Two weeks ago, we featured Shanna’s Costa Rican Top 5, but we would be amiss if we didn’t give this diverse country a Top 10. From ziplining by a volcano to chasing waterfalls, Costa Rica’s diversity is shown not only in its climate and wildlife, but also through its endless thrilling activities. This rainforested Central American country with coastlines on the Caribbean and Pacific is the perfect destination for animal lovers, adventure seekers, and those ultimately looking for enlightening cultural experiences.
Here are Shanna's top 5 activities.
Top 5 - Costan Rican Experiences
1. Sloth Quest (above)
Shanna always tries to incorporate ethical wildlife experiences into her travels and Costa Rica is the perfect place for that! Through our trusted supplier, she embarked on an adventure to search for two-toed and three-toed sloths around La Fortuna. Alongside an eagle-eyed naturalist, she spotted 9 total sloths and 2 babies in the treetops. Additional sightings included howler monkeys and multiple species of colorful birds including the motmot (below).
Fun fact: Surprisingly, sloths are strong swimmers.
2. Volcano Hike (above and below)
In case you missed the first Costa Rica ezine from 2 weeks ago, Shanna had a slight hiccup during her travels and broke her arm (luckily she was protected by travel insurance), but that didn’t stop her from pressing on. With two sturdy feet and some assistance, she traversed through rainforest and over the lava flow to a viewpoint of the Arenal Volcano. During this hike, her private guide told the tragic story of the eruption in 1968 which destroyed 232 square kilometers of land, led to the deaths of 87 people, and buried 3 small villages.
3. Coffee & Chocolate Tour (above and below)
Costa Rica’s diverse climate along with soil enriched by volcanic ash both provide ideal coffee growing soil. Shanna learned all about this world-renowned coffee through a private tour that began with a fascinating introduction to the life cycle of a coffee plant (harvest, drying, roasting, and grinding of the bean). After strolling through lush gardens of vanilla, banana, and cinnamon plants, the tour continued with an immersive chocolate experience. She tasted the cacao fruit, grinded her own cocoa beans, and made her own chocolate bar that she finished down with a Cup of Costa Rican Joe or José, whichever you prefer.
4. Waterfalls (above and below)
As a guest of the Peace Lodge, Shanna gained complimentary access to some of the most visited waterfalls in Costa Rica, La Paz Waterfall Gardens Nature Park. Located just 45 minutes from the San Jose Airport, it’s the perfect stop on the way to the Arenal area. As guests wander through 3.5 kilometers of cloud and rainforest walking trails, they’ll uncover 5 of the most scenic waterfalls the country has to offer. The nature park also features multiple exhibits including a wildlife sanctuary with jungle cats, an aviary, a butterfly observatory, and much more! Even if you are not staying at the Peace Lodge, you can visit for a self-guided or guided tour.
5. Ziplining (below)
The one thing Shanna unfortunately had to miss out on due to her broken arm was ziplining, but John can speak to this exhilarating activity. Ride an open air gondola to the top of the mountains where you’ll start your zipline course down. Cables stretch from mountain to mountain, reaching incredible lengths and heights, crossing canyons, going into the forests, and even sometimes in between clouds. Admire unique Arenal volcano views as you feel the adrenaline.
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I love travel and I love travel planning just as much and I am proud to be building a team as passionate about exploring the world as myself. It took me a very long time to align my career with my undeniable passion for exploring, but now I and the team are here for you. Your personal travel tailors - award reservation and luxury custom itinerary experts. We provide a bespoke service, imagining and creating itineraries for independent minded families and groups.
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