Day 1: Welcome to Costa Rica (D)
Upon arrival you will be picked up by your English-speaking tour guide and taken to your hotel Bougainvillea. The hotel is located outside the center of San José in a tranquil neighborhood. The hotel offers comfortable rooms, a nice pool, great service and the hotel is surrounded by beautiful gardens with a lot of different tropical plants and flowers!
Day 2: Volcano Poás & Doka Coffee plantation (BLD)
Early in the morning you will be picked up by your private guide at your hotel in San José and then you will drive to the province of Alajuela and to the territory of the world famous Costa Rican highland coffee. Our first stop will be to the 2,708m high Poas volcano, which offers excellent views of the unique landscape. The road up to the summit leads past coffee & fern plantations and strawberry fields. The guide sometimes even finds a sloth that is well camouflaged hiding in the treetops. From the parking lot it takes you about a 20-minutes on well-maintained paths to hike to the 300-meter-deep crater.
From the main crater area, we then hike through the cloud forest to Laguna Botos. This is an extinct crater, surrounded by dense vegetation, that has filled over time with rain water.
After the volcano tour we continue to the famous Doka coffee plantation. There you will have a typical lunch – a Casado. On the drive back to San Jose, we’ll visit a beautifully landscaped butterfly garden.
Day 3: San Jose – Boca Tapada/ Rio San Carlos (BD)
After breakfast we leave San Jose for Maquenque Eco Lodge. The Eco Lodge is a new 60 hectare reserve located just north of Boca Tapada, San Carlos and offers easy access to the newly created Maquenque National Wildlife Refuge, which is 230 square miles in size. A local family created the ecolodge to maintain and conserve wildlife habitat, while providing visitors with high quality accommodations and service in a unique framework, creating an unforgettable rainforest experience or rain forest vacation in this privileged region, still off the beaten path.
The Lodge is located inside the Maquenque Eco Preserve in the Northern Territory of San Carlos, specifically in Boca Tapada. Surrounded by tropical rain forests, and bordering the Majestic San Carlos River, it has become famous for being a unique region for ecology, wildlife observation, unique birding and adventure tours. In the afternoon you can head out to take first impressive pictures of the amazing nature surrounding Maquenque Lodge.
Day 4: Boca Tapada – Boat Trip on River San Carlos (BD)
Today we will be on a boat on the San Carlos River. You will observe native wildlife such as birds, crocodiles, turtles, bats and more. You will spend some time at the village of Boca San Carlos, which is on the border with Nicaragua. There you also get the chance to visit a typical local family, to obtain an impression of their life.
Days 5/6/7: Boca Tapada – Rancho Naturalista (BLD each day)
Today we leave Maquenque Lodge and drive south to our next destination, Rancho Naturalist, set on the Caribbean slope in the Cordillera Talamanca. The lodge is located 1⁄2 hour southeast of the town of Turrialba and offers stunning views of the Irazu and Turrialba Volcanos. The position of Rancho Naturalista within the Cordillera Talamanca serves as a great magnet to many resident and migratory birds, over 430 species have been recorded from the diverse habitats within the area, including the large area of protected forest within the lodge grounds and surrounding adjacent areas.
Day 8: South Pacific Coast (BD)
Today we will drive to the La Palapa Resort located near Portalon at the South Pacific Coast. The family-run eco-lodge is a little paradise surrounded by beautiful tropical gardens. During your journey you will pass Cerro de la Muerte, the highest point in the Costa Rican section of the Inter-American Highway. You will have the opportunity to photograph the amazing cloud forest, surrounding the Cerro de la Muerte, in all its beauty.
Day 9: Corcovado National Park (BLD)
After an early breakfast we will head to Corcovado National Park on a day trip, leaving Uvita on a boat transit. During the ride you may observe whales, dolphins, turtles, marine birds and fantastic views of the southern Pacific coastline. Corcovado National Park is the largest stronghold of primary forest on a Pacific coastline, and is famous for being “the most biologically intense place on earth.” After arriving at San Pedrillo Ranger Station in the Corcovado National Park two guided nature tour hikes along two different trails will be on available, to observe and record images of the beautiful flora and fauna found in the area. Each hike takes around 2 hours, though photographers may, of course, spend more time exploring particularly interesting subjects. During the hikes we will have the chance to see many mammals, including spider, howler, and white-faced monkeys, sloths, coatis, raccoons, and tapirs as well as a great variety of birds, plants, and old-growth trees. In late afternoon we return to our hotel for a well-earned dinner.
Day 10: Marino Ballena National Park (BD)
Today you will visit the Marino Ballena National Park, which is comprised of golden sandy beaches, islands and coral reefs. The most prominent land formation within the park is the Punta Uvita Whale Tail, a sand bar that extends one kilometer into the Pacific Ocean. During low tide you can enjoy a walk out on the Punta Uvita Whale Trail. In the afternoon you will have time to do some great sunset photography.
Day 11: Uvita – San José (BD)
After breakfast you will leave Uvita and go back to San José. Your dinner will be enjoyed in the hotel Bougainvillea.
Day 12: San José – Departure (B)
Individual transfers are provided to the international airport of San José.
MACRO PHOTOGRAPHY 4 DAY “ADD-ON”
Price: $1,950 all inclusive (single supplement $500)
Maybe 12 days was not enough for you? You can add 4 more days in the jungle fully focused on Macro photography.
NOTE: you can sign up for this add on even if you did not attend the main tour.
- Discovery Workshop Costa Rica 12 days / 11 nights
- April 2018 (exact dates to be announced) | Price: $4,500 all inclusive (single supplement $750)
- San José – Vulcano Poas & Doka Coffee Farm – Rio San Carlos/ Boca Tapada – Rancho – Naturalista / Turrialba Vulcano – Central & South Pacific Region – San José