This easy-going tour will visit the best birding destinations in central Costa Rica, starting with Rancho Naturalista in the extremely bird-rich Caribbean foothills, and ending in the Talamanca mountains, where dozens of hummingbirds buzz around feeders and misty forests where the awe-inspiring Resplendent Quetzal calls home. We will also make a stop on the Pacific slope to further diversify our birding experience on this highland-focused tour.
Final Payment Due: January 13, 2023, or at registration if after.
Maximum group size is 10 registrants, plus guide(s) and driver(s). If there are fewer than 6 registrants, this tour may be canceled or re-negotiated. Note that if you want a roommate we can try to find you one, but we cannot guarantee all guests a roommate. If none is available, you will be charged the single supplement.
The tour price (fee) includes services from upon arrival on Day 1 into Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) in San José until your transfer to the airport on Day 9.
All travelers must have a current passport, valid for at least six months beyond the start date of this tour.
Citizens from the US, Canada, the UK, and most European nations do not need a visa. If you are unsure about the entry requirements for your nationality, we advise checking on the Costa Rican immigration website here:http://www.costarica-embassy.org/index.php?q=node/51
We strongly recommend all guests purchase travel insurance, including coverage for medical evacuation services and trip curtailment, in advance of this tour. It is important to protect against financial losses in the event that a registrant becomes unable to participate in the tour. Note that such coverage is often non-refundable so please check with the Hillstar Nature team before purchasing it, to confirm the tour is to proceed as planned.
If cancellation is received:
The team at Hillstar Nature reserves the right to refuse service to any registrant/participant who acts disruptive, routinely disrespectful, or in a manner inconsistent with the goals of the company. All guests are expected to comply with the rules and agenda set forth by the guide(s) of the tour, and to behave in a way that is considerate and conducive to a quality group experience.
Pace, Rigor, Climate & Pests
Elevation is a consideration on this tour. Please consult your physician regarding travel to areas of high elevation. Elevations range from 2,000 feet to about 11, 000 feet (600-3,400m) above sea level during our 9 day tour. Especially when up high, but really throughout the tour, we will take our time, and keep a slow and relaxed pace while we seek and enjoy birds and other wildlife.
Generally, nature enthusiasts visiting Costa Rica do not encounter diseases like Malaria, but it is possible, however extremely unlikely as we will NOT be visiting the lowlands near sea level.. We urge guests to consult a doctor about vaccinations and medications prior to travel.
Elevation sickness is possible given some of the areas we visit on this tour, so we urge guests to seek medical advice on spending time at high elevation as well. All participants are required to show proof of COVID-19 vaccinations.
The water is safe to drink everywhere in the country, but if you are ever unsure, we will make sure to get bottled/filtered water for you.
Please limit yourself to one suitcase/duffel and another daypack/backpack for daily outings from the lodge. Group travel dictates we consider our fellow traveler’s comfort, and this includes not over-packing.
Lightweight and breathable clothing good for warm climates is recommended, as well as neutral colors and earth tones to increase the chances of close bird encounters and reduce startling wildlife.
Rain jackets/rain shells are recommended as we may encounter light afternoon showers, but they usually don’t last long.
Warm layers for mornings and evenings in the Talamanca Mountains where it can be 45 F degrees at dawn, but it warms up quickly. A warm hat, gloves, and an inner sweater and outer jacket layer are recommended for those who are chilled easily.
Comfortable trail or hiking shoes are recommended, as well as sandals or light shoes for wearing around the lodge and on travel days.
Power outlets in Costa Rica are Type A (2-prong) and Type B (2-prong with ground), the same plug configuration as the United States and Canada.