You’ve barely stepped away from the luggage carousel in San Jose, when you find yourself standing in a swirl of 4,000 or so butterflies. “This,” you say to the Silver Emperor that lands on your nose, “is why I came to Costa Rica.” The hyper-abundant biodiversity of Central America’s premier paradise never disappoints.
Wait. Let me qualify the word “never”. Because this land with more than 500,000 species of one kind or another, where the howler monkeys and toucans roam, can easily overwhelm. In a country that’s roughly the size of West Virginia, there are also more hotels than you can ever vet on Trip Advisor, and “naturalist” guides offering their services are thicker on the ground than Starbucks stores back home. Google “Costa Rica vacation”, and you get 62,800,000 hits. At some point, rich diversity turns into hyper-distraction. You can lose yourself in the logistics and spend your whole trip second-guessing yourself.
Instead, go with your instincts and let Classic Journeys handle everything. We’ve flitted the length and breadth of Costa Rica for two decades, comparing cloud forests, splash-testing whitewater outfitters, tracking capybaras, and curating itineraries that deliver exactly what you came for and more.
Instead of white-knuckling it in a rental car on a windy mountain road, you’ll be off walking on a platform suspended in the rainforest canopy or weaving through lava fields on the slopes of Arenal Volcano. While the do-it-yourselfers compete for the last ticket on a wildlife cruise, you’re already in your kayak gliding through a mangrove estuary, spotting anteaters and egrets. While a crowd huddles around a sign in Tortuguero National Park to read about endangered sea turtles, you’re off with your own local guide-naturalist who explains it all for you. (And takes you to the secret place where the turtles lay their eggs.)
In fact, our expert team of local guides makes up one of the rarest species in Costa Rica. They are native ticos, so they can give you a homier, insider sense of their country. You’ll be blown away by their encyclopedic knowledge about everything from sloths to scarlet macaw mating habits to stand up paddleboarding techniques. The best part is that your fulltime guide happily shoulders all of the when, where and how of your vacation. Almost like magic, they produce all of the gear you need for snorkeling on a Pacific reef or a zooming along a zip line – and you never pay an extra penny for any of it. And at the end of the day, when you are relaxing in a geothermal spa or sitting on your balcony overlooking the ocean, you never feel resort-envy because the hotel you booked online doesn’t live up to its photos. We’re also old friends with the best luxury boutique properties in the country. When you’re with Classic Journeys, there is always room at perfectly sited in-spots with an abundance of comfort and amenities.
Our approach works so well because every inch of the way, you’re in the moment—ready to make a cowabunga leap from your private catamaran, to absorb the sunset (and a margarita) from the deck of your lodge perched in the most spectacular jungle setting, or to freeze mid-step as a Violet Sabrewing hummingbird hovers a tongue-flick away. If you really want to spread your wings in Costa Rica, visit with Classic Journeys and float free through an amazing week crowded only with nature, fun, and luxury.