Things to do on a wildlife vacation in Costa Rica…
If anyone knows how to do ecolodges, it’s Costa Rica. Striking the perfect balance between rustic and comfort, staying in the cloud forest, rainforest or on the coast in one of these environmentally conscious cabins is perfect for those who want their wilderness with a side of WiFi. Many generate their own renewable energy (solar, hydro), and serve locally-sourced food; as Costa Rica grows tropical fruit, coffee and – yes! – chocolate, this is something to savour indeed. You’ll also be closer to the wildlife: awake each morning to the sound of howler monkeys, watch birds from your porch, and dine to the sound of cicadas at dusk.
They say you should never work with animals or children – but Costa Rica does both happily. It’s fantastically easy to travel here as a family, with great infrastructure and family-friendly lodges, plus bilingual guides who turn the forest into a giant, thrilling classroom. The more developed Monteverde and Tortuguero are fab for those with younger children – or less keen on wilderness. Plus, it’s an easy self-drive destination – great for toilet stops, and packing plenty of toys.
Spending a couple of nights in each location is a good rule of thumb anywhere – but particularly important on a wildlife vacation in Costa Rica. The forests come alive at dusk and dawn, so daytrippers miss out on the morning birdsong and the impossibly raucous sunsets. Turtles, too, nest at nighttime – so adjust your body clock to become more in tune with nature!