Top 5 Wildlife Experiences in Costa Rica
Find out the best way of seeing turtles in Costa Rica
Costa Rica is home to countless fascinating animals and it truly is a unique experience to see them in their natural habitat. Many of these creatures can be seen all year round although a guided tour may be necessary to see those that are more shy. Always follow the advice given to ensure the animals and yourself stay safe.
Whales and Dolphins
Whales can be seen in the waters around Costa Rica most of the year. Just May and June tend have the least sightings. From around December, whales from the California coast make their way to warmer seas in Central America whilst the Antarctic whales arrive to spend their winter months from around June. Costa Rica has the longest visiting period by humpback whales in the world. Organised whale watching tours are probably the surest way of seeing these elusive creatures. Dolphins are also seen all year long with several species living here including the Bottlenose dolphin.
These curious reptiles are a very popular attraction in Costa Rica. By doing some basic research it is possible to see turtles at any time you visit. There are a few different types of sea turtles which lay their eggs on either the Pacific or Caribbean shores. A couple of beaches have a huge influx of nesting turtles at a time (known as an arribadas) but others have just a few hundred at a time. Some beaches need to close to protect the turtles but plan ahead and you will be able to experience this amazing sight.
Costa Rica can boast over 50 different varieties of hummingbird. In fact they are pretty common! There are plenty of other birds too. The oddly named Orange-bellied Trogon stands out in the National Parks with its vibrant plumage and the quite beautiful Quetzal makes its home in the canopies of the forests. Most people would recognize the Scarlet Macaw's bright red feathers and the toucan's bill but many will not have been able to see these wonderful birds flying freely. Have your camera at the ready so you don't miss the moment.
Monkeys are so much fun to watch and even better to see them in their natural playground. There are four different species of monkey in Costa Rica including the threatened Central American Squirrel Monkey and the Geoffroy's Spider Monkey which is endangered. There are four areas in Costa Rica where you can see all four of the monkeys. One of them, Corcorado National Park, includes an impressive set of ecosystems which means that visitors are almost certain to see many different forms of wildlife.
These slow-moving creatures are strangely captivating. Various television programmes have increased the number of people wanting to see sloths in the wild. If you visit some of the National parks you are very likely to see one but, if you want to be sure that you don't leave Costa Rica disappointed, then take a tour with a guide. They are very experienced in spotting sloths up in the trees and can give you more information about the animal's living, feeding and breeding habits which can make the encounter more interesting.
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