Join Bird Watcher’s Digest for our second trip to Costa Rica—a paradise for birders!
Our 2018 Costa Rica Reader Rendezvous was so popular, we decided to bring it back for 2020—but added a western hotspot twist! Bird Watcher’s Digest and Crescentia Expeditions custom-designed this Rendezvous for you, which covers four of the top birding areas in Costa Rica. We’ll also be staying at five breathtaking ecolodges along the way. Dates are January 7–14, which avoids the rainy season!
Group size is limited to 16. All BWD fans are welcome, but if you’ve never birded Costa Rica or the tropics, this might be the trip you’ve been waiting for! Our guides will be Mario Cordoba of Crescentia Expeditions, Raymond VanBuskirk, our newest BWD guide and manager of Redstart Birding, and a couple local Costa Rica guides.
With an extension of 51,100 square kilometers (a bit smaller than West Virginia), Costa Rica is home to more than 920 bird species and has one of the highest densities of species in the world. It has long benefitted from a stable democracy and has earned a reputation as being safe for tourists. Although the official language is Spanish, many Costa Ricans speak fluent English.
We’ll have the unique opportunity to explore Central Valley areas, where Costa Rica’s endemic Cabanis’ Ground-Sparrow can be found. Cabanis’ Ground-Sparrow is considered an endangered species because its habitat is shrinking due to urban sprawl.
Another important birding area will be the Central Pacific region, a unique transitional area where the dry North Pacific meets the very rainy and humid South Pacific. The Central Pacific region is home to iconic species like the Scarlet Macaw. A boat tour on the Tarcoles River will be a treat on this trip. The Tarcoles River and adjacent mangrove forests are of global relevance because many migratory water and shore birds station here during the winter months. Furthermore, the mangrove is home to many unique species including Costa Rica’s endemic Mangrove Hummingbird. We’ll also have the chance to explore the dry forest and wetlands visiting Hacienda Solimar, home of the endangered Jabiru.
The next leg of the trip will take us up to the top of the Tilaran Mountain Range. The Tilaran Mountain Range lies close to the continental divide and is nearly 6,000 feet above sea level, where the Tropical Cloud Forest occurs. For two days we’ll visit different private reserves in search of specialties like Resplendent Quetzal. During our stay here, we’ll join a local conservation group and take part in their project efforts to protect the Three-wattled Bellbird.
As you can see, this 8-day trip offers great opportunities to see and learn about Costa Rica’s birds and other wildlife, but also to contribute to its conservation efforts by joining hands-on conservation programs.
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