Resplendent Quetzal
Resplendent Quetzal

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Red-headed Barbet
Red-headed Barbet

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Golden-browed Chlorophonia, Costa Rica b
Golden-browed Chlorophonia, Costa Rica b

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Resplendent Quetzal
Resplendent Quetzal

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Grey-headed Tanager (003)
Grey-headed Tanager (003)

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Scarlet Macaw, Costa Rica
Scarlet Macaw, Costa Rica

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Fiery-billed Aracari, Costa Rica by Paco
Fiery-billed Aracari, Costa Rica by Paco

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Grey-headed Tanager (003)
Grey-headed Tanager (003)

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Pale-billed Woodpecker, Costa Rica by Pa
Pale-billed Woodpecker, Costa Rica by Pa

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Royal Flycatcher, Costa Rica by Keith Of
Royal Flycatcher, Costa Rica by Keith Of

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Pale-billed Woodpecker, Costa Rica by Pa
Pale-billed Woodpecker, Costa Rica by Pa

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Gray-necked Wood-Rail, Costa Rica by Pac
Gray-necked Wood-Rail, Costa Rica by Pac

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Spectacled Owl, Costa Rica by Paco Madri
Spectacled Owl, Costa Rica by Paco Madri

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Gray-necked Wood-Rail, Costa Rica by Pac
Gray-necked Wood-Rail, Costa Rica by Pac

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Scarlet Tanager, Costa Rica by Paco Madr
Scarlet Tanager, Costa Rica by Paco Madr

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Whte-fronted Parrot, Costa Rica by Paco
Whte-fronted Parrot, Costa Rica by Paco

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Scarlet Tanager, Costa Rica by Paco Madr
Scarlet Tanager, Costa Rica by Paco Madr

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White-Faced Capuchin (002)
White-Faced Capuchin (002)

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Whte-fronted Parrot, Costa Rica by Paco
Whte-fronted Parrot, Costa Rica by Paco

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Manuel 005
Manuel 005

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White-Faced Capuchin (002)
White-Faced Capuchin (002)

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Fiery-throated hummingbird.JPG

QUOTE PRIVATE TOUR - December 2022

Designed for: Dean LaTray & Persis Karim

Guide: Erick Guzman

December 9 - 24, 2022

Discounted price per person based on 2 participants in double occupancy: $6,976

*applied when client pays by check or bank wire*

Regular price per person based on 2 participants in double occupancy: $7,290

*applied when client pays by credit or debit card*

Tour includes: 

  • 15 nights of lodging

  • Meals starting with Breakfast on Day 2, ending with breakfast on Day 16 

  • All tours and entrances listed above, taxes (airport taxes and tips to local staff, guide and driver not included)

  • Tipping is customary and merit based in Costa Rica. (See below for tipping guidelines to pass along to guests)

  • Meet and greet with your guide on Day 1

  • Full time Bi-lingual English-Spanish speaking guide that serves as the driver as well, specializing in birds and natural history starting on Day 2 until Day 16 (Day 16 includes the airport transfer to SJO)

  • Full time ground transportation in a rental vehicle (Hyundai Tucson or similar large SUV) in a spacious air-conditioned and 4X4 vehicle from Day 2 until Day 16

  • Private ground transfer from SJO Airport to Hotel Bougainvillea on Day 1

  • Physical Birding Checklist

 

Tours and Entrances included:

  • 2 entrances to Carara National Park

  • 1 private Tarcoles River Boat Tour

  • 1 entrance to Pierella Ecological Gardens

  • 1 entrance to Bogarin Trails

  • Access to the 10-acre garden at Bougainvillea

  • Access to the trails and private reserve at Rancho Naturalista

  • Access to the trails and private reserve at Bosque de Paz

________________________________________________________

 

Abbreviated Itinerary:

Day 1 - Dec 9 - Hotel Bougainvillea (Mountain View)

Day 2, 3, 4, 5 - Dec 10, 11, 12, 13 - Rancho Naturalista (#13 Tinamou)

Day 6, 7, 8 - Dec 14, 15, 16 - Bosque de Paz (Standard) 

Day 9, 10, 11 - Dec 17, 18, 19 - Arenal Observatory (Standard) 

Day 12, 13, 14, 15 - Dec 20, 21, 22, 23 - Villa Lapas (Standard)

Day 16 - Dec 24 - Departure to SJO

______________________________________________________________________

 

DETAILED ITINERARY

*Each morning we will be getting an early start to make the best of our time, and maximize our opportunities to see the most species of birds possible while maintaining a comfortable pace. As an optional outing, one night in each location, we will go owling (weather permitting and if the guide determines the outing to be productive). Each evening there will also be an optional meeting before or after dinner to go over the bird/wildlife checklist for that day.

 

*Please note that exact meal and outing times will be announced by the guide as the tour goes along. This is to allow for flexibility in the itinerary to be able to best take advantage of time in the field and so the logistics run smoothly for the group as a whole.

Meal Key: B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner

Day 1 - December 9th: Hotel Bougainvillea (Mountain View Room)

Arrive in San Jose where you will be warmly welcomed by your guide Erick and escorted back to your hotel. You will have a brief orientation meeting to go over important trip details. Spend the evening relaxing by the poolside or taking a walk in the lovely gardens to recuperate from your long day of travel. This is a good place to see the White-eared Ground-sparrow, the Blue-crowned Motmot, some colorful hummingbirds, and maybe even the Prevost’s Ground-sparrow.

(No Meals Included - Cold Dinner Order has been made and will be paid by the clients out of pocket)

Day 2 - December 10th: Rancho Naturalista (Tinamou Room)

After breakfast Erick will meet you at the hotel and you will begin your journey to Turrialba in the Province of Cartago. Rancho Naturalista and the local area is  home to over 450 species of birds. Many of these birds, including the beautiful hummingbirds can be see right outside your room. After a delicious lunch made with fresh, local ingredients, you will explore the ground of the private reserve with your guide. Afternoon area birding around the lodge will sure be a great way to spend your wonderful birding get-a-way.

(B at Hotel Bougainvillea, L & D at Rancho Naturalista)

Day 3, 4, & 5 - December 11th 12th, & 13th: Rancho Naturalista (Tinamou Room)

Spend the next three full days birding with your guide in the private reserve on site as well as local area birding. This location is nestled in a Caribbean with distant views of the Turrialba Volcano. You will have the opportunity to see species in advance secondary and primary forests as well are fruit orchards. On the lodge ground you can spot Lesson’s Motmots, Montezuma, and Chestnut-headed Oropendolas, Grey-headed Chachalacas, Baltimore Orioles, several kinds of euphonias, flycatchers, and tanagers. Many hummingbirds call the gardens their home including the Violet-crowned Woodnymph, White-necked Jacobin, Green Hermit, Green Thorntail, Violet Sabrewing, Bronze-tailed Plumeleteer, and Green-crowned Brilliant. There are specialty species that we hope you are lucky enough to see such as the Snowcap and Black-Crested Coquette. Other fantastic species in the area are the Lovely Cotinga, Thicket Antpitta, Dull-Mantled Antbird...and the list goes on!

(All meals at Rancho Naturalista)

 

Day 6 - December 14th: Bosque de Paz Lodge (Standard Room)

After breakfast, travel northwest towards Valle de Rio Toro in the Province of Alajuela. You will make a stop on the way at Pierella Ecological Gardens with another stop at a local, typical restaurant to enjoy lunch. After lunch and the visit to the gardens, you will arrive to the Bosque de Paz Biological Reserve where you will spend the next three nights. Enjoy some afternoon birding around the lodge with your guide before dinner. 

(B at Rancho Naturalista, L en route, D at Bosque de Paz)

 

Day 7 & 8 - December 15th & 16th: Bosque de Paz Lodge (Standard Room)

Spend the next two days exploring the Bosque de Paz Biological Reserve with your guide. There are over 300 species that you can observe just in the reserve alone. These include multiple species of flycatchers, kingbirds, herons and raptors. Among those species you can see the Great Curassow, Spotted Wood-Quail, Blue-headed Parrot, Crested Owl and many more!

(All meals at Bosque de Paz)

 

Day 9, 10, 11 - December 17th, 18th , 19th: Arenal Observatory (Standard Room)

In the morning after breakfast, travel further west into La Fortuna. Spend three nights at the Arenal Observatory Lodge, which offers breathtaking views of the jungle-covered Arenal Volcano. This is a birding and wildlife hotspot, and the stunning natural beauty will astound you. The extensive trails at the lodge allow for tremendous opportunities to view the Crimson-collared Tanagers, White Hawk, Brown- hooded Parrot, and the Golden-olive Woodpecker, along with an array of colorful hummingbirds, and three species of Toucans. One night, we will go owling in search of the Black-and-White Owl and Mottled Owl, in the hotel grounds.

(Dec 17th - B at Bosque de Paz, L & D at Arenal Observatory Lodge)

(Dec 18th & 19th - All meals at Arenal Observatory Lodge)

 

Day 12 - December 20th: Hotel Villa Lapas (Standard Room)

Travel to the Central Pacific lowlands where your lodge is situated at the edge of the Carara Biological Reserve on the banks of the Tarcoles River near the Pacific coast. In the afternoon, we will explore the bird-rich trails through the forest, and hope to see Scarlet Macaws and Tiger Herons, among many others.

(B at Arenal Observatory Lodge, L en route & D at Hotel Villa Lapas)

 

Day 13, 14, 15 - December 21st, 22nd, 23rd: Hotel Villa Lapas (Standard Room)

Spend the next two days exploring the Carara National Park, a unique climatological zone where the ecosystem of the humid southern coastal region joins the dry climate of the northern Pacific area, becoming a rich meeting ground for species from both regions. This is truly one of the highlights of the tour, where we hope to find the Orange Collared Manakin dancing in their lek. This is a great location to spot antbirds, up to five different species of Trogons, Rufous-tailed Jacamar, and even Royal Flycatchers. We will also take time to visit Playa Azul where some of the species we will look for are Gray-necked Wood-Rail, Yellow- crowned Night-Heron, Red-crowned Woodpecker, Melodious Blackbird, Bare-throated Tiger- Heron, , Spectacled Owl, and many species of shorebirds.

 

While in the area, one afternoon you will enjoy a two-hour mangrove tour by boat along the Tarcoles River with a local guide. During the tour we will not only be impressed by the giant crocodiles that inhabit the area but also the variety of shorebirds, water birds, and raptors.

(All meals at Hotel Villa Lapas)

 

Day 16 - December 24th: Departures

Today after breakfast, you will make the journey back to San Jose.  You guide will drop you off at the Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) for check-in 3 hours before your flight's departure.

(B at Hotel Villa Lapas only)

 

Important Notes & Conditions:

 

  • Meals are pre-arranged and prepaid so if the group wishes to make changes to the schedule that result in missing a pre-arranged meal, there will be no refund for the missed meal and guests will assume the additional cost of the missed meal elsewhere for themselves, the guide and driver.

  • We encourage guests to bring reusable water bottle and refill water bottles at filtered water dispensers in lodges and on the bus to reduce our use of plastic

  • Any additional airport transfers that are not on the arrival or departure date for this tour have an additional charge of $50 per transfer

  • Airport exit taxes are not included and are approximately $30 per person (Most airlines are including them now, so please check with your airline for details.)

  • International airfare not included

  • Cotinga Tours will not cover any additional costs that could result from flight changes such as schedule changes, flight cancellations, airstrip closures, flight rerouting or other situations that are out of our hands, including extra costs in transfers, lodging, or costs due to missed/rerouted flights that may result from these changes.  All additional costs due to flight related changes will be covered by the client

  • No refund for any unused entrances or tours

  • A non-refundable booking deposit of $650 is due upon booking.

  • Tips to guides and hotel staff not included Guidelines are available upon request

  • Alcoholic beverages and costs of a personal nature are not included

  • We highly recommend purchasing comprehensive travel insurance that covers trip
    cancellation, trip interruption, and loss or damage to optics and equipment, in order to protect your investment.

  • Cancellations and respective refunds are according to the following schedule (all cancellations must be received in writing):

    • Cancellations received before 90 days prior to the arrival date, the client receives a full refund less the non-refundable deposit.

    • Cancellations received between 90 and 75 days prior to the arrival date, the client receives a 50% refund of the total less the non-refundable deposit.

    • Cancellations received between 74 and 66 days prior to arrival date, the client receives a 25% refund of the total less the non-refundable deposit.

    • Cancellations received at 65 days or less prior to the arrival date, there will be no refund available.

COVID-19 Detailed Policies and Country Requirements​​

  • Medical costs and any extra costs associated with a medical issue (lodging, transportation, meals, etc) are the responsibility of the client. Cotinga Tours will not be responsible for any costs incurred. Cotinga Tours will assist clients in finding alternative accommodations if client(s) are denied entrance into a hotel in their itinerary due to illness.

  • If a COVID-19 test is necessary while in Costa Rica, extra costs incurred--transportation, medical costs, test cost (approximately $100), alternative lodging and meals will be covered by the client.

  • The above COVID-19 related travel requirements could change at any time please refer to this website for updates:https://www.visitcostarica.com/en/costa-rica/planning-your-trip/entry-requirements

  • In case of a travel emergency within Costa Rica, Cotinga Tours will keep communication with the clients. In terms of a travel emergency that affects travel to or from the country of origin, it will be the responsibility of HeatherLea to communicate with the clients.

  • Traveling during the COVID pandemic does come with risks. Cotinga Tours as well as the hotel properties, tour operators, and restaurants follows the sanitary policies enforced by the Costa Rican Ministerio de Salud.

  • Cotinga Tours is NOT responsible for the following:

    • The traveler's compliance or the consequences of non-compliance with United States or Costa Rica COVID-19 policies.

    • Costs associated with the required COVID-19 tests.*

    • Any delays in receiving the COVID-19 test results and any costs incurred due to delayed test results.

    • If the traveler tests positive for COVID-19.

    • Any costs incurred if there is delay in departure from Costa Rica.

    • Travel restrictions and entry policies for the United States of America can change without notice. It is the responsibility of the client to stay informed the weeks and days before and during their trip to make sure they comply with the most current United States policies. Here is a helpful link to the United States Embassy guidelines: https://cr.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/