Caribbean Sojourn
El Copal might be the highlight of our 79-day Central American birding adventure. 182 species identified at El Copal Lodge and Reserve and 203 for the area. We are torn between hiking the dark primary forest in search of the harder-to-find and fewer ovenbirds, woodcreepers and antbirds or staying on the deck watching the almost constant parade of tanagers and hummingbirds.
--Bert Frenz


"This is my type of birding: just sit in a chair and let the birds come to me."

--Shari Frenz, www.bafrenz.com

This 8-day tour, Caribbean Sojourn, is especially for birders! Visit El Copal, then see the Fall Raptor Migration on the Atlantic Coast with an expert guide.

Price per person:
$1585 double, $1200 triple/$1682 single


Day 1: Welcome to Costa Rica!
An ACTUAR driver will meet you at the International Airport in San José and take you to your hotel.

Day 2: Birding at El Copal!
Your guide and driver will take you through lush green mountains, by clear rushing rivers to El Copal Reserve near Turrialba. Over 380 bird species have been identified in the forests of El Copal Reserve, making it a paradise for birdwatchers. It is part of a biological corridor between Tapantí-Macizo de la Muerte National Park and La Amistad International Park.

The community will share their traditional activities like sugar cane cultivation and making "tapa de dulce", the native hard brown sugar. After a hearty campesino lunch, go birding in the El Copal Reserve. It's a good place to see the snowcap, lovely cotinga, scale antpitta, scarlet thighed dacnis and white-collared manakin. At dinner, learn about El Copal's conservation association. Overnight at El Copal, all meals included.

Day 3 Immerse yourself in El Copal Reserve!
The sun is out by 5:00 a.m. and some birds are active a bit earlier. A forest hike with your guide will be followed by breakfast and more birding. Lunch at midday and back in the forest. There's an optional trip that afternoon to Guayabo National Monument, Costa Rica's only pre-Columbian site. It's a tranquil bird-filled spot, about 75 minutes north of El Copal. Overnight at El Copal, all meals included.

Day 4 : In search of the Agami Agami      
Your guide and driver will take you to Laguna Madre de Dios, one of the only Costa Rican nesting sites of the Agami Agami, a beautiful heron. Continue on to Casa Calateas on the Caribbean coast, where you can visit their observation platform. September and October are the months of the impressive raptor migration, when millions of migrating raptors touch down in the Talamanca area. Overnight at Casa Calateas, all meals included.

Day 5: Spot wildlife in Cahuita National Park!       
Birding and wildlife observation in Cahuita National Park, where you can see toucans, parrots, hawks, manikins, tanagers, hummingbirds, magpies, and woodpeckers, as well as birds endemic to Talamanca. The trail along the beach is also a good place to see sloths, monkeys and iguanas. Optional snorkeling tour if the weather is clear. Have a delicious down home Caribbean lunch in the town of Cahuita. That evening, learn to make the famous Caribbean fish and coconut stew, rondón. Overnight at Casa Calateas, all meals included.

Day 6: By dugout canoe to BriBri territory!
Get up early and travel with your guide to the village of Bambú where you will meet the BriBri boatmen who will take you by dugout canoe to the isolated riverside village of Yorkín. Meet the villagers, and see how they process chocolate from their sacred tree, the cacao. Taste the fruit fresh from the pod, and see how it is dried, roasted and ground. The community of Yorkín raises cacao and bananas in harmony with nature in order to protect the huge number of migrating birds that touch down in this region. Try some organic bananas dipped in freshly made chocolate sauce! You'll spend the night in Puerto Viejo near the beach. Breakfast, lunch and snack included.

Day 7: Relax at the beach!
Relax at the beach in the morning. After lunch, return to San José, staying at Hotel 1492.
Breakfast included.

Day 8: Come back soon!    
Your guide and driver will pick you up in order to get you to the airport three hours before your return flight. Fly home with happy memories of Costa Rica!

All tours can be customized to meet your travel rhythm, your interests, and your budget.

To sign up for this tour or set up a travel consultation, write beatrice@keytocostarica.beablake.com

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All tours can be customized to meet your travel rhythm, your interests, and your budget.

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Community Based EcotLodges
For these itineraries:

Birding from Cloudforest to Beach