Join Freddy Madrigal, wildlife photographer and natural history expert with 33 years’ experience leading birding, photography, and nature expeditions in his homeland of Costa Rica and in Central and South America. Travel with Freddy to secret spots away from the crowd for a more relaxing and quality experience.
Explore through the eyes of a wildlife photographer and natural history expert our national parks’ natural beauties with their enormous variety of wildlife. Adventure into birding, nature photography, macro photo sessions, bird photo workshops and bird photo set ups. See why Costa Rica is believed to possess the highest density of biodiversity of any country worldwide. While encompassing just 0.03% of Earth's landmass - approximately the size of West Virginia - Costa Rica contains 5% of all the species estimated to exist on the planet. Our journey will take us to 2 different mountain ranges in Costa Rica – the Talamanca and Central Volcanic ranges - and 8 different life zones - Paramo, Oak Forest, Cloud Forest, Rain Forest, humid forest, Pre-mountain forest, mangrove forest and wetlands.
Meet and greet at international airport. Overland to Laguna del Lagarto Lodge. Overnight at Laguna del Lagarto Lodge, meals included, Dinner included.
DAY 2. Full day at Laguna Lagarto Lodge. Overnight at Laguna Lagarto Lodge, meals included Breakfast & Dinner.
Today we will have an early start, great photo opportunities for today during full day at Laguna del Lagarto Lodge and nearby great photo opportunities.
(__NOOO___Arrival to Costa Rica. Meet and greet at the international airport SJO. Suggested arrival to Costa Rica, before noon__NOOOO__.)
5:30 am, Sunrise and birds start showing up at platform shooting station.
7:00 am, breakfast is served, then continue shooting, for Toucans, Parrots, Tanagers, Honeycreepers…
8:30 am, King Vulture Hide for 2 hours, for those who would like to take the opportunity to photograph such an astounding bird, chances of Crested Caracara as well. Not included in price.
10.30 am. Back to hotel shooting station for the rest of the morning.
12:00 noon. Lunch, not included. 1:00 – 5:00 pm. Adolfo`s shooting station, tanagers, Hummingbirds set ups, Parakeets, Honeycreepers and much more, included in price.
6:30 pm. Dinner is served, included.
The Laguna del Lagarto Eco-Lodge in Northern Costa Rica offers you 1250 Acres (500 Hectares) of virgin tropical rainforest with an incredible variety of fauna and flora.
350 different species of birds have been counted, among them the Great Green Macaw.
The Lodge is operated in harmony with nature, under ecological guidelines. A perfect place for passionate birdwatchers and rain forest lovers. More than 10 km of well-marked rainforest trails make birding and exploring nature easy, no matter whether you prefer to explore nature and wildlife on your own or with a naturalist or birding guide.
Home of the Scarlet Macaw, Great Green Macaw, Brown Hooded Parrot, Great Curassow, Keel Billed & Yellow Throated Toucan, Collared Aracari, King Vulture, Rufous Motmot, Red Capped Manakin, Red Legged and Shinning Honeycreepers, Chestnut-colored Woodpecker, Golden Hooded Tanager, American Pygmy-Kingfisher, just to name few of the real possibilities.
Overland to Ara Ambigua Lodge or similar. Overnight at Ara Ambigua Lodge. Meals included, Breakfast & Dinner.
More great photo opportunities this morning at Laguna del Lagarto Lodge restaurant platform and gardens.
5:30 am, Sunrise and birds start showing up at platform shooting station.
7:00 am, breakfast is served, then continue shooting, for Toucans, Parrots, Tanagers, Honeycreeper…
9:00 am, Check for Red Capped Manakin if dancing lek is active.
12:00 noon, Lunch, not included.
1:00 pm, Departure time
3:00 pm, Check in at Ara Ambigua Lodge.
3:30 pm. Shooting at hotel´s gardens.
7:00 pm. Dinner inlcuded.
Sarapiqui’s Birding photo station. Overnight at Ara Ambigua Lodge, meals included, Breakfast & Dinner.
Start the day at hotels gardens looking for White-collared Manakin, Rufous-tailed Jacamar, Red Legged Honeycreeper, Shinning Honeycreeper and much more.
7:30 am. Breakfast is served.
8:00 am. Departure time, 30 minutes’ drive to Sarapiqui’s shooting station.
8:30 – 12 noon. Shooting for Yellow-throated Toucan, Keel-billed Toucan, Montezuma and Chestnut-headed Oropendola, Crimson-collared Tanager, Gray-cowled Wood-rail, Orange-billed Sparrow, among many other beautiful species.
12:00 noon, Lunch, not included.
1:00 – 5:00 pm. Shooting at Jose´s feeders and shooting station, possibilities of Owls day perch.
5:30 pm. Estimated arrival to Ara Ambigua lodge.
6:00 – 6:45 pm. Optional Night walk in search for nocturnal creatures including the amazing Red Eyed Tree Frog.
6:45 pm. Dinner, included.
Ara Ambigua Lodge Set in an exuberant rain forest, the lodge is surrounded by an ecological paradise with tropical gardens, where local species are show cased. Great place to find and photo the amazing Red Eyed Tree frog.
Possible species: Violet Sabrewing, Green hermit, Stripe-throated Hermit, Long-tailed Tyrant, White Collared Manakin, Keel-billed Toucan, Mealy Parrot, Passerines Tanager, Blue-grey Tanager, Buff-throated Saltator, Black-headed Saltator, Gray-headed Chachalaca, Crimson-collared Tanager, Rufous-tailed Jacamar, Great Kiskadee, Social Flycatcher, Gartered Trogon, Slaty-tailed Trogon, Grey-capped Flycatcher.
La Selva Biological Station road – Arte de Pluma Photo-lodge. Overnight at Arte de Pluma, meals included, Breakfast & Dinner.
6:00 am: Early start today as we begin our adventuring to Arte de Pluma Photo Lodge. Starting the day at hotel´s gardens, followed by breakfast. On our way to Arte de Pluma we´ll stop at La Selva Biological Station driveway, surrounded by rainforest from which dozens of beautiful birds and other creatures waiting for our lenses to freeze their beauty in time.
7:15 am. Breakfast time.
7:45 am. Gather our belongings, time to start a new adventure.
8:00 – 10:00 am. As soon as we get to La Selva’s driveway, we start our birding observation and shooting.
12:00 noon, Lunch, stop on the way not included.
1:30 pm. Estimated arrival top Arte de Pluma, after check in lunch waiting for us.
2:30 pm. Remaining of the day shooting at Arte de Pluma photo Stations. Possible species at La Selva´s driveway: Gartered Trogon, Slaty-tailed Trogon, Rufous-tailed Jacamar, Snowy Cotinga, Red-throated Ant-tanager, Gray-headed Chachalaca, Scarlet-rumped Tanager, Black-headed Saltator, Rufous Motmot, Broad-billed Motmot, Pale-billed Woodpecker, Red-throated, Rufous Tailed Jacamar, White-necked Puffbird, Crested Guans, Collared Aracari, Southern Lapwing plus other jewels of the Caribbean lowlands.
6:30 pm. Dinner inlcuded.
Full day at Arte de Pluma Hides, trails & feeders. Overnight at Arte de Pluma Photo Lodge, meals included, Breakfast & Dinner.
Our day: Is the Sunbittern one of your target birds? Today is the day to look for it.
6:00 am: Early walk at hotel grounds, followed by breakfast today as we begin our adventuring to Costa Rican middle elevations species.
7:00 am. Breakfast time.
7:45 am. Our feeders for fruit eating birds, Hummingbird´s and hides inside the forest for species that do not adventure out of it will be waiting for your usage today.
12:00 noon, Lunch, not included.
2:00 pm, Lunch, not included.
6:30 pm: Dinner at hotel, included.
Arte de Plumas lodge, has been designed by photographers for photographers, every detail about light, depth and quality perches has been meticulously chosen to help you get the best possible picture of most birds we have around visiting our photo stations. Hummingbird photo set-ups will be displayed so you can learn how to shoot birds in movement or just look at them. Birds will be so close that you can have Hummingbird wings literally fan your face if you get too warm! Possible Species: Violet Sabrewing, Green Hermit, Green-breasted Mango, Stripped-throated Mango, Keel-billed Toucan, Collared Aracari, Gray-headed Chachalaca, Speckled Tanager, Emerald Tanager, Chestnut-headed and Montezuma Oropendolas, Crimson-collared Tanager, Ringed Kingfisher, Green Kingfisher, Sunbittern, Rufous Motmot and much more middle elevation jewels.
Highlands species at Turrialba volcano, including our famous Resplendent Quetzal. Overnight Arte de Pluma Lodge. meals included, Breakfast & Dinner.
5:00 am: Early departure, as we begin our adventuring to Costa Rican highlands, 3400 meters (10200 ft) above sea level.
6:30 am. Search for one of THE MOST beautiful birds in the world - The Resplendent Quetzal. After “mission accomplished,” it’s back to the hotel for breakfast.
8:30 am. Breakfast will be served family style at the farmhouse, delicious homemade fresh cheese.
9:00 - 12:30 am. Shooting stations for Tanagers, Hummingbirds, Finches and many more beauties of the area.
12:00 noon, Lunch, not included at farm´s cozy restaurant.
1:00 pm. Departure time to CATIE gardens and lagoon.
2:00 pm: Arrival time to CATIE gardens and lagoon shooting area for Egrets, Herons, Kingfishers, Boat Billed Heron and more. Shooting for the remaining of the afternoon.
6:30 pm: Dinner included.
Note: Keep warm clothes handy today because we are heading over 10 thousand feet above sea level. Temperatures in the mornings can drop into the 40’s Fahrenheit and nights are cold as well.
Overland to Savegre Mountains, Overnight at Miriam´s Mountain Lodge. meals included, Breakfast & Dinner.
6:00 am: Free time at hotel grounds, followed by breakfast today as we begin our adventuring to Costa Rican highlands and enhance our possibilities to get more shots of the Resplendent Quetzal.
7:00 am. Breakfast is served.
8:00 am. Check out and departure time. Photo scenic and birds’ opportunities along our drive to Costa Rican lowlands, keep cameras handy.
12:00 noon. Stop at local restaurant on our way for lunch on your own. (not included)
3:00 pm: Estimated arrival time to Miriam`s lodge or similar. Check in and shooting at her feeders for highland species.
6:30 pm: Dinner included.
Note: Keep warm clothes handy today because we are heading up to around 11 thousand feet. Temperatures in the mornings can drop into the 40’s Fahrenheit and nights are cold as well.
Savegre mountains will be both busy and wonderful as we get ready for some highland species including the Magnificent Quetzal, numerous Tanagers and Hummingbirds. Most of these will be new to our list, but, even more exciting, they’ll be so near to us that even cellphones will take great pictures.
Los Quetzales National Park has three life zones (distinct types of forests), 14 ecosystems and tremendous richness of flora and fauna. The Park also encompasses seven different altitude zones which has spawned remarkable biological diversity. We will also observe seasonal lagoons (wetlands) whose origins date to glacial times.
This national park preserves natural conditions of high-altitude woodlands such as oak forests, cloud forests and moorlands. It also helps to maintain the hydrologic functions of these forests and protects the habitats of endemic species. The park shelters the basin of the Savegre River and provides habitat and nesting sites for the beautiful Quetzal.
Possible species sightings in the highlands include: Magnificent Quetzal, Talamanca Hummingbird, Fiery-throated Hummingbird, White-throated Mountain Gem, Scintillant Hummingbird, Volcano Hummingbird, Stripe-tailed Hummingbird, Green Violetear, Brown Violetear, Dusky Nightjar, Collared Trogon, Northern Emerald toucanet, Acorn Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Spot-crowned Woodcreeper, Ruddy Treerunner, Mountain Elaenia, Dark Pewee, Golden Bellied Flycatcher, Black-billed Nightingale-Thrush, Orange-billed Nightingale-Thrush, Sooty Thrush, Black-face Solitaire, Mountain Thrush, American Dipper, Black and Yellow Silky-flycatcher, Long-tailed Silky-flycatcher, Wilson`s Warbler, Slate-throated Redstart, Collared Redstart, Flame-throated Warbler, Spangled-cheeked Tanager, Large-footed Finch, White-eared Ground-Sparrow, Sooty-capped Chlorospingus, Black-thighed Grossbeak, Flame-colored Tanager, Golden-browed Chlorophonia, and many more highland species.
Savegre Mountains. Overnight at Miriam´s Mountain Lodge. meals included Breakfast & Dinner.
5:30 am: We start early today in search of one of THE MOST beautiful birds in the world - The Resplendent Quetzal. After “mission accomplished,” it’s back to the hotel for breakfast.
8:00 am: Well-earned Breakfast time.
8:45 am. Get ready for a nice walk to Savegre Lodge gardens, lots of birds, Hummingbirds, a beautiful scenic walk to Savegre River. Pure air, pristine river, gorgeous Oak Forest, wonderful birds.
12:00 noon: Lunch on your own at Savegre lodge restaurant. (not included).
2:00 – 5:00 pm: Batzú shooting station and gardens. There’s so much going on in this jewel of a garden that just sitting back and watching the beauty unfold is a breathtaking experience.
6:30 pm: Dinner at the Miriam´s lodge´s restaurant, included.
Overland to Scarlet Macaw territory, overnight at Punta Leona Beach Resort. meals included Breakfast & Dinner.
Carara National Park is known worldwide as a birding destination with an unusually great diversity of species. The Park is one of Costa Rica’s premier sites for birdwatching, with the Scarlet Macaw - second largest species of Psittacidae (and a species in danger of extinction) - one of its standout attractions.
7:00 am: Breakfast. If needed, we`ll return to the Resplendent Quetzal feeding/nesting place.
8:00 am: Departure time. Today we drive approximately 5 hours to reach the Central Pacific lowlands. We’ll pace the journey with various comfort stops along the way where we can enjoy natural scenic views and bird shooting before moving on.
12:00 noon: Lunch at a local restaurant on the way, not included.
3:30 – 4:00 pm: Estimated arrival time. Check in, and free time to enjoy birding the gardens.
6:30 pm: Dinner at a local restaurant included.
Full day at Alvaro`s Owls & Long-tailed Manakin. Overnight at Punta Leona Beach Resort. meals included Breakfast & Dinner.
6:00 am: Departure time, breakfast at Alvaro´s place.
7.00 am: Arrival time at Alvaro`s Owls & Long-tailed Manakin shooting places
Alvaro has been working for years spotting and protecting species of birds that now-a-days count him as their friend and protector. He is excited to share his beautiful, feathered friends with us. You will have a rare and wonderful opportunity to see and/or photograph bird species that are otherwise very difficult to find, let alone to photograph beautifully.
< Possible species at Alvaro´s secret birds: owls in their day perch such as Black & white Owl, Ferruginous Pygmy Owl, Pacific Screech Owl, and Barn Owl Also, White-whiskered Puffbird, Lesser Ground Cuckoo, Black-headed Trogon and the beautiful Long Tailed Manakin at their LEK fully dancing, which make for great video as well as still shots
12:30 pm. Lunch at a local restaurant, not included.
Afternoon keep working on owls and other beauties of the region.
7:00 pm, Dinner time, included.
Private Photo boat trip along Tarcoles River and Mangrove Forest. Overnight at Punta Leona Beach Resort. meals included Breakfast & Dinner.
7:00 am, Breakfast at hotel´s restaurant.
8:00 am, Visit Carara National Park.
11:30 am, return to our hotel.
12:00 pm, Lunch on own. (not inlcuded).
2:30- 5:45 PM. Start our 3 hours photo boat trip along Tarcoles River, finishing at Guacalillo mangrove forest by the Pacific Ocean, most likely with a beautiful sunset.
6:30 pm. FAREWELL DINNER. Best sea-food restaurant in COSTA RICA. Included.
The Jungle Crocodile river photo expedition provides an observation platform for viewing a great wealth of wildlife, birds and scenery on the river as we travel through three different ecosystems (river, mangrove and river-mouth habitats). Each separate environment offers unforgettable moments within its distinct ecological zone.
Species we’ll be watching for, include shorebirds, Yellow-headed Caracara, Crested Caracara, Mangrove Hawk, Mangrove Hummingbird (endemic), Mangrove Vireo, Roseate Spoonbill, Southern Lapwings, Whimbrel, Willet, Magnificent Frigate-bird, Bare-throated Tiger Heron, Tricolored Heron, Yellow-crowned Hight-Heron, Boat-billed Heron, White Ibis, Black-necked stilt, Plovers and much more.
Transfer out to airport, Flight to Lima Peru. meals included Breakfast.
7:00 am: Breakfast.
*** Traveling day Costa Rica - Perú, therefore meals for this day will be on your own.
We will prepare our return to international airport according to our flight schedule to Perú.
THANK SO MUCH FOR LETTING US to provide with you the BEST PHOTO OPPORTUNITIES in COSTA RICA!
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