Costa Rica Wildlife Explorer
A ten-day private nature tour to see Costa Rica's wildlife and natural wonders
Personalised journeys from start to finish
Save an acre of rainforest each time you travel
Every detail taken care of
- Private tour options in the Osa Peninsula, Corcovado National Park, the Cloud Forests and the Nicoya Peninsula
- Luxury accommodation throughout
- Meet and greet airport service
- Full support from your Travel Designer and Concierge before, during and after your trip
At a glance
Costa Rica is a wildlife lover’s dream. It may be small, but it is home to 5% of the world’s biodiversity and its forests teem with monkeys, sloths, birds and butterflies.
You’ll start your 11-day discovery on the Osa Peninsula, home to pristine rainforest and beautiful coastline. This is a great place not only to spot wildlife but to slow down, unwind and start taking in the little details – the sound of the ocean and the birdcalls that carry through the canopy.
It’s then time to head to Costa Rica’s cloud forests, a mystical place shrouded in mist. Here you’ll hike to waterfalls and set out in search of minute hummingbirds and the wonderfully colourful quetzal bird. Your final three nights will be spent in Manuel Antonio, a beautiful national park on the Pacific coast. Hike through its lush forests, keeping your eyes peeled for monkeys, iguanas, frogs and sloths.
Example Trip Itinerary
Private transfer to your hotel in San Jose
Enjoy your evening in this metropolitan capital city, relaxing at your hotel after your international flight.
Private transfer to San Jose airport
Light aircraft from San Jose to Puerto Jimenez
Private transfer to your accommodation on the Osa Peninsula
Accommodation in Osa Peninsula
- 6 cabins & 6 rooms
Set in its own 185-acre nature reserve buffering the Corcovado National Park, El Remanso eco-lodge is the perfect place for nature lovers, adventurers or those simply looking for a peaceful getaway. Its six cabins range in size and speciality, but are impeccably and simply decorated in tropical hardwoods, bamboo furniture, natural stone and wood screens. The private terraces are hung with hammocks and set with elegant chairs. There is a magnificent group cabin that can sleep eight people, making it perfect for families or groups. Similarly designed in rustic fashion and in harmony with its jungle habitat are two deluxe rooms and four standard rooms, although if you’re after an ocean-view it is worth mentioning this. The spectacular setting of El Remanso is matched by its knowledgeable and helpful staff who make every attempt to make your stay a personal one. The international cuisine fused with a few ‘Tico’ touches served at the hotel’s restaurant is very good. Being completely immersed in the pristine and richly biodiverse rainforest, surrounded by the sounds of macaws and howler monkeys, El Remanso has the advantage of also offering a range of private and bespoke activities. The hotel can also provide you with two in-house naturalists should you want a true, local expert to show you around. El Remanso now has eight bungalows and six rooms in Casa Poniente.
- 17 bungalows
- Restaurant and bar
- Swimming pool
- Yoga area
You don’t have to forego luxury in favour of natural beauty at the safari-style eco-lodge Lapa Rios. Located in one of the most diverse primary rainforests in the world, the Corcovado National Park, this ethically-responsible hotel does all it can to blend inconspicuously into its delicate surroundings and to create as little disturbance to the environment as possible. Guests enjoy exceptional intimacy with nature in authentic comfort. Its lodgings are 17 simple, spacious and stylish open-sided thatch bungalows decorated with bamboo furniture, warm wood flooring, and private bathrooms with two showers. As such Lapa Rios’ assimilation into its rainforest habitat means that you often get toucans visiting your bungalow balcony, and the adventure and wildlife activities have never been so close to hand. There are no TVs, phones or internet in the bungalows, so it’s the perfect place to escape and unwind completely. The hotel and each bungalow have sweeping views of the Pacific and rainforest canopies, and it’s a short downhill walk to a quiet and beautiful beach for a dip in the ocean. The main lodge has a high roof and open sides, magically lit by candlelight in the evenings. Tuck into hearty meals made using responsibly-caught local seafood, ethically-sourced meat and fresh vegetables at Brisa Azul Restaurant and Bar. And sip on organic South American wines with your fellow guests as the sunsets.
- Seven rooms
- Three à la carte, multi-course meals per day
- Fresh water pool
Nestled in the tranquil waters of Golfo Dulce, the luxury Playa Cativo Eco Lodge is unique in the beauty of its secluded surroundings: accessible only by boat, it’s set on 1,000 acres of private rainforest with both the Piedras Blancas National Park – a former extension of the Corcovado National Park – and its own pristine, sandy beach on its doorstep. The lodge is well aware of the value of its environs and practices high sustainability policies. It was built using precious indigenous wood salvaged from an older lodge and a fallen-tree program and fittingly, each of its comfortable rooms have been decorated using reclaimed hardwood and colourful tile works crafted by local artisans. The bathrooms feature hot-water rain showers and biodegradable bathroom amenities, and each suite is just a few steps away from the beach with majestic ocean views. Surrounded by some of the most unspoilt rainforest in the world, Playa Cativo Eco offers an unrivalled opportunity to immerse yourself in nature. Speak to your travel designer about adding excursions such as kayaking in the Rio Esquinas Mangrove-Ocean, hiking in the Piedras Blancas Nature, guided expeditions to the Nocturnal Rainforest, beach, rainforest and wetland birdwatching tours, Golfo Dulce half-day snorkelling trips, standup paddle boarding adventures, and dolphin and whale sightseeing to your stay.
- Five cabins and a four-roomed guest house
- Restaurant and bar
- Reading and board game area
- Yoga deck
Nicuesa is a true ecolodge: set in a remote 165-acre preserve on the east coast of the Osa Peninsula, accessible only by boat, and built in harmony with its surroundings, with a wide range of eco-adventures and sustainable initiatives. More importantly Nicuesa wants its guests to purposefully ‘lose themselves’ in the hotel’s seclusion and closeness with nature. This is no better illustrated than by its design, which is all open-air and constructed simply and stylishly from warm native woods and stone; very approachable to the odd toucan or majestic blue butterfly. The five private canopy-level cabins have open yet shuttered sides allowing for the boundaries of indoor and outdoor to again pleasantly merge. Wooden floors and furniture, beds draped with sheer awnings, ceiling fans, private bathrooms with hot water, and private terraces with privileged views across the jade-coloured Dulce gulf make up every cabin. The Mango guest house has f our rooms and is good for families. Nicuesa is a fantastic option for those who are very comfortable with being this close to nature, and perhaps willing to forego more luxurious amenities in favour of the experience in hand. There are yoga classes from the hotel’s splendid yoga deck, a range of eco activities and adventure excursions are available and the staff are wonderfully enthusiastic about you getting the most out of your favourably remote surroundings. The food served at the restaurant is quite fantastic too. And at night it is all lit by cosy candlelight as you dine with the other guests on an array of local cuisine options from fresh fish to tropical fruits straight from the preserve.
- 14 rooms
- Swimming pool
Tucked away in the dense virgin rainforest that engulfs most of this peninsula, is the 170-acre beachfront private estate of Casa Corcovado. The main building and restaurant is a pretty red, white and ochre property in the style of a plantation hacienda around which the thick jungle foliage has been tamed, smoothed and combed into lovely gardens and lawns. The lodge has been designed and constructed to minimise its impact on the environment. There are six freestanding deluxe bungalows for those after more privacy and space, four junior suites and four honeymoon suites all decorated in the traditional Costa Rica style of polished hardwoods and natural materials punctuated by the vibrant patterns and colours of the linen and upholstery. A lovely base from which to explore the wildlife, rare fauna and enjoy some unique nautical activities, there is also a good restaurant here which is pretty key given the remoteness of where you are. Rates are full board.
The pristine rainforests and the rugged natural beauty of the Osa Peninsula make this region among the most beautiful areas in Costa Rica. Declared ‘one of the most biologically intense places on earth’ by the National Geographic Magazine, the Osa Peninsula along with Drake Bay is home to an incredible array of wildlife, including mammals such as white-face capuchins, margays, ocelots, tapirs, jaguars and pumas. Scarlet macaws, pelicans and woodpeckers are just some of the birdlife to enjoy and you can watch humpback whales and dolphins cavort in the gulf inlet.
Private transfer to the airstrip
Light aircraft from Puerto Jimenez to San Jose
Private transfer to the Central Cloud Forests
The Central Cloud Forest
Accommodation in The Central Cloud Forest
- 34 casitas
- Restaurant, cafe and lobby bar
- Cinema and games room
- Gym and yoga centre
Discover Costa Rica’s delicate cloud forest at the rustic Villa Blanca. The 34 cosy traditional casitas arranged over the 75-acre private Los Angeles Biological Sanctuary and Reserve are each wonderfully secluded and command immediate vistas and access to the forest. Typically Costa Rican in style, they are decorated with natural stone, dark woods, bamboo and dotted with native art pieces, corner fireplaces and the odd rocking chair or two. The deluxe casitas are definitely worth paying that little bit extra for and the honeymoon suite has it’s own private Jacuzzi. Owned by an ex-president of Costa Rica, Villa Blanca is also highly renowned for its communal ethos and village-like layout, including its own organic food garden, dairy, and greenhouses; the produce of which is served in the hotel’s restaurant and café. Staff are particularly proud of this and eager to look after guests as well as inform you about the hotel’s conservation projects. Only over an hour’s drive from San Jose airport, Villa Blanca has a peaceful and familial feel. Forest trails start from the hotel’s gardens as well as there being many private expedition programmes to choose from. There is a well-appointed spa where you could treat yourself to a massage or maybe take a yoga class.
- 25 rooms
- Pool table
- Hot tub
Nestled in the mountains next to the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, this handsome Austrian chalet-style hotel is a well-established property with a traditional feel. Views here are stunning, and the hotel strongly promotes sustainability and history. The hotel is family run and has been in operation since 1985. Yet recent refurbishments have meant that the accommodation at Belmar has all the modern amenities you would expect from a 21st-century hotel. The rooms are tastefully decorated with hardwood fittings, and have floor-to-ceiling windows and private balconies to maximise the magnificent views of the Nicoya Peninsula. The newest suites are located in a separate building 100 metres from the lobby – great for those looking for some extra privacy. Service here is excellent and the restaurant serves a great breakfast buffet and delicious evening meals. Enjoy cocktails and traditional Tico appetisers during the ever-popular Happy Hour. Just south-west of the Arenal Volcano area along the Tilaran mountain range and just under a three hour (145 kilometres) from San Jose lies the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. Home to over 100 species of mammals, 120 reptilian and amphibian species, 400 species of bird, and over 420 different types of orchid, this is life at its most concentrated, delicate and prolific. The Monteverde joins onto another cloud forest in the area, named the Santa Elena Reserve. With six ecological zones Monteverde is one of the few remaining habitats that support all six species of the cat family – jaguars, ocelots, pumas, oncillas, margays, and jaguarundis – as well as the endangered three-wattled bellbird and resplendent quetzal. There are over eight miles (13 km) of trails to explore this reserve. The Santa Elena, which is the first community administered reserve in the country, has also been a very supportive habitat to the Spider Monkey which you can spot, plus on a clear day you can see the Arenal Volcano from its observation tower.
Time to enjoy the natural evergreen environment of the misty Cloud Forests. This unique environment is almost always shrouded in mist giving it an ethereal feel, as if nothing else beyond the cloud exists. The forests are home to colourful birds, butterflies, ocelots and an incredible array of lichen, moss and orchids.
Head out into the forest with an expert to spot some of the area's incredible birdlife. Minute hummingbirds, rare black guans and elusive quetzals will provide thrilling glimpses and exciting photo opportunities.
Private transfer to Manuel Antonio
Accommodation in Manuel Antonio
- 38 rooms
- Two restaurants
- Beach bar
- Swimming pools
Sitting in 11 acres of its own private nature reserve and bookended by the stunning Playa Espadilla and Playitas beach, Arenas del Mar is a superb hotel for enjoying the delights of Manuel Antonio National Park which is within walking distance. The rooms, of which there are 38, are all well equipped with private balconies looking out onto the Pacific Ocean and surrounding coastal islands. As a leader in the trend of sustainable hotels in this country, Arenas del Mar prides itself on its eco-conscious practices and ethos and the service is both friendly and efficient. The two restaurants at the hotel place a strong emphasis on fresh, wholesome and local food. The menus showcase gourmet Costa Rican cuisine and responsibly-caught seafood. There are also delicious vegetarian and vegan options available. There are a number of tours and activities to choose from so you can really take advantage of all that the area has to offer (and it offers a lot) or simply relax on the hotel’s private beach, at the poolside or indulge in a spa treatment or two.
- 58 rooms
- Two pools
- Two restaurants and a bar
- Butterfly garden
- Wildlife centre
Tucked on a hillside along the Central Pacific coast you’ll discover Si Como No, a 10-acre resort and wildlife refuge. Make yourself at home and relax on one of the hotel’s lush jungle terraces, enjoy the views out over the beautiful gardens towards the sea and Manuel Antonio National Park. Design meets comfort in the 58 rooms which have been purposefully set against the contours of the jungle hillside, giving the impression that they are seamlessly connected to the surrounding tropical forests. Very Costa Rican in style, fun and family-friendly, Si Como No’s extensive facilities and reliable service makes it one of the best equipped and relaxed barefoot luxury hotels in Manuel Antonio. The rooms are spacious and comfortable, and it’s worth getting a room in the newer part of the hotel or perhaps even a deluxe one which have great views of the Pacific Ocean. Colourful, tropical interiors, stained glass windows and lots of natural wood illustrate the very Tico character of the hotel. There is also a well-appointed spa offering massages and beauty treatments, two restaurants, a butterfly garden, wildlife centre and even a 45-seater cinema. The hotel’s location near the smallest yet second most popular national park in the country with 4000 hectares of rainforest and 136,000 acres of marine reserve means a plentiful choice of local activities and adventure expeditions.
- 20 rooms
- Pool bar
- Infinity pool
- Spa and gym
Nonchalantly set in its own private nature reserve, Gaia stands out in the Manuel Antonio resort area as a very stylish and modern hotel with that intimate boutique twist. The hotel’s immersion commands wonderful seclusion, tranquillity and uninterrupted rooftop views, making Gaia a perfect hideaway for honeymooners or for those looking for style, privacy and pampering. Its minimal design and luxury are in stark contrast to the tangled jungle packed around it. The 20 rooms fall into four categories of which the suites (Deluxe and Gaia) or the two-bedroom villas are highly recommended, in particular, the deluxe suite has a rooftop terrace with fantastic vistas and its own pool. At La Luna, you can indulge in local and international flavours for breakfast, lunch dinner, and every evening they host a Tapas Time. Enjoy the panoramic views of the tropical rainforest and the Pacific Ocean while you savour the fresh, healthy dishes. The size of the hotel means it manages a high level of bespoke service, with your own personalised concierge, room service at any time, and a free shuttle minibus into town or to the airport. Head out in Manuel Antonio National Park on guided tours, go hiking and horse riding, and spend time in the water snorkelling and scuba diving.
- 27 rooms
- Two infinity pools
- Restaurant and bar
- Private beach access
- Kitchens in villas
Describing itself as “a jungle getaway for discerning adults”, Makanda certainly delivers on luxury, uninterrupted seclusion and romance. Recent renovations have extended its accommodation offering and incorporated more natural materials like marble and wood into the design, and added bespoke artworks as features. The 27 rooms and suites are fully immersed in a haven of southern Pacific rainforest between the fishing port of Quepos and the Manuel Antonio National Park. The décor is stylish, modern and typically tropical with the odd indigenous piece of art so as not to completely displace you from your rich flora surroundings and native appreciation. All the accommodation is spaciously designed with lots of amenities, sea views, and terraces so that all you’ll need is right there in your room. Communal spaces are cosier, giving this hideaway a tranquil character. The villas are all individually decorated and are an even more secluded option with their own kitchens and mini Japanese gardens, perfect for honeymooners or couples. Enjoy uncomplicated dishes featuring fresh local ingredients at Arbol Restaurant. Old recipes and familiar tastes are celebrated and reimagined. With amazing ocean views, the restaurant has been designed to make the most of its jungle setting.
This is the country's most popular coastal retreat for many a reason, namely its controlled development, marine reserves, national parks and white sandy beaches. You can enjoy both the secluded, relaxing side of this location as well as the many water activities on offer - scuba diving, snorkelling, sailing, kayaking and dolphin spotting.
Tour one of Costa Rica’s most stunning national parks on the Manuel Antonio National Park hike. An experienced guide, while taking you through this natural world of wonder that is bursting with biodiversity, will point out several species of monkeys, sloths, coatimundis and much more.
Created in 1972 to preserve the richness of the forest and the idyllic beaches, Manuel Antonio is home to many of Costa Rica's endangered species. Despite being one of the country's smallest national parks, it is regarded as one of its best.
Private transfer to San Jose airport
Get in Touch
Costa Rica Wildlife Explorer
How We Work
We create fully personalised trips from start to finish, working with you to pick locations, accommodation and guides that suit you.
Each time you travel with us, you preserve an acre of precious rainforest through our partnerships.
From in-depth private tours to restaurant reservations, we take care of every detail so you can make the most of your journey.