Costa Rica

Back in March of 2021, I set off on a 10 day trip to Costa Rica, 6 days on the Osa Peninsula, and 4 days in La Fortuna.  My goal was to see as much wildlife as possible, and hopefully photograph as much of it as possible.  The Osa Peninsula has been described as the most biologically intense place on earth, and the concentration of wildlife is simply amazing.  

Day 1 started off with taking a boat ride up the Sierpe River, and observing the different wildlife along the banks and in the river itself.  All kinds of birdlife, reptiles, mammals and other animals were encountered. 

Some of the highlights include a Yellow Crowned Night Heron, Boat-billed Heron, Snowy Egret, Green Iguana, Spectacled Caiman, Blue Heron, and more.

Not to mention this master of camouflage, the Common Potoo (above), who with its tree-like coloring and ability to perch motionless for hours, will mimic the angle and shape of the branch it is trying to disguise as.

The side of the river was a great place to spot troops of the endangered Central American Squirrel Monkeys.  

 

After the Sierpe River boat trip, I headed to the La Perica Bird Garden, which is an area known to be favorited by sloths, as well as an abundance of other wildlife.  

 

The following 3 days would be dedicated to Corcovado National Park, which is the main reason I was attracted to visit the Osa Peninsula in the first place.  At 424 square kilometers, it is the largest park in Costa Rica, covering about an entire third of the Osa Peninsula.  The Sirena Ranger Station (below) is the only option for staying inside of the park, and consists of open bunk beds in a shared, hostel-like facility. 

 

While additional photos of the animals I encountered can be found in both the standard and extended versions of my photo album, here are a few samples of some of my photo highlights. 

 

My personal favorite is a photo of this mother and juvenile Tapirs.  They had been lying down in the same position for about 45 minutes after I had arrived, and the baby got up for a brief moment to change positions, only to lay back down for who knows how long.  

 

After having to leave Corcovado, I spent the next day relaxing relaxing and enjoying the beautiful beaches and natural environments of Matapalo.

 

After getting a good day of rest in, I was off on a nighttime river hike, looking for nocturnal wildlife in the rain forest.  Our walk took place following the water, under the log in the picture below.

 

My last day on the Osa Peninsula was spent exploring different sections of the rainforest in the Matapalo area, looking for wildlife. 

My personal favorite photo from that day would be this Smooth billed ani sitting on a fence post.

 

After flying to San José, and then driving to La Fortuna, I spent the next 3 days at the La Fortuna Waterfall, Mistico Hanging Bridges Park, the Arenal Observatory, and other various stops along the way.  

The sky was consistently full of clouds the first 2 days of my visit to La Fortuna, completely obstructing the view of the massive Arenal Volcano, which is normally dominating the view of anywhere in the surrounding towns. 

But finally, on my last morning before heading to the airport, the sky cleared just enough to finally show off the volcano, albeit with a cloudy cap.

 

To see the album version of this photo post, click here.

To see the extended version of this photo album, in a longer visual-only format, click here.

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