Treasures of COSTA RICA!  
   Mar 7, 2019 - Mar 14, 2019
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Daily Itinerary:

March 7, 2019

Today we board our flight through Dallas to San Jose, Costa Rica arriving in the evening.  It’s cold back home, but sunny and warm where we are going.  We’ll transfer to the hotel where we’ll have dinner together and rest up for our adventure.  We have wonderful activities in store!  We stay at the Country Inn & Suites.  D

March 8                                  

After breakfast, our English Speaking tour guide will meet us at the hotel in order to take us to our next destination which is Monteverde.  The landscapes are beautiful and the three hour drive is relaxing and enjoyable (we make stops along the way).  Once we arrive at the hotel in Monteverde, we will have time to relax at the hotel before going out for our afternoon plans.  Our guide will take us to enjoy a visit to the Hanging Bridges. Enjoy a walk on the famed hanging bridges at Monteverde, a combination of suspension bridges and platforms built in the cloud forest treetops.  By having the opportunity to be next to the host trees you can experience, up-close, the amazing biodiversity and understand how the cloud forest truly depends on its environment. In addition to the fun of walking through the forest, the hanging bridges give you a special insight into how the forest functions.  You can walk as much or as little as you’d like.  If you like to walk – you’ll truly enjoy this.  If you prefer to only walk a little, you can enjoy what you wish from the platforms or bridges.  It is a phenomenal setting.  We then return to our hotel in Monteverde.  We stay at the Poco a Poco Hotel which is a lovely 4 star property.  B

March 9                                                          

During the morning, enjoy a half-day visit to the Biological Reserve of Monteverde.  Enjoy a nature tour through the renowned Monteverde Cloud Forest Preserve where a local professional naturalist will explain to us all the different macro/micro flora and fauna. We’ll visit the Golden Toad's unique habitat; see birds like the resplendent Quetzal (the most beautiful bird of the Americas), the Three-wattled Bell Bird, and the Black Faced Solitaire. Trees like Strangler Figs, avocados and cecropias. epiphytes like bromeliads, orchids and mosses and a wide array of insects, mammals and reptiles.  Relax in the late afternoon followed by a barbecue dinner included at the hotel.  B, D

March 10

After breakfast and check out of the hotel, our transportation and tour guide will be ready to take us to our next destination: the Central Pacific Coast. On the way to the beach, we will enjoy a boat tour at Tarcoles River. On the Central Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, along the Guacalillo Estuary and the Tárcoles River we will have the opportunity to see one of the largest colonies of crocodiles in Costa Rica and natural habitat for different species of shore, migratory and water birds.  The Jungle Crocodile boat tour along the river and mangrove will provide a broad understanding of the life and death of the Mangrove and its species. This Mangrove forest is one of the most important in the middle Pacific Coast for the conservation of the Scarlet Macaw. While endangered species such as the Mangrove Cuckoo, Mangrove Hummingbirds, Egrets and many Herons spend most of the day in the forest, they roost in the mangroves. And we’ll learn about crocodiles.  When adults, crocodiles have practically no other predator than humans. The last inventory along the River within the areas of Carara Biological Reserve gave a result of 180 to 240 crocodiles per mile of river, making this area the largest protected site for crocodiles in the Central Pacific coast and noticeably higher than crocodile densities in other areas. The Tárcoles River is one of the most important feeding sites for resident and migratory birds and a very important mating & refuge site for mammals and reptiles. It’s a fascinating place to visit.  After the boat tour, we will continue to the all inclusive resort hotel at the beach.   After check in at the hotel, leisure time to enjoy the area.  When we arrive at the hotel, our guide will give a brief chat about Puntarenas beach and the many activities the area has to offer.  We have three nights and two days to enjoy this beautiful all inclusive resort on the Pacific.  B, D

March 11th and 12th

Today you can enjoy this lovely resort.  Overlooking the Central Pacific Ocean and dark volcanic sands, the resort is an ideal place to say.  It’s nestled at the foot of a lush green hillside and close to many things to do.  During the two days here, you can just do your own thing at the resort or choose from various optional day trips to other places in the area. Unlimited food (from fruit smoothies to delicious buffets and everything in between) is included with your stay here along with three swimming pools, lush landscaped grounds, evening entertainment and more.  B, L, D both days

NOTE:  On March 12, there will be an optional day trip to see Manuel Antonio National Park.  It is about two hours away and is another exceptional place in this country.  We have a good chance to see a vast diversity of tropical plants and wildlife including the famous three-toed sloths and the white-faced Capuchin monkeys.  And hundreds of species of birds. Our walk will take us through the beauty into a secluded, white-sand beach where you can take a swim if you’d like.  Price for the optional excursion is $74 per person (requires some walking – but well worth it).  Those not interested in the excursion can enjoy another relaxing day at the resort.

March 13                                

After enjoying breakfast and checking out of the hotel, we’ll travel to the east to visit another Costa Rican treasure:  Poas Volcano National Park and La Paz Waterfall Gardens.  Located in the sunny and warm province of Alajuela, the impressive Poas volcano rises to 9000 feet.  The crater is surrounded by deep green cloud forest; rich in native species.  For those interested, there is a trail that takes the visitors through a forest to Botos Lake, a dormant crater filled with cold, emerald colored water. The Waterfall Gardens are comprised of over 70 acres of natural preserve to explore.  In addition, there is a Butterfly Observatory, Hummingbird Garden and of course 5 magnificent waterfalls which are a must for visitors of all ages.  During the visit we will walk along the Trail of the Falls that enables visitor to view, photograph and feel the power of five awesome waterfalls. Lunch is included at the gardens.  We’ll return to San Jose by about 4:30 PM.  Free evening tonight at our hotel.  For those interested, there will be an optional excursion to visit the LDS Temple in San Jose (transportation cost is not included).  B, L

March 14                                

We’ll have about 90 minutes this morning to enjoy some local shopping at the interesting “Central Market” (if flight schedule permits).  We then transfer to the airport for our midday flight back home.  B

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