The drive from San José to Sarapiquí in the Caribbean lowlands is about 55 miles, approximately 3 hours; elevation in Sarapiquí is approximately 220 feet. Lodge check in from 3:00 p.m. Walking up to several miles; birding trails in primary and secondary rainforest, undulating terrain, hot/humid conditions.
At the hotel, plated meal with juice, coffee, tea, water.
At the hotel, we will have a presentation by a local expert introducing tropical birding. We will then check out of the hotel, board our bus, and transfer via Varablanca to the Sarapiquí. Situated in the Caribbean lowlands, 40 miles from San José, Sarapiquí is one of the richest sites for birds in Middle America with well over 400 species recorded. Nearby, the La Selva Protection Zone and the Braulio Carrillo National Park form the only significant corridor of forest on the Caribbean slope linking the highlands with the lowlands — a corridor crucial to birds and animals that undertake seasonal altitudinal migrations. Along the way, enjoy a visit to La Paz Waterfall Gardens to view their hummingbird garden, do some birding from paved paths and admire scenic waterfalls. La Paz Waterfall Gardens is an ecological park located near the Poás Volcano, in a verdant, misty area where cloud and rain forests meet, the park has five beautiful waterfalls that can be admired from various viewpoints through a network of stairways and viewing platforms. The site also features a variety of gardens and walking trails from which visitors can view many species of birds. At the hummingbird garden it is possible to see as many as 26 different hummingbird species from around Costa Rica. Observe these colorful birds up close while they buzz among the tropical plants and feeders.
At La Paz Waterfall Gardens. Buffet lunch, plus juice, coffee and water.
Participate in a short walk around La Paz Waterfall Gardens to one of the waterfalls on site. Depart to continue journey to Sarapiqui, arriving in the afternoon. Check in and orientation to the lodge and the grounds. Short (about an hour) birding field trip walking on the lodge’s property. We look forward to opportunities to spot toucans, woodpeckers, parrots, trogons, and perhaps even the endangered Great Green Macaw.
In the lodge restaurant, enjoy a 2-course meal plus coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase. As the sun begins to set, it casts a golden glow over the river and surrounding trees.
We’ll walk around the lodge grounds with our Group Leader to look for nocturnal species. After sunset, the rainforest comes alive with the calls of its nocturnal inhabitants. Listen to the sounds and try to distinguish one from another as you relax on the verandah. Frogs, owls, bats, tepezquintles (pacas), moths, and various other creatures come out just as most of us are getting ready for bed.