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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Turquoise-browed Motmot
Turquoise-browed Motmot

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Stripe-headed Sparrow, Costa Rica by Pac
Stripe-headed Sparrow, Costa Rica by Pac

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Jabiru on nest, Costa Rica by Paco Madri
Jabiru on nest, Costa Rica by Paco Madri

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Turquoise-browed Motmot
Turquoise-browed Motmot

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White-fronted Nunbird
White-fronted Nunbird

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White -throated Crake
White -throated Crake

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Spotted Antbird (Arenal) (2)
Spotted Antbird (Arenal) (2)

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White-fronted Nunbird
White-fronted Nunbird

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Shining Honeycreeper
Shining Honeycreeper

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Central A. Pygmy Owl (13)
Central A. Pygmy Owl (13)

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DSCN4739
DSCN4739

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Shining Honeycreeper
Shining Honeycreeper

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tortuguero9
tortuguero9

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tortuguero8

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tortuguero5

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Arenal -Golden-hooded Tanager (002).jpg
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Central A. Pygmy Owl (13).JPG

QUOTE: Potharlanka

Private Photography Tour 2022

Dates: Tentative (October/November 2022)

Guide: Tentative

Number of participants: 3 (1 double & 1 single room)

Discounted Rate (for payment by check or bank transfer)

Price per person (based 3 participants in double occupancy): $4,890

Single Supplement: $650

 

Regular Price (payments by credit card)

Price per person (based 3 participants in double occupancy): $5,110​

Single Supplement: $679

Tour includes: 

  • 11 nights of lodging

  • Meals starting with Breakfast on Day 2 and ending with breakfast on Day 12

  • Full time Bilingual English-Spanish speaking guide, specializing in birds and natural history starting on Day 2 until drop-off at the hotel on Day 12

  • 1 meet & greet and airport transfer (on arrival day)

  • Full time ground transportation in a spacious air-conditioned vehicle Day 2-12

  • 1 private airport transfer on Day 1 & Day 12 with your guide

  • 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 guideline to pass along to guests).

  • Owling excursions will be available throughout the tour, weather permitting and where productive based on discretion of the guide.

 

Tours and Entrances included:

  • 1 visit to Paraiso Quetzal hummingbird gardens + use of the hummingbird photography deck

  • Access to Oak Forest Reserve

  • 1/2 day visit at Batzu Gardens

  • 1 visit to Bogarin Gardens

  • 2 half day sessions using the photo decks while at Laguna del Lagarto

  • 1 bat hide photography while at Laguna del Lagarto

  • 1 King Vulture hide photography while at Laguna del Lagarto

  • 1 visit to Adolfo's Garden while at Laguna del Lagarto

  • 1 Macro frog photography while at Laguna del Lagarto

  • 1 San Carlos Boat Ride at Laguna del Lagarto

  • 1 full day at La Selva Biological Station

  • 1 visit to Cinchona Hummingbird gardens

  • 1 visit to Cope's OR Pierella Gardens

  • 1 visit to Frog Heaven

Abbreviated Itinerary:

Day 1 - Hotel Bougainvillea (Garden View)

Day 2, 3- Savegre Lodge (Jr. Suite)

Day 4, 5, 6 - Selva Verde Lodge (Sarapiqui)

May 7, 8, 9 - Laguna del Lagarto Lodge (Standard)

Day 10, 11 - Arenal Observatory Lodge (Smithsonian)

Day 12 - Departures (late afternoon flights)

Detailed Itinerary:

*Each morning you will get an early start to make the best use of time while maintaining a comfortable pace. As an optional outing, one night in each location, you can 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. Some meal times will be limited to the restaurant meal schedule, and some lunches will be en route. Meals are pre-paid.

 

Day 1- Hotel Bougainvillea (Garden View Room)

Arrive in San Jose where you will be warmly welcomed by your guide and escorted back to your hotel. Paco will have a brief orientation meeting with you to give you details about the trip and the Day 2 schedule. Spend the afternoon 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, Rufous-capped Warbler and Hoffman’s Woodpecker. 

(No meals included this day)

Day 2 - Savegre Lodge (Jr. Suite Room) 

After breakfast, travel to Cerro de la Muerte. You will be making a stop to explore the misty highland cloud forest reserve at the Paraiso Quetzal. Upon arrival at Paraiso Quetzal you will have time to stroll through the hummingbird gardens before an early lunch. You have use of the photography deck from 12:30pm - 3:30pm. The area is home to Resplendent Quetzal as well as fiery-throated hummingbird, Black-and-yellow Silky- flycatcher, Large-footed Finch, Black-billed Nightingale-Thrush, Sooty Robin, Sooty-capped Bush-Tanager, Peg-billed Finch to name a few. Before returning to the lodge for dinner, you will have the opportunity to visit the Paramo habitat at approximately 3500m above sea level in search of the Volcano Junco. Overnight in San Gerardo de Dota, nestled in a quaint highland valley nearby.

(B at Hotel Bougainvillea, L at Paraiso Quetzal, D at Savegre Lodge)

Day 3 - Savegre Lodge (Jr. Suite Room) 

Today after breakfast, you will travel to Batzú Gardens located in San Gerardo de Dota. Batsú means “small bird” (usually referring to a hummingbird) in the indigenous language Bri-Bri. This location offers beautiful views, backgrounds and species of birds. You will spend the morning here before returning to Savegre Lodge for lunch. Spend the afternoon exploring the gardens, riparian highland habitats, and old growth tropical oak cloud forests surrounding the lodge. Walking through the gardens and along the Savegre River, we can hope to see Flame-colored Tanager, Collared Trogon, Torrent Tyrannulet, Volcano hummingbird, and Gray-tailed Mountain-Gem, among many others. Some of the other species we will be looking for include Black-faced Solitaire, Spotted Wood-Quail, Buffy Tuftedcheek, Golden-browed Chlorophonia, Ochraceous Wren, Ornate Hawk-Eagle, and of course the Resplendent Quetzal. In the evening after a delicious dinner, we will go over the birds, and any other wildlife seen that day.

(B, L, & D at Savegre Lodge)

Day 4 - Selva Verde Lodge (Sarapiqui River Room) 

Travel to the tropical lowlands of Sarapiqui. Spend the afternoon exploring the wildlife-rich riparian zone along the banks of the Sarapiqui River. This rain forest region at the base of the Caribbean slope is well known for hosting the greatest diversity of tropical flora and fauna. Here the Sunbittern, Black-faced Grosbeak,and Gray-necked Wood-Rail are a few of the inhabitants of the area. This is the most likely spot on the trip to see the Great Green Macaw, an endangered species that depends on the Dipteryx tree for feeding and nesting. This is one of the emergent trees commonly found in Sarapiqui. Also lurking in the forest are two- and three-toed sloths, 3 different species of monkeys, and peccaries. 

(B at Savegre Lodge, L en route & D at Selva Verde Lodge)

 

Day 5 - Selva Verde Lodge (Sarapiqui River Room) 

Spend the full day at La Selva Biological Station run by the Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS), clearly a highlight of the tour. The station is among the four most famous tropical research facilities in the world. We will see an outstanding abundance of wildlife. The station is home to more than 420 bird species, more than 500 species of butterflies, 55 species of snakes, and 120 species of mammals. A vast variety of different species of trees can be seen in the arboretum. This is the most likely place to make your Tinamou dream come true. There are three species of Tinamou that inhabit La Selva. We will be looking for Rufous Motmot, Trogons, Caciques, Purple-throated Fruitcrow, and Snowy Cotinga, among many others. Animals here are not camera shy, so there will be ample photo opportunities. Peccaries (wild pig), agoutis, coatis, sloth, and monkeys frequent this area. All of which makes for unforgettable days. 

(B, L & D at Selva Verde Lodge)

 

Day 6 - Selva Verde Lodge (Sarapiqui River Room) 

Today you will be visiting Cope’s Gardens and Frog Heaven for some amazing wildlife. Cope’s Gardens is located in Guapiles. This is a fantastic garden with fruit and hummingbird feeders that attract a wide variety of bird species. It is also possible to see species of bats, frogs, and reptiles on the property. Frog Heaven is located in Horquetas and is a family project that was created to reproduce native frogs and contribute to nature conservation. This is a fantastic location to photograph a variety of beautiful frog species native to Costa Rica. Some of the species include: Strawberry Blue Jean Dart Frog, Ghost Glass Frog, Red-eyed Tree Frog, and many more. Return to the lodge for lunch and a relaxing afternoon. Paco will offer an optional afternoon outing around the lodge.

(B at Selva Verde, L en route (or boxed) & D at Selva Verde Lodge)

Day 7 - Laguna del Lagarto Eco- Lodge (Standard Room) 

After breakfast, travel to Laguna del Lagarto Eco-Lodge. You will stop at Cinchona along the route with lunch en route Today you will have access the Bat Hide (Estimated time: 5pm). (Please note that the daily activity schedule may change due to weather or group reservations. Exact times of activities will be announced upon check-in)

(B at Selva Verde, L en route & D at Laguna del Lagarto)

 

Day 8 - Laguna del Lagarto Eco-Lodge (Standard Room) 

In the morning, you will have access to the  photography deck (estimated times: 6am-9am) and King Vulture Hide afterwards (estimated time: 9am). In the afternoon you will be making a trip out to the beautiful Adolfo’s Gardens (estimated times: 2pm-5pm). Here you will take part in the Macro Frog photography. (Please note that the daily activity schedule may change due to weather or group reservations. Exact times of activities will be announced upon check-in)

(B, L & D at Laguna del Lagarto)

Day 9 - Laguna del Lagarto Eco-Lodge (Standard Room) 

In the morning, you will have access to the  photography deck (estimated times: 6am-9am). After lunch you will enjoy an afternoon boat ride on the San Carlos river. 

(B, L & D at Laguna del Lagarto)

Day 10 - Arenal Observatory Lodge (Smithsonian Room) 

Travel to the Arenal/La Fortuna  area, 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 great 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.

(B at Laguna del Lagarto, L & D at Arenal Observatory Lodge)

 

Day 11 - Arenal Observatory Lodge (Smithsonian Room) 

Today you will visit the Bogarin Trails to see and photograph some beautiful wildlife. This is a great opportunity to see sloths in their natural habitat as well as lizards, frogs, and of course birds. You will arrive back to the lodge for lunch. Enjoy the afternoon on the lodge grounds.

(B, L, D at Arenal Observatory Lodge)

Day 12 - Departures

Today your guide will transfer you directly to the Juan Santamaria International Airport.

IT IS VERY IMPORTANT THAT YOU HAVE LATE AFTERNOON FLIGHTS.

(Only breakfast included at Arenal Observatory Lodge)

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

  • A non-refundable* deposit of $650 is due upon booking (if the minimum number of participants is not met to run the tour, and the tour is cancelled, this non-refundable deposit will be returned)

  • No refund for any unused entrances or tours

  • 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/es/costa-rica/planning-your-trip/entry-requirements

  • In case of a travel emergency within Costa Rica, Cotinga Tours will keep communication 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.