Hola! I’m back from b-e-a-utiful Costa Rica, where I did a 2 week tour around the country with Intrepid Travel. Where the beaches are clean, the wildlife is around every corner, the rain forests are vast (and wet!) and the locals are friendly.
I’ve wanted to visit Costa Rica for years but I didn’t feel confident enough yet to tackle the Central or South America. I also have anxiety so I wanted to ensure that when I go, my trip would be as stress free as possible and filled with everything Costa Rica has to offer.
There are so many activities, wildlife spotting and beautiful places in Costa Rica which made me want to go to this fascinating country. A lot of them are on my bucket list so I would get quite a few things ticked off my list in one trip.
What amazing activities can you do in Costa Rica and how many did I tick off my list?:
Zip lining through the clouds
I’ve previously ticked off Zip lining on my bucket list….BUT NOT LIKE THIS! In Monteverde, there is a zip line which not only has the longest zip line in Costa Rica but also has a two Superman lines and a Tarzan Swing!
The Superman lines are when you basically fly through the air without having to hold onto any lines and for the Tarzan Swing you fall from a platform a swing back and forth.
I was terrified and I thought I wouldn’t do the Tarzan Swing. It actually took my 8 minutes to do it but I’m so glad I did. What a rush!
If you’ve done zip lining before, don’t pass up this opportunity.
Helping baby turtles to the ocean
This has been on my list for a really long time. We were on the Tortuguero beach for nearly 2 hours and thought we’d missed our chance before we caught this magical moment.
Tortuguero is home of Green Turtles. They’re massive! We were lucky enough to see a Giant Green turtle bigger than me laying 70-80 eggs on the beach.
She dug a massive whole, laid eggs, covered it back up and then went back out to sea, all within an hour. What a girl!
The baby turtles hatched from a different set of eggs. They hatch at night in Tortuguero to avoid predators and follow the moon light to the water. However, the moon was on the wrong side so the locals help the turtles to the ocean using lights.
We shone a torch in front the new born turtles and led them with the light to the ocean. Some were faster than others so it took about 15 minutes from the nest to get them to the water. Incredible experience!
Hiking next to a volcano
Within the Arenal Volcano National Park, you can take a hike next to this giant active Volcano. There have been eruptions and lava flows since 1968, but the park at this present day is safe to walk through.
The hike isn’t very long but is uphill. Part of the trail is black fossilized lava rocks which is fascinating to see.
The top of the Volcano is typically covered with clouds and only in good weather conditions can you see the whole Volcano in all it’s glory.
Learn to surf
I spent the majority of my life avoiding open ocean due to a near drowning incident. Only recently I faced my fear and now I LOVE being in the water again. One of the main reasons for this bravery was so I could finally tick off all the water based activities on my bucket list.
One of those bucket list items was surfing, Dudes!
I paid for a lesson at Manuel Antonio beach for a 2 hour lesson. 30 minutes was spent on the beach practicing how to stand up on the board and the rest was in the ocean catching waves. Surfs up!
Walking over hanging bridges
This is a must do in Costa Rica. You can’t visit La Fortuna without checking out the hanging bridges in Arenal Volcano National Park.
The park has 10 regular bridges and 6 hanging bridge. The tallest is approx 148 feet but it’s not as scary as you think. Everyone was in awe of the rain forest or the wildlife around them before even thinking about high up they were.
During the walk through the park, we also spotted monkeys, a sloth, a tarantula, a tree frog, a snake and a lot of beautiful birds. The hanging bridges isn’t the only thing you’ll see at the National Park. Worth the visit.
Wildlife Canoe tour
Firstly, it’s not a canoe really. More of a boat. You have the option of a boat with an engine or without and taking oars. We opted for the oars rather than the engine, as they can sometimes hurt the marine animals and can scare them away.
You don’t have to row. The tour guide does most of the paddling and gives out a few oars. There were about 7 of us in each boat.
We took this trip in Tortuguero, first thing in the morning. The local guides took us into the park by boat through all the rivers.
The parks biggest wildlife spotting are Tapirs, Jaguars and manatees if you’re lucky to spot them. If not, the rain forest is still bursting with other wildlife like, Howler Monkeys, Spider Monkeys, Iguanas and Toucans.
Incredible sunset beach walks
I love a good sunset and golden hour happens to be my favourite time of day. Luckily, Costa Rica also seems to appreciate this too.
There are many places to enjoy a decent sunset in Costa Rica. My favourite two spots would be any of the amazing bars or restaurants along the river in Tortuguero and Manuel Antonio beach.
Making friends with a sloth
The grand finale! No visit to Costa Rica would be complete without bumping into the star from Zootopia aka my spirit animal.
Sloths sleep 15-18 times a day so you’re more likely to see one in the trees having a nap. However, we were very luckily to find one casually crossing the road before getting a helping hand to the other side by a local. Ultimate traffic stopper.
We also saw sloths in the national parks and casually crossing a telephone wire. There’s lots of chances to spot them.
Just look how cute they are….
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WHICH OF THESE ACTIVITIES ARE ON YOUR BUCKET LIST? LET ME KNOW IN THE COMMENTS.