11586
Costa Rica
The Best of Costa Rica: Exploring Natural Wonders
With more than 5% of the world’s biodiversity, 121 volcanic formations, 801 miles of coastline and hundreds of endemic birds, Costa Rica is a true Mecca for nature lovers to explore.
Rating (4.88)
Program No. 11586RJ
Length
12 days
Starts at
2,499
Special Offer
Click on Dates & Prices below to see special offer details.
Flights start at
455
125 Reviews
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4.88 Average
Robert
(5)

Great trip! Lots to learn about one of the more beautiful parts of the world. Small group and excellent guide made for a very enjoyable program.

Anne
(5)

Excellent program. Christian was a great guide - very insightful, informative and humorous. The trip attendees were an extraordinary group of people. Highly recommend this trip.

Stephen
(5)

A true eco-tourism experience! This equatorial country has so very much to offer - from Atlantic to Pacific coasts, with mountains in the middle. Rain forests that are so lush, full of fantastic colors, & less dense, less colorful, drier but still beautiful still beautiful forests. There is nowhere in this country, outside of the cities, that does not offer a vast variety of wildlife & flora! The birds & vegetation especially are overwhelmingly colorful - that's stated by someone who is not a birder or gardener! I couldn't get enough of our forest walks! And the tour included adventures other than flora & fauna sightings, like white-water rafting & river & coach rides that exposed us to the vast beauties of the land.

Carol
(5)

This tour is an excellent adventure to see the REAL Costa Rica.

Elizabeth
(1)

This tour needs to be completely reorganized to reflect conditions present at this time. The roads are very bad and require participants to spend hours on a bus on bad roads. The bus used does not have a bathroom and that requires special bathroom stops at places that charge $1 US dollar to use the toilet per person paid by the user. The bus also does not have a refrigerated compartment where bottles of water could be stored. Instead, the guide buys 3-gallon bottles of water and refills participants own bottles with the stale warm water. On my tour in Cuba we had a fully equipped comfortable bus and we were supplied with two bottles of cold water from the refrigerator every day. One would think, in Costa Rica, the same would be used. I was very disappointed with many aspects of this tour.

Nina
(5)

Road Scholar is the way to travel if your goal is to learn about the country you are visiting. My experience on this first trip with Road Scholar has convinced me to do it again when I travel. I want my travel to be a learning experience and not just relaxing at a resort.

Mark
(5)

This trip provided fantastic wildlife viewing opportunities. It was my first time in these habitats so everything was new and different.

Ben
(5)

Great trip. Excellent Gui but the schedule is filled with things de and driver made us feel safe and aware of what we were seeing at all times. Guide (William Suarez) was excellent. Beautiful Scenery, very good accommodations and food. This is a very busy trip. It covers a wide range of Costa Rica in a fairly short time. There is little free time but the schedule is filled with things you will be glad you saw later.

Judy
(5)

It was interesting to experience 3 very different climatic zones. It's important to bring binoculars because the animals are often far away and the birds in flight. This tour was a very enjoyable experience and Cristian a superb guide.

Patricia
(5)

Exceeded my expectations! Our skilled guide helped us see so much more wildlife than we would have seen by ourselves. So relaxing having Road Scholar handle all the details.

CAROLYN
(5)

I really enjoyed my trip to Costa Rica with Road Scholars, it was just what I wanted, a little bit of each part of the country with 2 nights in each location to balance against time on the bus. Every day was packed with outdoor activities, presentations by local experts, and both nature and culture. The birds and wildlife we saw were amazing, and we visited several national parks, those were important for me. Our lodging was very high end, places I would not normally be able to afford, that was a treat.

Janet
(5)

This trip is terrific. The lecture on biodiversity when we arrived set the stage for what we were to see, and understand, in the days to come. The diversity of flora and fauna was amazing. The guide Roger was knowledgable and experienced. Not only was he was able to identify birds, monkeys and plants, he knew where to look for them. There were many hours of travel on this trip but worth the effort.

Truda
(5)

This trip is all it is described Wonderful ! Enjoyed the entire time.

Donald
(5)

Costa Rica is an amazing country and we experienced it with a great tour guide who was able to present Costa Rica from one side of the country to the other. It was a marvelous trip and our group left as friends and the trip seemed over far too early. Thank you Roger and our thanks to the wonderful people of Costa Rica.

Deb
(5)

This program was informative and fun. I met many interesting people and learned about biodiversity. Our guide and driver were excellent. The lecturers were well informed and gave interesting talks. I would recommend this trip to anyone who wants to experience a different culture and learn about nature.

Jo
This reviewer did not give a star rating.

This tour gave me an "eyes-on" experience of ecosystems, biodiversity, rain forests, biological corridors, sustainable agriculture, and cooperative sustenance. This is definitely a tour for those interested in saving our planet.

Ralph
(5)

If you ever wanted to see tropical rain forests flora, fauna and volcanoes ....this is the trip to take in the winter.

Paul
(5)

If you've never been to Costa Rica (and even if you have) this program is a wonderful eye-opening experience that will give you a taste of the country you would never get on your own.

Elizabeth
(5)

WOW! Thank you Road Scholar for giving us the time of our lives. We went outside our comfort zone and always felt safe. Pura Vida!

Debbie
(5)

This program is THE program for experiencing Costa Rica. So many good people everywhere. The amount of wildlife is phenomenal,& our group leader Erick Guzman made sure we saw much of it. It's a trip you dislike seeing come to an end.... many wonderful experiences, forever catalogued in numerous images & videos. Great memories. And I may be back!

Randin
(5)

This was one of the best trips I have ever been on! Costa Rica was beautiful. The people were so friendly and had so much pride in their country. The trip was full of great adventures - beautiful birds, white water rafting, hanging bridges, a crocodile safari, and the lodging was wonderful. A great guide and bus driver. Better than I expected!!!

Robert
(5)

This is the second Costa Rica program that I have had the pleasure to experience. I also attended "The Taste of Costa Rica" program. Both were excellent.

Sue
(5)

Every aspect of our trip was wonderful, travel, sites, food and people. I would highly recommend this trip to anyone.

Jane
(5)

The trip to Costa Rica was a not-to-be missed learning experience. The country is not lush like Hawaii but the diversity is incredible. You may only see one or two of a particular plant, animal or bird but that makes what you do see even more inspiring. And the people are justifiably proud and very welcoming.

Sharon
(5)

The website is easy to use and provides needed information when trying to decide what trip to take.

Maryanne
(5)

This trip is very informative and fun. Activity level is less strenuous than listed except for the hanging bridges.

Danny
(5)

The Best of Costa Rica, Exploring Natural Wonders, in January was a perfect time of year to visit Costa Rica, coast to coast. You will experience the food, culture, exotic birds, and animals, and history of this compact and complex country. Our guide was knowledgeable, personable and helpful, and the accommodations were very nice. The physical terrain is beautiful and able to be hiked with a minimum of effort. The wide range of natural forests, plants, and animal life we experienced in the time we were there was amazing. I was not an avid bird watcher before, but now I see why people visit this country just for that reason alone. North Americans who care for the environment and beautiful places share much with in common with Costa Rica.

David
(5)

Wonderful trip: nice accommodations, plentiful good food, fascinating ecodiversity and history, welcoming friendly people. The guide was knowledgeable , detailed, funny, organized, and a nice guy who enjoys his job and really knows what he's doing.

Poul
(5)

Excellent and diverse program on Costa Rica.

Ellen
(5)

I would rate this trip 10 stars if I could! Each day was better than the last, with so many fabulous animals, birds, plants and beautiful locations to explore and learn about at each stop. Our guide and bus driver were both outstanding and made me feel very safe. The food and accommodations ranged from great to exceptional. My only regret? It ended too soon!

James
(5)

This was our first group tour and we were not confident that we would like the structure of the group tour. We found this tour to exceed our wildest hopes. Jorge, our group leader, made the program a huge success and the fellow travelers on the trip were wonderful. We gained much more from the tour than if we had gone on our own. We are now convinces that this is the way to travel.

Sandy
(5)

Fabulous trip if you like monkeys, sloths, iguanas, morning bird walks, crocodiles, white water rafting, crossing hanging bridges in the rainforest, volcanos, beaches, hot springs...!

Bill
(5)

Costa Rica "Natural Wonders" tour packed in as much as possible and provided a great overview of the tropical in 12 days. I couldn't have asked for anything better!

Rodney
(5)

This should be a must tour visit for any traveler wanting to learn about countries in Central America. Friendly absolute helpful local people. Great food, and great road scholar staff and community. Rodney Benson, Flushing, NY.

Lauren
(5)

I learned so much about Costa Rica. I didn't know much about it before, but have a new respect for all they are doing for ecology. The biodiversity of the rain forest was amazing and seeing it up close was fascinating. Our guide was very competent and ran everything smoothly.

Mary
(5)

The program was perfect in every way. Logistics were handled seamlessly and I felt safe and relaxed in the care of our group leader and our bus driver. Costa Rica delivered fascinating birds and wildlife continuously throughout the trip. Our leader was an excellent spotter and inclusive; he excelled in helping everyone in the group find the elusive creature darting amongst the leaves. We saw spider, howler, and capuchin monkeys, sloths, coatimundi, agouti, crocodiles, iguanas, morpho butterflies, 8 different types of herons, hummingbirds, numerous colorful songbirds, curassow, crested guans, toucans, trogons, parrots, parakeets, macaws, and many others. Many of the meals were traditional Costa Rican, with grilled meat or fish, beans, rice, salad, and good vegetable choices. Fresh fruit and juices were available at every meal—the pineapple was exquisite and even the bananas were special. Sharing the beauty and awe with like-minded people enhanced the experience. I wish everyone could do this trip!

Paul
(5)

This trip was a wonderful immersion into how Costa Rica developed from the results of volcanic eruptions along with plate shifts due to tectonic activity and becoming a land bridge that allowed both humans and animals to migrate between North and South America. We also were educated about the exploration by navigators from Europe and the riches of coffee, bananas and other minerals for trade, the stripping of the rain forests for use by cattle ranches and expansion of plantation farming and then the realization of the important purpose of what the rain forests offered. It was that discovery that has allowed the rain forest to return and what ecotourism and the biodiversity of Costa Rica makes it a unique and worthwhile place to visit.

Louise
(5)

This program is right for anyone who wants an exciting, educational and enjoyable experience. It is sooo much more than what is described in the brochure.

Karen
(5)

Wonderful experience! On the go and learning new and exciting things every day, rain or shine! Good food and the accommodations made you feel one with nature. Our group size was 17 and it was perfect and we enjoyed each other's company. Our guide Javier was fantastic and our driver Hector was a hoot! They really made us feel part of the Costa Rican culture.

Susan
(5)

This program is interactive. Some hiking...some bus riding...very welcoming for solo travelers. It's hot and super rainy. Not near as many bugs as I thought there would be. For sure a winner!!!

Margo
(5)

We had such a great time on this adventure. The Road Scholar tour leader was exceptional and the locations chosen were fascinating and were made easily accessible to our group. Terrific value for the money!

Jackie
(5)

I highly recommend this trip. I learned a lot and met great people. Pedro was the tour guide and did an awesome job

Ellen
(5)

This is the most fabulous trip. Lots of activity, just enough downtime...beach, ahhh!! lovely! The guides were superb! Pedro B. is passionate about his country and what a wealth of knowledge, birds, wildlife, plant-life, he knew a lot about everything. The food just could not have been any better. Healthy foods rule in Costa Rica, lots of beautiful fruit, and seafood galore! The green turtles in September were 'out' on our night walk, at least 5 of them, huge...be careful on the beach, mud and holes to stumble into...bring your sticks, worth the tricky walk to see five foot long/four wide sea turtles laying 150 eggs. Just awe inspiring, and the monkeys, oh my...mama's crossing over the river making a bridge in the branches across the river for baby to cross. And crocs, yes crocs in the river. You will not be sorry you went on this trip. Hiked about 4 miles several days, great exercise, some exertion, but lots of help from the guides for those who need it. 2nd Road Scholar trip and will do more based on this one.

Angeline
(5)

This was a fantastic tour! Top-notch all the way around. It really exceeded my expectations.

Ann
(5)

I had a fabulous time on this trip. Costa Rica is a beautiful country rich in wildlife. The people are warm and friendly.

Lois
(5)

This is a trip for the nature lovers and people who love to hike through the woods. We saw gorgeous flowers and beautiful animals and birds not seen at home. The trails were not hard to walk on and some of the safaris were by boat.

Janet
(5)

I consider this to have been the 'trip of a lifetime' and I am thankful that Road Scholar made this possible for me.

Marc
(5)

Dear Road Scholar, My wife and I each separately reviewed our trip soon after returning. However, looking at your listed reviews today (5 months after our trip), I am puzzled and surprised not to see our reviews, or any reviews from anyone from our Group's trip. How do you explain that? Marc, Program 11586 (2-26-2018)

James
(5)

What a wonderful trip. I was pleased to have been able to share it with my wife and all the new friends who joined us on this tour.

Priscilla
(5)

Think you know Costa Rica? Challenge that with "The Best of Costa Rica"! You will learn "ins and outs" of its history, development, and its future in ecotourism. The rest of the world can learn from Costa Rica's resolve to retain and share its valuable and unique flora and fauna. I certainly did!

Margret Joan
(5)

Amazing experience at a reasonable price!

Colette
(5)

The entire experience was amazing! Our guide Roger was knowledgable and could sight things great and small. There were times he pointed something out and it still took us time to see it! If we had attempted to do this trip on our own, we would never have learned or seen the things we did.

Virginia
(5)

This tour will take you to five exotic and beautiful areas of Costa Rica. The food is fresh and fabulous. There are daily opportunities to photograph unusual birds and animals.

Celeste
(5)

The Road Scholar Costa Rica experience was so wonderful and rich in experiences and information. The guide, Roger, the driver, the program content, the lodging and food were all exceptional. If you like diversity, wildlife, flora, geology, culture and a rich experience with residents of this small and wonderful country there is not a better trip you could take.

Robert
(5)

Everything about this trip was 5 star from the accomadations to the food to the outings and the environmental. Without a doubt the guide was the best, he made the trip memorable by sharing what he knew regarding each area. From beginning to end the trip more than met my expectations. Photo opps were omptimal to say the least.

Ron
This reviewer did not give a star rating.

This trip exceeded my expectations. We had a very congenial group of 16, which is about the right size. Our tour leader, Roger Melendez was outstanding. He is a great naturalist and a very nice person to travel with. His encyclopedic knowledge of the flora and fauna was amazing and he has the sharp eyes and knowledge of animal behavior that make it possible for everyone to enjoy the experience. Our driver, Alvaro Montero was great. He took our bus down some roads that I would hesitate traveling in my car, and he and Roger diagnosed the a problem with the AC and fixed it. We stayed in first-rate lodges and resorts. The food was good, but not exceptional. (Lots of rice and beans every day, but that's the diet in Costa Rica, so it's part of the experience.) I enjoyed the wildlife viewing and absorbed just enough of the recent history of the country to prod me into doing more study of how they became the country we see today. I'm convinced that PURA VIDA is more than just a slogan. We traveled from Caribbean to Pacific, lowlands to 11000 ft. If there weren't so many places to go and so little time, I'd go back to see more of Costa Rica. Thanks for a wonderful experience.

Lynne
(5)

This trip was superb! I encourage you to go if you want to experience the Costa Rican rain forest, see its animals, and learn about Costa Rica. Our guide, Cristian, was superb! It definitely is "Keep the Pace". We were on the go most days from 7 AM until 7 PM. There were some days where we had a few hours of free time in the afternoon. The accommodations are quite comfortable. In April it was hot and humid, but often cooled at night. Take comfortable clothes, walking shoes, bug spray, sun block, and binoculars. Definitely 5 Stars!

Sharon
(4)

The program allows you to share your experience with others who have the same feelings about improving the earth.

Patricia
(5)

This was my first Road Scholar trip and I loved every minute of it! It was extremely well organized...we did not have to worry about a thing. The speakers, the host, the driver every experience was well thought out, planned and executed with intelligence, love, kindness and grace. I could not have asked for a better experience.

Mimi
(4)

WHOEVER PUT THE 16 TRAVELERS TOGETHER DID AN AWESOME JOB. THE MOST CONGENIAL GROUP I HAVE BEEN WITH.

Nancy
(5)

What an outstanding trip! Excellent lectures by people who were passionate about the biodiversity, protecting and increasing their beautiful rain forests and wildlife. Even if you are not a birder, you will enjoy their beauty. This program has a good mix of wildlife, active outdoors with whitewater rafting and daily walks, tours of coffee, chocolate and hearts of palm growers, farming and a school visit. We visited 5 different environments during the two weeks. The food was healthy and tasty. Costa Rican food is not spicy. Our guide Roger Melendez was outstanding. His knowledge of bird and wildlife was excellent. Great spotting skills. He was patient and well-organized and i never felt hurried. Great trip with 16 congenial fellow travelers.

Rimma
(4)

There should be an option on the post trip survey to save the draft and go back to review and edit.

Karla
(5)

This is an exceptional trip. Although a fair bit of driving is required, it allows you to visit 5 unique and distinct areas. Cristian our guide was an outstanding naturalist. This trip far exceeded any expectations I had. Loved it!!

Susan
(5)

This trip was our best ever! Excellent on all counts!!

Alan
(5)

I really enjoyed the diversity of this trip. It was amazing seeing monkeys, crocodiles, iguanas, macaws, toucans, and many other creatures in their natural habitat. Our trip leader’s knowledge of these creatures and where to find them was most impressive. I also enjoyed visiting the chocolate, hearts of palm, and coffee plantations and listening to speakers talk about how they changed professions in order to help preserve the wildlife in Costa Rica.

Evelyn
(5)

Exceptional Program, Wonderful Fellow Travelers, Excellent Guide Pedro and Bus driver Marcos

Nancy
(4)

This is a very interesting program, but it is fast paced and involves a lot of bus travel

Thomas
(5)

If you are looking to be awed, this is your trip

Sue
(5)

This trip is a true “sampler” of the best of Costa Rica! Experienced so many new things, met great people, learned so much....and had great fun doing it! Nothing like waking at 5AM to howler monkeys! The biodiversity of this country is awe inspiring!

Michelle
(5)

This was a great experience that I will always remember. A beautiful, lush country with an unimaginable diversity of landscape and wildlife. This is also a country that faves challenges. This program gave a thorough overview of these issues while providing a great experiential education. I would highly recommend this program to friends and family.

Mary
(5)

This program was terrific! The guide was excellent: very knowledgeable and fun. The lectures were interesting and informative, and the choices of places to see was perfect. I would highly recommend it.

Andrew
(4)

The natural wonders of Costa Rica speak for themselves, this program allows you to find and experience many of them in a short period of time.

Gail
(5)

A wonderful way to see the rich wildlife and learn about the Costa Rican story of environmental stewardship. We learned so much and had a ball!

Mary
(5)

We really enjoyed this trip to Costa Rica. The diversity of locations and of experiences was great. Our guide, Javier, was excellent. We learned a lot about the country and had fun doing it.

Veronica
(5)

The Best of CostaRica really lived up to it,s title. This is a fantastic program from sea to sea through lowland rainforest , transition forest and mountain rainforest , rich with exotic flora and fauna. Images that will linger in my brain forever.

John
(5)

This Costa Rica program was wonderful! The country's dedication to ecologically sustainable development was evident in every "Tico" we interacted with and should serve as a model for many other nations.

Linda
(5)

We just returned from "The Best of Costa Rica: Exploring Natural Wonders." It was an amazing trip. We learned so much about how truly diverse Costa Rica is biologically, geographically, culturally, and politically. Our guide was extremely knowledgeable and made every day and every activity exceptional.

Grace
(5)

This was our first Road Scholar trip and it was excellent--very well designed. Although we spent a lot of time on the bus, we conversed with other participants, had frequent stops, and were able to see lots of different areas of the country with varying climate, flora, and fauna. Our leader was excellent, and speakers provided new insights with their lectures and stories. Food and accommodations were all superb in my opinion.

Ross
(5)

A most interesting and enjoyable program. Strongly recommended, especially with William Suarez as group leader.

William
(4)

Got a 404 error with one of the links in the email.... https://evaluations.roadscholar.org/account/prog_eval_request..asp?Id=1-F609X5 Second link was fine

Linda
(5)

This trip expanded my knowledge of the people, customs and development of Costa Rica. I learned so much and respect this lovely country and its goals to preserve its precious natural resources and to support its citizens.

Lorraine
This reviewer did not give a star rating.

Enjoyed the tour, especially the white water rafting. Heart of palm, and coffee plantations were very interesting, also. My only complaint was the last few days we traveled many hours over winding, steep, dangerous roads to get to the highlands. We only stayed there one night after all that traveling, and only went on two short hikes. However, our guide was phenomenal. He knew so much about the country, the wildlife and vegetation. Happy that we went on the tour.

David
(4)

Pedro Bosques as group leader was excellent. Small group size at 17, everyone very collegial. Tour is fairly quick paced. Lectures are excellent. Only negative was changing lodging every other day. Would be nice to have a 3 day stay in middle of the tour with some downtime to recharge your batteries.

Mary
(5)

most of the descriptions are accurate, but it might be nice to note that they vary depending on what time of year the tour takes place. We didn't tour a pineapple plantation - but did a Heart of Palms tour instead. You cover that pretty good in that some changes may be made. One typo I found on this page: https://www.roadscholar.org/find-an-adventure/11586/the-best-of-costa-rica-exploring-natural-wonders/itinerary/1 Day 3: Morning: We will to a local dock and ... missing a verb there.

Anne
(5)

This trip led us to five areas of Costa Rica where we looked at the natural world. Many of the lectures were above average. Except for one hotel, the accommodations ranged from very good to exceptional. Our tour guide was exceptional. I would attend this tour again.

Kenneth
(5)

Wonderful trip. Great overview of Costa Rica. Enjoyed the trips in to the rain forest and the interaction with guide and cultural activities.

Claudia
(5)

The trip was wonderful and covered an incredible amount of the country. The lecturers were excellent. A suggestion would be to have a lecture before the trip of the day to get better insight into the area. Also, even though the group was small, we couldn't always see the birds the lecturer was pointing out if we were in the back of the line. They should use better signals such as bird at 12oclock etc. rather than saying"over here." The first hotel we stayed at didn't have grab bars in the bathroom and very slippery mats. I had an accident the first night and hit my head badly getting out of the shower. All bathrooms should have had these bars. The food was amazing except for the last night at the Wyndham. It was very disappointing and not festive for the last night. The bus driver was courteous,friendly and extremely careful on the hairpin and bumpy roads. Our guide Pedro was so wonderful nothing could have been better for us. The places we stayed at, especially the lodges were excellent. I realizes because of the many places we visited there wasn't much time to "relax" in the beautiful surroundings. Another night would be better than two nights because the first night was only to sleep getting into the places late, so either extend the program or eliminate some of the traveling which was very far between places.

P.
(5)

The rainforest is a great teacher; birders will be delighted; history buffs will come away better informed about a world outside of the United states

Sue
(5)

I would very much encourage others who are interested in Costa Rica to take this trip. It is so rewarding and gives one a good understanding and respect for Costa Rica and its people. I heartily recommend the program.

Carol
(5)

This trip is so diverse, seeing a lot of Costa Rica. You will see so many birds and other wildlife. This was one of my favorite trips ever.

Linda
(5)

This is the program for you if you value activity, active learning and experiencing a country which is demonstrating how ecology and living in harmony with nature can increase human enjoyment as well as create economic value.

Judith
(5)

This was a fun and very educational program. I would rate it as one of my favorites! I was so impressed with our tour guide, William, a native Costa Rican, and how very well the program was organized. We moved thru all the ecological zones of the country in an organized fashion and always had a lecture first before we physically explored the area. I highly recommend this program!

Anna
(5)

One of the most interesting trips I have ever taken...You will learn so much about nature and the amazing biodiversity of plant and animal life in this country. It is a small country but packed with coastal areas, mountains, volcanoes, and a central valley. And you will see some of all of these areas on this tour.

Eileen
(1)

Unless you are an avid birder or like to see animals in the wild and at a distance, think twice about this trip. Activities include an optional bird walk and a rainforest walk every day. The different types of rainforests are not different to the untrained eye. Bad weather (ie rain) can obscure the mountains and views. The other activities and steam table food did not make up for my lack of intense interest in birds and the rain meant I was almost always wet. Look for another trip if you want warmth and sun.

Bill
(5)

Loved the Costa Rica Road Scholar trip and will be traveling with them again.

Joan
(5)

The Best of Costa Rica Natural Wonders is a fantastic tour. A perfect combination of learning and activities. Our guide was the best - so knowledgeable about his country!

Ursula
(5)

Really enjoyed Costa Rica with our guide Cristian. Our primary interest was birding and it did not disappoint. The people in our group, our instructors, hotel staff were all lovely; genuinely friendly and welcoming. Watching kindergarteners 'graduate' was precious.

Paul
(5)

"Pura vida"--catch it!

Robert
(5)

This program is very "nature" oriented. If you love birding and seeing mammals, reptiles and birds in their natural habitat, then this trip is for you. The hotels in the nature reserves added a special event - being awakened by Howler Monkeys and having White Faced Monkeys watch you eat breakfast. The rain becomes part of the experience and did not impact the trip at all.

Jim
(5)

The Best of Costa Rica: Exploring Natural Wonders was the very best Road Scholar trip I have experienced. Lead by a skilled, highly effective guide experienced nature at its best, most interesting, see animals unique to that region, including sighting the very rare sighting of a jaguar. I was active every day. Well fed. Tried each night and eager for more each morning. Great adventure! Thank you Road Scholar and Holbrook Travel.

Charles
(5)

Excellent leadership and an exciting adventure with wonderful people! Exceeded all expectations! The speakers contributed to the program theme and the accommodations were outstanding! Thank you Edwin Ramirez for your knowledge, patience and leading us to the best discoveries! Pura Vida!

Spurgeon
(5)

Costa Rica natural wonders is an exceptional program showing the broad biodiversity across the country. Extremely informative and engaging for all. Our guide was exceptional in every way making for the most enjoyable experience ever.

Gerald
(5)

We wanted to experience the flora and fauna of Costa Rica's rain forest. We got to see lot's of bird varieties and animals. We stayed several nights in "eco hotels" that had no AC, but the nights were cool and we could hear the birds and monkeys through the open windows.

Therese
(5)

This program is excellent. You are given information about the history and culture along with flora and fauna.

Stephanie
(5)

I was able to cover much of the country of Costa Rica in 12 days! Saw amazing wildlife and nature every single day, let by an amazing guide!

Irene
(5)

This program gives a very thorough understanding of different of many diverse areas of Costa Rica and it's biology and history.

Crystal
(5)

This was an excellent trip to Costa Rica. It is great for seeing nature, learning about Costa Rica, seeing all the different areas. The lodges are all wonderful places to stay at. Our tour guide, Javier, was an excellent leader, very knowledgeable, kind and caring.

Robin
(5)

We could not have been more pleased with our Road Scholar trip to Costa Rica! The gorgeous landscape, wildlife, and lovely Costa Rican people were a delight at every turn. Our guide, Edwin Ramirez, and guide-in-training Wendy made our experience remarkable. Their expertise, warmth, and professionalism are to be commended! Even our bus driver, Alvaro, was superb! We highly recommend this program!

Barbara
(5)

I would recommend this trip to anyone who is interested in Costa Rica. It is a beautiful county that strives to have a better "carbon footprint" in the next few years.

Mary
(5)

A wonderful experience! Great leadership and wonderful accommodations.

Lorrie
(5)

The Costa Rica Natural Wonders Program was a very enjoyable learning experience and a fun vacation. Not only did I learn a tremendous amount about the ecology and wildlife of this beautiful Central American country, I made new friends. I am blown away by the knowledge, sense of humor and warmth of our guide. Our van driver was also very knowledgable and extremely courteous and helpful. If you want to see alot and learn alot in a beautiful, warm, welcoming place I highly recommend this trip!

June
(5)

This program offers a wide variety of experiences and exposure to many parts of the country. Although there are many miles covered by bus, rest stops are well planned and additional commentary by the guide adds interest. If you are interested in nature (plants, animals and birds) this is the trip to take. Walking trips were nicely paced with much stopping to look (and learn). I rate this as one of my all time favorite trips.

Eleanor
(5)

The trip was outstanding. We saw so many more turtles, plants, animals and birds than I would have expected. Edwin was an excellent and knowledgeable guide, and Hector, our bus driver, was very helpful. It rained but it didn't bother us. Great Trip

Barbara
(5)

We had a FABULOUS 12 day trip to Costa Rica with Road Scholar. We saw so much Magnificent Rainforest, lots of monkeys PLUS much more. Our first major stop Tortuguera was my favorite. – This is one of the few places in the world where the green sea turtles go to lay their eggs. We were there at the right time of year, and actually saw a female turtle lay her eggs (80-100) and cover them with sand from the beach. Afterwards they return to the sea. The eggs are left to hatch into turtles, and return to the sea (if lucky). We adopted a turtle - her name is Bobbi. In Tortugueroa- we didn't need an alarm clock - the Howler monkeys let you know the sun has risen. Other highlights of the trip included the cloud forest, Arenal Volcano, a crocodile and bird excursion, river rafting, and more. Our fellow travels were all very friendly and our group leader did an excellent job of meeting the diverse needs of our group. Food, accommodations, travel vehicles, places seen and educational component were all great. We highly recommend visiting Costa Rica. Over 25% of the country has been set aside to retain its natural state. For more details call Road Scholar, and then book yourself a trip of a lifetime. Costa Rica with Road Scholar was such an enlightening and invigorating; we can’t wait to book another trip with Road Scholar.

Richard
(5)

Perfect for a first time visit to Costa Rica. You see a lot of the country in a short time. If there is a place you really like, you can return when you make your second visit.

Cynthia
(5)

This program really does include the best of Costa Rica--from the two sea shores to the mountains and everything in-between. It is an active program with not an abundance of free time and lots of time for interacting with the people of Costa Rica at the sites we visited.

Elizabeth
(5)

What a great adventure! I was amazed and awestruck at the variety of flora and fauna the group saw. I was overwhelmed daily with a sense of gratitude at being able to discover and experience this beautiful part of the world.

Penelope
(5)

My email is not letting me answer your questionnaire. This was my first Road Scholar trip and I could not have asked for a better trip!The guide, Cristian Gamboa, was outstanding! He was very knowledgeable about the flora & fauna as well as many other things(about Costa Rica) which we asked him. His English was excellent. The group was very compatible & curious about everything. We had fun! Even the bus driver, Frank, would point things out to us. Sometimes we stopped if something interesting was occurring. The variety of places we visited were diverse & varied as were the accomodations. My travels went smoothly,also. I have a small criticism: the National Geographic map & the travel guide were useless & expensive. The folder we were given on site had a good map which Cristian marked for any of us who wanted it.

Wendy
(5)

Wonderful tour- amazing birds, animals, fauna, new friends, and the most outstanding guides every- our walking encyclopedia- here's to you Wendy and Pedro! http://wwatling.zenfolio.com/p188610176

Ray
(5)

I have guided many tours myself and was very impressed with every aspect of our Costa Rica experience. I plan to participate many more times with Road Scholar.

Mary Jo
This reviewer did not give a star rating.

My first Road Scholar trip surpassed all expectations. Awesome would be an understatement. Our tour guide Christian could not have done a better job. I'm sold on Costa Rica and Road Scholar. Can't wait to book my next trip which will be this year too.

Suellen
(5)

I loved the combination of actual experiences with informative guided walks and lectures. We experienced the incredible diversity of climate zones, vegetation, plants, animals, birds, and butterflies in such a tiny country. Our guide was knowledgable and personable and the other people on the tour were friendly and interesting. It was an unforgettalbe experience!

Mike
(5)

This was our fourth Road Scholar trip in Costa Rica. We have enjoyed them all. We have had new worthwhile learning experiences every time. The quality of guides, talks, drivers, fellow travelers, and accommodations remains consistently high.

Rod
This reviewer did not give a star rating.

The itinerary has been very well developed. The focus is on biodiversity so our visits have been to organic growers (coffee, pineapple, and a general farm). We’ve had lectures by experts along the way and they’ve given us backgrounds on how Costa Rica is developing their national parks to enhance the various wildlife ‘corridors’ to preserve the wildlife. We had stops that start on the eastern side of the country and traverse all the way to the Pacific side. The daily pace of the tour is jam packed…which I love. We get to see alot and each stop has been carefully thought out to offer us a key element in the various biological areas in Costa Rica. The daily pace is also well thought out. We often started the day with an optional 6am bird walk .. usually just around the hotels. We then would have breakfast at 7 then we leave for the morning activity at 8am. The bus rides were fine. The bus was comfortable although the leg room was limited for my 6 ft. 3 in husband who was really only comfortable in the very back seats .. which wasn’t a problem. What made the trip AMAZING were the leaders. The main lead, Pedro was extremely knowledgeable about the wildlife and is amazingly good at spotting the wild life (try finding a 2 inch green-black frog in a rainforest at night). He was kind, efficient, knowledgeable, had a great scope that brought monkeys, birds, etc very close. He was also patient. When you are leading twenty ‘older’ people around for 2 weeks, patience is an absolute requirement. He handled everything with patience and respect. These issues ran the gamut of keys locked in rooms, malfunctioning room safes, straggling guests, guests who got irritated due to fatigue, medical issues, etc. There was a second leader, Wendy, who is also very well versed in the area and the wildlife. She was in training for her own stint as a lead and I know she’ll be great! Words of caution..it was hot and humid. Be prepared for it - hat, water bottle, sun screen, dark glasses.

Carol
(5)

This program was very informative and was a great overview of all different regions of Costa Rica from the Caribbean up over the continental divide and down to the Pacific. Our guide, Pedro, was extremely knowledgeable about every aspect of Cost Rica's natural world and was also just a delightful person. I would recommend this to anyone who wants to experience the natural world of Costa Rica up and close.






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