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Birding Packages

Bird watching in Costa Rica – An introduction to Paradise

What type of Birder are you? Do like taking as many pictures as you can or do you save your film for that one special bird? Do you love hiking the trails or sitting and waiting for that exceptional moment when you find what you’re looking for? No matter what type of birder you are, you certainly will find what you are looking for here. The Birds of Costa Rica are exotic and rare. You will find a vast array of colors and species from the chatty Scarlet Macaw to the Resplendent Quetzal. Explore the deep jungles of Corcovado or hike the hills of San Gerardo De Dota. Take it easy as you stroll through the trails near the Caribbean for some tropical birding or explore the fabled Monteverde Cloud Forest. From lowlands bathing in humidity to dry forests, mangroves and even tall mountain peaks. All in all, you will have a wonderful time on these Costa Rica Birding Tours and Packages.

birding scarlett macawCosta Rica bird facts

Costa Rica may be small, but it contains some of the highest density of biodiversity in the world. With 5% of the world biodiversity enclosed in 6 ecozones and 12 ecosystems, Costa Rica has the natural infrastructure to house 921 different species of birds which equals 10% of the world’s birdlife. Costa Rica is a safe haven for many bird species including Scarlet macaws, the Quetzal, great potoo and Jaribu Stork. You will also find many other birds like Toucans, Humming Birds, Trogons, White Throated Magpie, Bluecrowned Motmot, Bluegray Tanager, and many more. The world-renowned flora and fauna is what brings most tourists to this gorgeous country.

If you are wondering about the best time to spot birds, you can technically do so all year. If you are keen to spot migratory bird species, your visit should be scheduled between August and December for the Autumn migration and from January to May for the winter migration when the birds return north.

Toucan Punta LeonaRare and endangered species

Costa Rica’s ecologically rich land caters to many different species of which some are close to extinction. Of the great number of bird species found in Costa Rica, 630 are resident species and 19 are said to be endangered. Many birders travel to Costa Rica to catch of glimpse of the endangered Scarlet Macaw, Green Macaw, and the stunning Quetzal in one of the various protected reserves or indeed the Great Curassow which can be spotted in Corcovado or Santa Rosa National Park. The Mangrove Hummingbird, for instance, can only be found in Costa Rica and has become endangered due to loss of natural habitat.

If you plan a trip to the remote Osa Peninsula or even the Talamanca mountain ranges, you will have an increased chance to spot some of Costa Rica’s raptor bird species. More common are birds like the Black Hawk or Osprey but perhaps you can even catch a glimpse of the rare Harpy Eagle.

QuetzalCosta Rica is probably most famous for the gorgeous Toucan, also known as ‘flying bananas. Costa Rica houses 6 species of toucan included the Keel-Billed Toucan that can be found in the lowlands and the Chesnut-Mandibled Toucan that inhabits the Pacific Southwest as well as the more dense jungle along the shores. Have a look at our wide variety of bird watching packages and allow us to make some suggestions on the best place to visit!

Best of Birding in Costa Rica’s Caribbean Picture

Best of Birding in Costa Rica’s Caribbean

This is the best of birding on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica Go through To...

From More than $2000
SJO
Best of Birding in Costa Rica Paradise Picture

Best of Birding in Costa Rica Paradise

Experience the Best of Birding in Costa Rica. There is such a diversity here ...

From More than $2000
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Birding in Costa Rica’s Top Three Destinations Picture

Birding in Costa Rica’s Top Three Destinations

Start your trip off in Poas near the Volcano than head up to Arenal, and fina...

From More than $2000
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Costa Rica Classic Birding Package Picture

Costa Rica Classic Birding Package

Visit the amazing destinations of the Arenal Volcano, Manuel Antonio National...

From More than $2000
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Nature Birding Tour Picture

Nature Birding Tour

You will see all kind of different birds on this amazing nature tour. Check o...

From More than $2000
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Full Board Birding Trip! Picture

Full Board Birding Trip!

Welcome to the best birding trip you will ever have. This Full Board Birding ...

From More than $2000
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Costa Ballena Exploration Picture

Costa Ballena Exploration

This is the best way to get away from it all going on the Costa Ballena Vacat...

From More than $2000
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Dancing with Quetzals Picture

Dancing with Quetzals

The Dancing with Quetzals Birding package includes destinations like Uvita, T...

From More than $2000
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Birding in Costa Rica’s Eco-Zones Picture

Birding in Costa Rica’s Eco-Zones

This birding vacation will take you to the best birding hotspots in the count...

From More than $2000
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Costa Rica’s Top Birding Spots Picture

Costa Rica’s Top Birding Spots

You will visit the best birding destinations in Costa Rica and experience thr...

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The Southern Highlands & Pacific Picture

The Southern Highlands & Pacific

This birding package is the best option if you want to explore the Highlands ...

From $1500-$2000
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Birding in Costa Rica’s Northern Zone Picture

Birding in Costa Rica’s Northern Zone

Come to Costa Rica and have a truly unique vacation in the Northern Zone of t...

From More than $2000
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Birding in Costa Rica’s Nicoya Peninsula Picture

Birding in Costa Rica’s Nicoya Peninsula

This birding vacation will take you to the most popular volcanoes in the coun...

From More than $2000
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Caribbean Lowlands Birding Tour Picture

Caribbean Lowlands Birding Tour

This vacation is perfect for every birder who wants to experience the birdlif...

From More than $2000
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The best birding destinations in Costa Rica

With so many species to discover and so many destinations to choose from, you might be slightly overwhelmed by the long list at your disposal. But we are here to help you plan the perfect trip! Here are some of our most highly recommended birding locations.


 

Carara National ParkYou may know this park for the Tarcoles River and the hundreds of crocodiles that lounge about underneath what is now known as the Crocodile Bridge, but Carara also a great bird watching location. This is a great place to spot the endangered but stunning Scarlet Macaw. Once this proud member of the parrot family lived across most of Central America. Now few areas remain and Carara is one of those that is home to a larger number of wild Scarlet Macaws.


Monteverde90 % of Monteverde consist of untouched forest. This is truly a place where you can see nature develop in its natural way and with different ecological zones covering the area, you will also get a chance to see many different species. One of the most famous inhabitants of Monteverde is the Respeldent Quetzal. Next to this gracious beauty, you also have the opportunity to photograph Hummingbirds at the Hummingbird Gardens near the entrance.


Rancho Naturalista BirdThe Rancho Naturalista is actually a lodge that is located in the Central Highlands. This lodge has been built with the main objective to create a birding paradise. Home to over 450 species of birds, a stay at the Rancho Lodge ensures some sightings of its beautiful inhabitants. After a good night’s sleep, you can see how every morning before sunrise bananas are laid out by the feeders to attract birds like Chachalacas, Collared Aracaris or if you are lucky, the Rufous Motmot. The lodge has several trails you can walk and one of them leads to the natural pools where hummingbirds have been known to bathe in the late afternoon. You are of course not bound to the hotel grounds and if you so desire, we can plan some tours for you in the surrounding areas like the Dota Highlands or the Tapanti National Park.


Herbarium House La Selva Biological StationThis is the destination for you if you want to see as many birds as possible in a short amount of time. Not just a tourist destination, La Selva is also a celebrated research station. You can see over 450 species here and over half of them are local! You can combine your birding trip with some tours like white water rafting or horseback riding.


Manuel Antonio Travel Packages

This park may be the smallest one in Costa Rica, but it still houses around 230 different bird species. While you can spot a wide variety of animals here like sloths and monkeys, with a bit of luck you can also spot the Motmot and the Scarlet Macaw.


La Paz Waterfall Gardens Humming BirdThe La Paz Waterfall Gardens are more than just stunning. You can visit the La Paz Aviary to see Toucans and visit the Hummingbird Garden for that perfect Hummingbird shot.


Osa-Peninsula-TucanWelcome to Costa Rica’s wild child. More remote than other areas on the list and so more ecologically interesting. The Osa Peninsula is home to the Corcovado National Park which boasts tropical rainforest with a list of animal species that far exceeds any other in the country. As far as birds go, around 350 species inhabit this area and the Scarlet Macaws can often be seen flying in pairs. If you travel down to the mangrove, you can also spot a large variety of water birds. Wondering about the perfect accommodation? Then we recommend Aguila de Osa.


Bird

This Refuge can be pared with a day trip to the iconic Arenal and La Fortuna and is a great place to spot aquatic bird species. In fact, the Arenal Observatory Lodge is a great accommodation to help you spot a variety of birds in this area. In Cano Negro, be prepared to spot herons, storks, egrets, and the roseate spoonbill. This is great place to visit during the rainy season between the months of April and November since the water will swell.


Palo Verde MacawA boat trip down the Tempisque River is a rewarding experience that is bound to introduce you to several birds and water birds high on your list. Birds like the tiger heron, Jaribu, Hibis and Lesser Yellow-Headed Vulture frequent this area.

 


6 tips for Costa Rica Birding Tours

  • Use a local guide who knows where to look and also usually carries a spotting scope for close-up views of the birds.
  • Bring a digital camera since you can usually take photos through the guide’s scope.
  • Buy a good field guide.  Some recommendations include: “The Birds of Costa Rica: A Field Guide” by Garrigues and Dean, “Birds of Costa Rica” by Richard Garrigues, and “A Bird-Finding Guide to Costa Rica” by Barrett Lawson.
  • Know that hummingbirds can be hard to spot. You’ll be sure to see them if you can find a hummingbird feeder like the ones in Monteverde.
  • Bring a tape recorder, or use your iPhone/Smartphone to record bird sounds!
  • Don’t forget your binoculars!

Are you feeling motivated to get started? Then let us put together an itinerary for your next Costa Rica Vacation!

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