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17988
Costa Rica

Costa Rica at a Slower Pace: Natural Wonders by Water & Land

Enjoy the natural history, biodiversity and friendly attitude of Costa Rica in a non-strenuous way that allows you to learn the true meaning of “pura vida.”
Rating (4.96)
Program No. 17988RJ
Length
11 days
Starts at
2,479
Flights start at
500
Costa Rica

Costa Rica at a Slower Pace: Natural Wonders by Water & Land

Enjoy the natural history, biodiversity and friendly attitude of Costa Rica in a non-strenuous way that allows you to learn the true meaning of “pura vida.”
Length
11 days
Starts at
2,479
Flights start at
500
Length
11 days
Rating (4.96)
Starts at
2,479
Flights start at
500
Program No. 17988RJ

Your well-being is our #1 priority

To make your experience as safe as possible, we require all participants to be fully vaccinated. See our Safety Roadmap

Enroll with Confidence

We want your Road Scholar learning adventure to be something to look forward to—not worry about. Learn more

Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
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Price will update based on selection
Prices displayed below are based on per person,doubleoccupancy.
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Sep 21 - Oct 1, 2022
Starting at
2,479
Oct 26 - Nov 5, 2022
Starting at
2,479
Nov 2 - Nov 12, 2022
Starting at
2,679
Nov 28 - Dec 8, 2022
Starting at
2,679
Dec 4 - Dec 14, 2022
Starting at
2,679
Dec 7 - Dec 17, 2022
Starting at
2,679
Jan 9 - Jan 19, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Jan 12 - Jan 22, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Jan 19 - Jan 29, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Jan 26 - Feb 5, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Feb 2 - Feb 12, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Feb 9 - Feb 19, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Feb 15 - Feb 25, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Feb 23 - Mar 5, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Feb 27 - Mar 9, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Mar 8 - Mar 18, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Mar 13 - Mar 23, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Apr 12 - Apr 22, 2023
Starting at
2,749
Apr 17 - Apr 27, 2023
Starting at
2,749
May 8 - May 18, 2023
Starting at
2,749
Sep 25 - Oct 5, 2023
Starting at
2,749
Oct 9 - Oct 19, 2023
Starting at
2,749
Oct 23 - Nov 2, 2023
Starting at
2,749
Nov 2 - Nov 12, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Nov 8 - Nov 18, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Dec 3 - Dec 13, 2023
Starting at
2,949
Dec 10 - Dec 20, 2023
Starting at
2,949
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Sep 21 - Oct 1, 2022
Starting at
2,779
Oct 26 - Nov 5, 2022
Starting at
2,779
Nov 2 - Nov 12, 2022
Starting at
3,129
Nov 28 - Dec 8, 2022
Starting at
3,129
Dec 4 - Dec 14, 2022
Starting at
3,129
Dec 7 - Dec 17, 2022
Starting at
3,129
Jan 9 - Jan 19, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Jan 12 - Jan 22, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Jan 19 - Jan 29, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Jan 26 - Feb 5, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Feb 2 - Feb 12, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Feb 9 - Feb 19, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Feb 15 - Feb 25, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Feb 23 - Mar 5, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Feb 27 - Mar 9, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Mar 8 - Mar 18, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Mar 13 - Mar 23, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Apr 12 - Apr 22, 2023
Starting at
3,079
Apr 17 - Apr 27, 2023
Starting at
3,079
May 8 - May 18, 2023
Starting at
3,079
Sep 25 - Oct 5, 2023
Starting at
3,079
Oct 9 - Oct 19, 2023
Starting at
3,079
Oct 23 - Nov 2, 2023
Starting at
3,079
Nov 2 - Nov 12, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Nov 8 - Nov 18, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Dec 3 - Dec 13, 2023
Starting at
3,429
Dec 10 - Dec 20, 2023
Starting at
3,429

At a Glance

Enjoy the natural history, biodiversity and friendly attitude of Costa Rica at a leisurely pace that allows you to learn the true meaning of “pura vida.” Discover the rainforest, Arenal Volcano and the Pacific coastline. Interact with Costa Ricans from campesinos (farmers) to small business owners and American expatriates. Experience Costa Rica by water on boat excursions exploring the Sarapiqui and Tarcoles rivers and an ocean canoe ride. This program has been specially designed to minimize walking and travel time and maximize opportunities to connect with your surroundings.
Activity Level
Easy Going
Walking up to a few blocks unassisted and climbing stairs. Activities take place near the hotels. Program not recommended for participants with walkers/rollators or wheelchairs due to limited storage space on the bus and lack of handicap accessible locations.
Small Group
Small Group
Love to learn and explore in a small-group setting? These adventures offer small, personal experiences with groups of 13 to 24 participants.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Observe the Arenal Volcano from two prime vantage points and learn how scientists monitor its activity.
  • Encounter the mighty crocodile and other creatures of the mangroves on a Tarcoles River boat excursion.
  • Enjoy several opportunities for informal conversations with Costa Rican people.
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Pedro Bosques
Pedro Bosques is a veteran Road Scholar instructor and group leader, with approximately 20 years of experience in hosting lifelong learners in Costa Rica. Although born in Puntarenas, on Costa Rica’s central Pacific coast, Pedro grew up in San José. His interest in conservation blossomed when he began working at the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve as a field assistant. During this time he colaborated with researchers and biologists in projects including the study of the behavior and migration of the Three-wattled Bellbird and reforestation of the biological corridor in the Monteverde region. Pedro is a certified naturalist leader who enjoys sharing his knowledge with travelers from around the world. He looks forward to hosting you in this program and enhancing your journey in his beautiful country.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Pedro Bosques
Pedro Bosques View biography
Pedro Bosques is a veteran Road Scholar instructor and group leader, with approximately 20 years of experience in hosting lifelong learners in Costa Rica. Although born in Puntarenas, on Costa Rica’s central Pacific coast, Pedro grew up in San José. His interest in conservation blossomed when he began working at the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve as a field assistant. During this time he colaborated with researchers and biologists in projects including the study of the behavior and migration of the Three-wattled Bellbird and reforestation of the biological corridor in the Monteverde region. Pedro is a certified naturalist leader who enjoys sharing his knowledge with travelers from around the world. He looks forward to hosting you in this program and enhancing your journey in his beautiful country.
Profile Image of Alex Ramirez
Alex Ramirez View biography
Raised since age 5 in Chilamate, Costa Rica, Alex Ramirez developed a passion for nature working at a local rainforest lodge and nature reserve, showing a special interest in the gardens, butterflies, birds and frogs. Fluent in English, Alex has conducted important research at INBIO, Costa Rica's Institute for Biodiversity and Conservation Research.
Profile Image of Gilberth Molina
Gilberth Molina View biography
An early interest in plants led Gilberth Molina to work as a gardener for a rainforest lodge in Costa Rica's Caribbean lowlands. There he developed a deep appreciation for the animals and plants of the rainforest and found that he also enjoyed interacting with the lodge's international guests. After studying English and receiving training on the flora, fauna and birds of Costa Rica, Gilberth began leading groups of learners including many Road Scholar participants, sharing his enthusiasm for Costa Rica's natural treasures.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Wild Costa Rica
by Adrian Hepworth
This beautiful, informative survey of the habitats, wildlife and protected areas of Costa Rica features 200 color photographs and chapters on natural history and conservation.
Nature of the Rainforest, Costa Rica and Beyond
by Adrian Forsyth, E.O. Wilson (Introduction), Michael Fogden (Photographer)
Our favorite biologist-writer returns to the Neotropics in this beautifully illustrated, oversized overview of the rainforest. With chapters on Monteverde and Guanacaste, plants, frogs and snakes, birds, monkeys and jaguars, the sloth, peculiar insects and biodioversity; A marvelous, anecdotal introduction to ecology, evolution and conservation.
Costa Rican Wildlife
by Pocket Naturalist
Put it in your pocket! This handy, fold-up card includes color illustrations of dozens of typical birds, mammals and reptiles. We also carry plastic cards for Costa Rica Birds (Item CRC56) and Costa Rica Butterflies & Moths (Item CRC57), $5.95 each.
Volcanoes, Crucibles of Change
by Richard Fisher
A complete primer for the volcano lover, this heavily illustrated book covers types of volcanoes and eruptions, worldwide distribution and the physics of their formation.
The Ticos
by Richard Biesanz
This insightful, fact-filled portrait of the Costa Rican people details their culture, history and society.
Culture Smart! Costa Rica
by Jane Koutnik
History, religion, daily life, food, health and safety are all covered in this accessible pocket guide to Costa Rican customs, etiquette and culture.
Costa Rica, A Journey Through Nature
by Adrian Hepworth
Dividing the book by ecosystem and geographic area, BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year Hepworth's color photographs showcase the diversity of Costa Rica's wildlife and habitats.
Costa Rica Adventure Map
by National Geographic
A double-sided map at a scale of 1:500,000.
The Wildlife of Costa Rica, A Field Guide
by Twan Leenders, Robert Dean, Jim Zook, Fiona Reid
This guide includes 450 of the most common, interesting and charismatic mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and arthropods that you are likely to encounter. Each has exquisite full-color illustrations.
Costa Rica Reader: History, Culture, Politics
by Steven Palmer (Editor), Ivan Molina (Editor)
A lively, literate sourcebook on the politics, economy and society of Costa Rica
Monkeys Are Made Of Chocolate: Exotic And Unseen Costa Rica
by Jack Ewing
When Jack Ewing moved his family to Costa Rica in 1970 and purchased a hacienda, he saw himself becoming a cattle rancher. He could never have anticipated that one day he would devote himself to reforesting the very land he had worked so hard to clear for farming. Hacienda Barú is now a popular nature wildlife refuge and a success story for proponents of biological corridors. Ewing's storytelling talents lend themselves well to this collection of essays on nature, biodiversity and cultural traditions in rural Costa Rica.
Costa Rican Spanish
by Lonely Planet
A pocket guide to understanding idioms, slang and Spanish as it is spoken by the Ticos.
A Brief History of Central America
by Hector Perez-Brignoll
A good overview of the region’s economic, political and social history through the 1980s by a professor at the University of Costa Rica. Well-written, informative and concise.
Costa Rica Butterflies & Moths
by James Kavanagh
A handy, laminated fold-up card with color illustrations of Costa Rica’s more visible species of butterflies and moths. Includes the distinguishing markings or behaviors of each species.
The Green Republic: A Conservation History of Costa Rica
by Sterling Evans
For the serious reader, this book offers a vivid synopsis of the founding and expansion of Costa Rica’s National Park system, including portraits of the local heroes and institutions that fought for conservation.
Tropical Nature
by Adrian Forsyth, Ken Miyata
Two uncommonly observant and thoughtful field biologists offer a lucid portrait of the tropics through 17 marvelous essays that introduce the habitats, ecology, plants and animals of the Central and South American rainforests.
The Birds of Costa Rica
by Richard Garrigues, Robert Dean (Illustrator)
This new edition covers 903 species of birds with hundreds of new, supplemental or revised color illustrations by Robert Dean and revised color-coded range maps.
Costa Rica, A Traveler's Literary Companion
by Barbara Ras
These 26 well-chosen stories by Costa Rican writers introduce the people, culture and land.
The Monkey's Bridge, Mysteries of Evolution in Central America
by David Rains Wallace
Opening this absorbing account of the history and biogeography of the Central American isthmus with the tale of Columbus, Wallace often weaves his own travels in the region with a crisp overview of exploration, nature and evolution. Natural history buffs and ecologically minded travelers will appreciate this valuable resource.
Neotropical Rainforest Mammals, A Field Guide
by L.H. Emmons
Compact enough to slip into your daypack, this field guide to the mammals of Central and South American features 29 color plates of more than 200 species.
National Geographic Costa Rica
by Christopher P. Baker
This stylish and informative travel resource features 200 photographs, many maps and good information on the country's history, nature and culture.





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