Costa Rica | Birding and More by Camera

Costa Rica | Birding and More by Camera

About this trip

For birders and photographers alike, the incredible avifauna of Costa Rica is certain to inspire. Accompanied by nature photography expert Krisztina Scheeff, you’ll have the opportunity to receive personal instruction during field exploration, for all levels of experience and interest. Together with your camera, journey across a diverse range of ecosystems and elevations to spot some of the hundreds of bird species that call Costa Rica home: the Caribbean coastal waterways, the lowland forest of the Sarapiquí Valley, and the cloud forests of the Talamanca Mountain Range. Experience all that Costa Rica birding has to offer, with a chance to bring your photography to the next level!

Highlights

  • Sharpen your photography skills in both the classroom and the field with guidance from photography expert Krisztina Scheeff.
  • Explore the canals of Tortuguero National Park for opportunities to photograph its abundant wildlife, like birds, monkeys, iguanas, and caiman.
  • Journey through the world-renowned La Selva Biological Station to photograph some of the 400-plus bird species found here.
  • Get more experience with ISO, shutter speed, and aperture as you photograph fast-moving hummingbirds zipping around feeders.
  • Seek out the coveted Resplendent Quetzal, plus other high-elevation species in the cloud forests of the Cordillera de Talamanca.

Meet your leader

Krisztina Scheeff, Photographer / Guide / Owner, KS Nature Photography

Krisztina has been photographing the natural world, with an emphasis on wildlife, birds and landscapes, since the age of 18. She has been published in Wild Planet Photo Magazine, Audubon papers, and won awards from National Audubon Society and local organizations. She has had numerous art exhibits and is a workshop leader every year at the San Diego Bird Festival run by San Diego Audubon Society. Her enthusiasm and passion for wildlife photography rubs off on everyone who meets her. 

"Photography is an adventure, just like life itself. Come join me on this journey exploring the beautiful world of wildlife and landscapes!"

ksnaturephotography.com

San José

Dec 4, 2022

Upon arrival San José meet with your driver and guide and transfer to the hotel. This afternoon enjoy time on your own to photograph the famous gardens at Hotel Bougainvillea. Before dinner is an orientation to the program by Krisztina Scheef. There is no specific arrival time required, however, if you wish to participate in dinner we suggest an early afternoon arrival. If you would like a pre-hotel night, arrangements can be made for an additional cost.

Dinner included
Overnight at Hotel Bougainvillea

Tortuguero

Dec 5, 2022

Take up your camera for early morning photography around the gardens at Hotel Bougainvillea. Then, after breakfast, head to Tortuguero, on Costa Rica's Caribbean coast. Upon arrival at the dock, set out on the boat trip along Tortuguero's canal system - the only way to access this seaside town. Check in at Evergreen Lodge, enjoy lunch and settle into your room. This afternoon embark on a boat for a photo safari through Tortuguero National Park. Although Tortuguero National Park is most notable for its sea turtle nesting sites and conservation efforts, its tree-lined waterways still offer ample opportunities for wildlife photography of birds, monkeys, sloths, river turtles, iguanas, and caiman.

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included
Overnight at Evergreen Lodge

Tortuguero

Dec 6, 2022

Today, continue exploring Tortuguero's canals by boat in the morning and afternoon, to photograph in different lighting conditions. Free time will be available to photograph the lodge grounds on your own.

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included
Overnight at Evergreen Lodge

Tortuguero

Dec 7, 2022

Today, continue exploring Tortuguero's canals by boat in the morning and afternoon, for more photography opportunities and wildlife observation. Explore the lodge grounds for photography on your own.

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included
Overnight at Evergreen Lodge

Sarapiquí

Dec 8, 2022

Enjoy one last photography session around Evergreen Lodge. Then, after breakfast, take the boat ride back to the dock, and travel to Sarapiquí by bus, stopping for lunch along the way. Arrive at Selva Verde Lodge & Rainforest Reserve in the Caribbean lowlands, at elevations ranging from 180 to 220 feet. Founded by the Holbrook family in 1985 on a tract of old growth forest once destined for logging, Selva Verde is renowned for its commitment to ecological preservation and sustainability. Enjoy afternoon photography around the lodge looking for iguanas, frogs, birds, and local flora. After dinner enjoy a guided hike on the lodge trails looking for nocturnal species.

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included
Overnight at Selva Verde Lodge and Rainforest Reserve

Sarapiquí

Dec 9, 2022

After an early breakfast, depart for the world-famous Organization for Tropical Studies La Selva Biological Station for a birding hike and photography amid its tropical wet forests. La Selva consists of approximately 2,500 acres of land, over 90 percent of which is virgin forest. The area averages over 13 feet of rainfall each year, making it a prime spot to observe water birds. Over half of Costa Rica's recorded bird species have been spotted at La Selva, including the Bare-necked Umbrellabird, Red-capped Manakin, Great Antshrike, Chestnut-backed Antbird, Slaty-tailed Trogon, Striped Cuckoo, Slaty Spinetail, Yellow-tailed Oriole, and Rufous-tailed Jacamar. Return to Selva Verde Lodge for lunch, then return to La Selva Biological Station for more birding and photography opportunities. After dinner, take another optional guided nocturnal hike around the lodge.

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included
Overnight at Selva Verde Lodge and Rainforest Reserve

Sarapiquí

Dec 10, 2022

Spend the day at Selva Verde Lodge, exploring the trails and botanical garden for local flora and fauna. Selva Verde's private reserve is home to a large assortment of avian life, including several types of herons, egrets, hawks, falcons, macaws, hummingbirds, flycatchers, warblers, sparrows and tanagers. Specific species often spotted at Selva Verde include the Keel-billed Toucan, Sunbittern, Crimson Tanager, Wood Thrush, Violet-crowned Woodnymph, and Grey-necked Wood-Rail. Selva Verde is also home to the endangered Great Green Macaw, which can occasionally be found feeding on the giant fruiting almond trees in the rainforest.

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included
Overnight at Selva Verde Lodge and Rainforest Reserve

Savegre

Dec 11, 2022

Take the chance to have one more early morning birding photography session on the Selva Verde grounds. Then, after breakfast, head for the Talamanca mountains and Savegre, stopping for lunch en route. After check-in at Savegre Hotel Natural Reserve and Spa, enjoy afternoon birding at the lodge before dinner. Take some time to visit the hummingbird feeders in front of reception and off the balcony at the lounge. The feeders are often active with resident Magnificent Hummingbird, Green Violetear, Gray-tailed Mountain gem, Volcano Hummingbird, and tiny Scintillant Hummingbird. Explore the trails looking for the Resplendent Quetzal with your guide.

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included
Overnight at Savegre Hotel Natural Reserve and Spa

Savegre

Dec 12, 2022

Savegre is located in a small community in the Talamanca Mountains and houses its own private biological reserve. This high-elevation habitat of mostly oak and highland cloud forest is rich with insects, mammals, amphibians, and a huge variety of avifauna - 170-plus bird species. The large centennial oaks that cover the forest are laden with lichens and mosses that contrast with the colorful bromeliads. Spend the morning exploring the property's trails, which wind through mostly virgin forest consisting of hundred-year-old trees, multicolored plants, mushrooms, insects, amphibians, and mammals. Altitudes vary from 7,220 to 11,384 feet. Savegre is a paradise for birders and is known as one of the best places in the country to observe the Resplendent Quetzal. Other species that can be seen here include Spotted Wood-Quail, Costa Rican Pygmy-Owl, Collared Trogon, Buffy Tuftedcheek, Ruddy Treerunner, Ochraceous Pewee, Barred Becard, Zeledonia, and Golden-browed Chlorophonia. During your stay you will also enjoy ample opportunities to practice hummingbird photography. In the afternoon visit Miriam's for bird photography.

Breakfast-Lunch-Dinner included
Overnight at Savegre Hotel Natural Reserve and Spa

San José

Dec 13, 2022

This morning you will be transferred to the international airport for your flight home. Flights should depart no earlier than 2:00 p.m.

Breakfast- included