

Facility amenities: Pool and sundeck, restaurant in hotel, 24 hr front desk, easy walking access to village center and marina area.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Five: Thursday, March 19 - Laguna Cartagena National Wildlife Refuge (NWR)/D...
Laguna Cartagena National Wildlife Refuge (NWR)/Dinner and Birding review/Free time

Breakfast: Continental Breakfast at the hotel including options such as eggs, sliced bacon or sausages, sliced bread or toast with jam/jelly/butter, pancakes or waffles with syrup, cornflakes or other cereal, coffee/tea, orange/grapefruit juice

Morning: FIELD TRIP:Birding at the Laguna Cartagena National Wildlife Refuge. The lagoon is the only freshwater marsh of significant size remaining in SW Puerto Rico. Birding a section of two trails: one which intersects wetlands and enters the perfect habitat for waders, waterfowl such as rare West-Indian Whistling Ducks, Caribbean Coots, galinules and Wilson’s Snipes; the other with savannah-like uplands known for Troupials, Mangrove Cuckoos, Antillean Euphonias, sparrows and grasquits.

Lunch: Lunch at local restaurant

Afternoon: FREE TIME: Opportunity to pack and get ready for tomorrow's early departure. Perfect time for pictures by the garden or pool area.

Dinner: Buffet-style dinner at La Villa Parguera hotel and review of bird list. Tips for the following day

Lodging: Parador Villa Parguera

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Inn

Description: At the Hampton Inn & Suites® hotel in San Juan, they want to make your stay perfect. So if you want to surf the web on your laptop, do so with our free high speed internet access. Run a few miles in our exercise room, or swim some laps in the pool. You'll even find a convenience store at our hotel in San Juan. If you're looking for recommendations on what to do and where to eat in San Juan, just ask the staff at our San Juan hotel and they'll be happy to help!

Contact info:
6530 Isla Verde Avenue
San Juan, PR 00979 Puerto Rico
phone: +7877918777
web: hamptoninn.hilton.com/en/hp/hotels/index.jhtml?ctyhocn=SJUHHHX

Room amenities: Coffee Maker Complimentary Hot Breakfast High Speed Internet-No Charge Iron Iron/Ironing Board Lap Desk Curved Shower Rod Easy to Set Alarm Clock Radio LCD Flat Panel TV Waterpik(R) Showerhead

Facility amenities: Baggage Storage Coin Laundry Elevators Laundry/Valet Service Lounge Luggage Hold Multi-Lingual Staff On-Site Convenience Store Room Service Safety Deposit Box

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call the hotel for price
Please call the hotel in San Juan directly. It is very important to mention that you are from World Events/Road Scholar group. The telephone in San Juan is 1-787-791-8777.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day Six: Friday, March 20 - Birding at Guanica Dry Forest /Free Time/Dinner
Breakfast: Continental Breakfast at the hotel including options such as eggs, sliced bacon or sausages, sliced bread or toast with jam/jelly/butter, pancakes or waffles with syrup, cornflakes or other cereal, coffee/tea, orange/grapefruit juice

Morning: CHECK OUT: Hotel check-out and depart for return to San Juan.

FIELD TRIP: Stop at Guanica Dry Forest. Walk several trails through the world’s largest remaining intact tropical dry forest, home to 15 of Puerto Rico’s endemic species, Troupials, the Caribbean Elaenia and winter migrants.

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Free time in the Late Afternoon. Time to enjoy the hotel pool or walk around Isla Verde beach.

Dinner: Dinner at Local Restaurant

Lodging: Hampton Inn by Hilton

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Type: Inn

Description: At the Hampton Inn & Suites® hotel in San Juan, they want to make your stay perfect. So if you want to surf the web on your laptop, do so with our free high speed internet access. Run a few miles in our exercise room, or swim some laps in the pool. You'll even find a convenience store at our hotel in San Juan. If you're looking for recommendations on what to do and where to eat in San Juan, just ask the staff at our San Juan hotel and they'll be happy to help!

Contact info:
6530 Isla Verde Avenue
San Juan, PR 00979 Puerto Rico
phone: +7877918777
web: hamptoninn.hilton.com/en/hp/hotels/index.jhtml?ctyhocn=SJUHHHX

Room amenities: Coffee Maker Complimentary Hot Breakfast High Speed Internet-No Charge Iron Iron/Ironing Board Lap Desk Curved Shower Rod Easy to Set Alarm Clock Radio LCD Flat Panel TV Waterpik(R) Showerhead

Facility amenities: Baggage Storage Coin Laundry Elevators Laundry/Valet Service Lounge Luggage Hold Multi-Lingual Staff On-Site Convenience Store Room Service Safety Deposit Box

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call the hotel for price
Please call the hotel in San Juan directly. It is very important to mention that you are from World Events/Road Scholar group. The telephone in San Juan is 1-787-791-8777.

Check in time: 4:00 PM


Day Seven: Saturday, March 21 - El Yunque National Park/Fajardo/Farewell Dinner a...
El Yunque National Park/Fajardo/Farewell Dinner and Review overall bird sightings

Breakfast: Continental Breakfast at the hotel including options such as eggs, sliced bacon or sausages, sliced bread or toast with jam/jelly/butter, pancakes or waffles with syrup, cornflakes or other cereal, coffee/tea, orange/grapefruit juice

Morning: FIELD TRIP: Depart for El Yunque Rain Forest, first stopping at the El Portal Visitors Center for an orientation about the forest. Later one of the guides will talk about the endangered Puerto Rican parrot and give an update on the present count (as of Fall 2006 the number was known to be 40). Other bird species to be on the lookout for will be the tiny yet colorful Puerto Rican Tody. PLEASE NOTE: Due to its fragile status the Puerto Rican parrot is only being introduced to very remote areas of the Island. Therefore, the chances of seeing one are extremely slim. Most of the parrots seen around San Juan are either the Dominican parrots or Monk parakeets.

Lunch: We'll enjoy a delicious and healthy picnic lunch including fresh salad and/or sandwiches at Palo Colorao Picnic Area.

Afternoon: FIELD TRIP: In transit to San Juan. Stop at Las Cabezas de San Juan in Fajardo. Your eyes and ears will be your best guides during this bird-watching tour at Las Cabezas de San Juan Nature Reserve, where you will learn to identify species of birds found in the area by paying attention to their distinctive songs and plumage.

FIELD TRIP: Depart to Fajardo South area looking for Boobies and other sea birds. Return to Hotel.

Dinner: Farewell dinner at Local Restaurant

Evening: Review overall bird sightings and record number of species plus lifers for group.

Lodging: Hampton Inn by Hilton

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day Eight: Sunday, March 22 - Check Out / Independent Departures
Breakfast: Continental Breakfast at the hotel including options such as eggs, sliced bacon or sausages, sliced bread or toast with jam/jelly/butter, pancakes or waffles with syrup, cornflakes or other cereal, coffee/tea, orange/grapefruit juice

Morning: Program concludes following breakfast. Hotel check-out by 12 PM. Individual departures to the airport. Depending upon airline schedules individuals may wish to share a taxi or "publico" (approx cost $15-20).

We hope you have had a great time on your Road Scholar Puerto Rico adventure and will join us for other rewarding programs in the future. Best wishes on all your journeys!

Meals Included: Breakfast


Important information about your itinerary:
Please know that while we do everything we can to finalize all aspects of our programs well in advance, there are logistics that occasionally must be altered. Our website will reflect the most recent information, and we are committed to providing you with final program details no later than eight weeks prior to the start of programs outside the U.S. and three weeks prior to the start of programs within the U.S. If you ever have questions about your program, please don't hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.
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Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

Included
at no additional cost on this date ...
7 nights of accommodations
20 meals: 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 7 dinners
3 Expert-led lectures
11 Field trips

Ratings

4.2
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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