Things to Do when You Visit Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a popular destination for nature tourism, and its greatest comparative advantage is its well-established system of national parks and protected regions. The nation also offers a number of world-renowned beaches, both in the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, that are easily accessible by plane and land from both coastlines, as well as numerous active volcanoes that may be visited safely.

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Wildlife

Costa Rica is well-known for boasting an exceptionally high rate of biodiversity across its tropical forests, which include rain forests, cloud forests, and dry forests. There are tropical mammals like monkeys, sloths, tapirs, and wild cats, as well as an incredible variety of insects and other species.

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There are several migratory and local birds. With 25 percent of the country designated as national parks and protected areas, there are still many locations to visit to experience the country’s diverse fauna and beautiful environment. The more you venture off the usual road, the more likely you are to witness a diverse range of plants and wildlife.

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Costa Rica has a high level of biodiversity not just because it is a land border across North and South America, but because the topography is diverse and climate patterns move in from both Pacific and the Atlantic/Caribbean. Throughout the nation, there are stunning volcanoes, mountain ranges, rivers, lakes, and beaches. There are several gorgeous beaches; the majority of the popular ones are on the Pacific side, but the Caribbean also has many good beaches.

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Bird Watching

Bird watching is one of the most enjoyable pastimes for those who enjoy the outdoors. Many places in Costa Rica provide opportunities for bird watching. Costa Rica has a tremendous variety of birds, with over 800 species, due to the wide variation of climates, temperatures, and forest types. Many places have plastic cards featuring the most frequent birds, which are offered in gift stores.

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Costa Rica’s list of birds includes:
  • There are 16 parrot species, including the magnificent scarlet macaw.
  • Hummingbirds come about 50 different varieties.
  • There are ten kinds of trogons, with the brilliant quetzal serving as the crowning treasure.
  • There are six species of toucans, including the keel-billed and chestnut-mandibled toucans.
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  • Passerines, which include warblers, sparrows, and finches, account for half of Costa Rica’s bird species.
  • There are 16 different duck species, including the fulvous whistling, white-faced ruddy, and American wigeon.
  • There are 13 different types of falcons, including the peregrine falcon, merlin, and American kestrel.
  • There are 36 different types of predators, including the grey hawk, swallow-tailed kite, solitary eagle, and northern harrier.
  • There are six species of cracidae that resemble turkeys.
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  • There are eight new global quail species.
  • There are 15 rallideas species, including the rufous-necked wood-rail, American coot, and ruddy crake.
  • There are 19 different owl species, including the black-and-white, Costa Rican pygmy, Central American pygmy, and striped.
  • Potoos come in three varieties: great, northern, and common.
  • There are 16 species of woodpeckers, including cinnamon, chestnut-colored, and pale-billed woodpeckers.
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The Coastal list of birds includes:
  • There are 19 heron and wading bird species, including the great blue heron, great egret, boat-billed heron, reddish egret, and yellow-crowned night-heron.
  • Waders of the recurvirostridae family include the black-necked stilt and the American avocet.
  • There are two types of jacanas: northern and wattled.
  • The scolopacidae family has 34 species, including the short-billed dowitcher, spotted sandpiper, wandering tattler, surfbird, and red phalarope.
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  • There are nine gull species, including the grey, Heermann’s, and ring-billed.
  • The sternidae (terns) family has 14 species, including the gull-billed tern, Forster’s tern, least tern, and white tern.
  • There are four vulture species, including the king vulture.
  • There are 24 different types of doves and pigeons.
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  • There are 11 species of swifts, including the black, spot-fronted, and Costa Rican swifts.
  • Green, Amazon, and American pygmy kingfishers are among the six species of kingfishers.
  • There are five threskiornithidae species, including the roseate spoonbill and white-faced ibis.
  • The wood stork and jabiru are two ciconiidae species.
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Good Bird watching spots include:
  • The Monteverde Cloud Forest is home to over 400 bird species, including magnificent quetzals.
  • Tortuguero National Park is home to 300 different bird species.
  • Santa Rosa National Park is home to around 250 different bird species.
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  • Cahuita National Park is located near the seashore and is home to toucans, parrots, and rufous kingfishers.
  • La Selva Biological Station in the northern lowlands is home to 420 bird species.
  • Helconia Island is home to 228 different bird species.
  • Corcovado National Park is home to 400 different bird species, including 1,200 scarlet macaws.
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  • The shoreline and marshes of Huedal Nacional Terraba-Sierpe are home to a plethora of birds.
  • Carara National Park is home to 400 different bird species.
  • Tárcoles contains 400 bird species and excellent river cruises that emphasise crocodiles.
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  • There are frigate birds, boobies, ibises, and pelicans in Whale Marine National Park.
  • La Amistad National Park is home to 500 different bird species, including magnificent quetzals.
  • Manuel Antonio National Park is home to 350 different bird species as well as three beautiful beaches.
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Many hotels and tourist information centres will supply bird viewing guides, maps, and other bird watching necessities. If you’re an expert neotropical birder, going out with a professional birding guide can be a lot more effective.

Remember to bring a cap, rain gear, boots, binoculars, and a camera. In hot weather, an umbrella is more practical than a poncho or jacket. Southern Costa Rica is usually regarded as the superior location for bird viewing.

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Volcanoes

Costa Rica is among the most seismically active nations in the Western Hemisphere, and as a result, various volcanoes, most notably volcanoes Poas, Irazu, and Arenal, have sprung over the years.

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