Rain and Cloud Forest Odyssey

This 7 day / 6-night adventure includes Tortuguero National Park and the Monteverde Cloud Forest. Experience firsthand the tropical rainforests of Tortuguero National Park and stay at Tortuga Lodge & Gardens on the North Atlantic Coast, look for three species of monkeys, watch iconic birds like the Keel-billed Toucan, the Ringed Kingfisher and the Tiger Heron as they move through the forest. Visit the village of San Francisco de Tortuguero and participate in The Words Adventure Program, where guests teach local kids English.  

Continue to Monteverde Lodge & Gardens, hike in the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve and perhaps observe the stunning Resplendent Quetzal (Jan-Jul), learn from your Naturalist Guide about how Monteverde is considered the “Canary in the Mines” of Global Warming.  
Letter Codes: B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner TG = Transfer Guide, LG = Local Guide,  

Day 1: San José to Tortuguero (LD) (TG)  
After breakfast on your own, meet your local guide and driver in the lobby of your hotel and drive in an air conditioned van (shared with other guests) to the Atlantic lowlands near Limon (3 hours). About midday board a boat with your local Naturalist Guide and depart on the 1.5/2.5-hour trip to Tortuguero (shared with other guests). Arrive at the Lodge in the late afternoon.  
Overnight at Tortuga Lodge & Gardens, River View Downstairs Terrace Room  

Day 2 & 3: Tortuguero National Park (BLD)  
Two free days on your own. During your stay you will have one 3-hour boat excursion into Tortuguero National Park with a local guide.  
Originally intended to protect a major nesting beach of the Atlantic Green Sea Turtle, the Park now protects 51,870 acres, one of the last large areas of tropical rainforest in Central America. Eleven habitats are found in the park. Three species of monkeys (Spider, Howler, and White-faced), Three-toed Sloths, and river otters are frequently seen along the natural inland waterways and canals. Caiman, iguanas, river turtles, Basilisk Lizards, and Poison Dart Frogs (Dendrobates) inhabit the area, along with more than 320 species of birds including all six species of kingfishers found in the new world, three species of toucans, eight species of parrots, and other neotropical species such as the Slaty-tailed Trogon, White-collared Manakin, Purple-throated Fruitcrow, and White-fronted Nunbird and many more species which you will have the opportunity to observe during your boat rides through the backwater creeks of Tortuguero National Park.  

Return to the Lodge for lunch. The rest of your time is free for optional excursions (at additional cost).  
The Word Adventure  

For children in the developing world nothing beyond the Three R’s in their own language is as valuable for them to learn as English. Young adults with a working knowledge of English have vastly more opportunities than their mono-lingual peers. Yet in Tortuguero a town where at times there are more English speaking visitors than inhabitants, the vast majority of children grow-up without learning English.  
If you would find it rewarding to spend an hour a during one or more of the days that you will be at Tortuga Lodge sharing your English knowledge and learning about the life of child from Tortuguero, please let us know by emailing your Travel Planner. We will schedule the sessions so that they do not interfere with the other tours and excursions that you have planned.  
The lessons will take place in the town of San Francisco de Tortuguero. Transit time from the lodge by boat is five minutes. The Lodge will supply the transportation. There is no charge. Children as young as 10 are welcome to participate.  
Overnight at Tortuga Lodge & Gardens, River View Downstairs Terrace Room.  

Day 4: Tortuguero / San José / Monteverde (BD) 
After breakfast board a boat to cross the river to the Tortuguero airstrip. Here you will meet your pilot, for the 35-minute flight (one seat in plane) to San Jose. Upon arrival at the light aviation airport, meet your guide for the drive (4 hours) to Monteverde. Drive west until you reach the Pacific Coast and then turn inland towards the Tilaran Mountain Range. Arrive at Monteverde Lodge in time for lunch (on your own). Please note that checkout time is at 12:00 PM and you may have to wait to check into your room.  

After lunch, meet one of Monteverde Lodge’s Naturalist Guides and explore the Monteverde Lodge Gardens. This 15-year-old garden is home to Imperial Bromeliads, Costa Rica’s national flower known locally as the Guaria Morada and hedges of Blue porter weed and Lantana where butterflies feed constantly. Emerald Toucanet, Euphonia, White-faced Capuchin Monkey and the Agouti are frecuent visitors to the gardens.  
Dinner and overnight at Monteverde Lodge & Gardens, Forest View Downstairs Room.   

Day 5: Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve (BLD) (LG) 
Two full days in Monteverde. During your stay you will have one excursion (up to 10 people) to the Monteverde’s Cloud Forest Reserve. Your escort is one of Monteverde Lodge’s handpicked guides, the very best Naturalists in the region. Which reserve will be visited and the time of day (morning or afternoon), will be defined the day before depending on weather, recent sightings but most importantly where your Naturalist Guide thinks you will have the best experience.  

Check with the front desk the night before to get the final time of the tour to the Cloud Forest. A visit to the Monteverde Butterfly Garden is included, where butterflies and other insects are raised and displayed in screened enclosures with beautiful gardens.  
Overnight Monteverde Lodge & Gardens, Forest View Downstairs Room.  

Day 6: Monteverde Lodge (BLD) (LG)  
After breakfast, visit the Monteverde Butterfly Garden where butterflies and other insects are raised and displayed in screened enclosures with beautiful gardens. After lunch, you can enjoy any of the optional activities (at additional cost) which include a visit to a coffee plantation, bat museum, horseback riding and more. These can be set up directly with the lodge once you arrive. 
Overnight Monteverde Lodge, Forest View Downstairs Room.  

Day 7: Monteverde Lodge to San Jose or Guanacaste or Manuel Antonio or Montezuma/Santa Teresa or Arenal (BL) 
Morning free to continue to explore the region. After lunch, transfer to your drop off point.  
Drop Off Points 

While the price of this package only includes transportation beginning in San Jose, after Monteverde we’ll drop you off in any of the following areas, so that you can work this package into the flow of your Costa Rica itinerary.  
Estimated drive times from Monteverde are in parenthesis.  
San Jose (3.5-4 hours)  
Manuel Antonio (4.5 hours) 
Golfo Papagayo (3.5-4 hours)  
Coco - Ocotal (3.5-4 hours)  
Tamarindo – Conchal - Flamingo (4.5 hours)  
Montezuma – Santa Teresa (6-7 hours – you’ll cross the Gulf of Nicoya via ferry)  
Arenal (3-4 hours)  
Van transfers from San Jose are with Costa Rica Expeditions. 
Transfers from Manuel Antonio, Guanacaste (Papagayo, Coco, Tamarindo), Montezuma/Santa Teresa or Arenal are with shuttle transportation companies that normally pick-up and drop off at several hotels before embarking on the journey. They use a hub system, so you may change to a vehicle specific to your destination halfway through the trip.  

The driver will be Spanish speaking, and it’s important to keep in mind that this transfer will not be accompanied by sightseeing or wildlife stops. We offer private transfers with our vans and drivers at considerable additional cost. 

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