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Travel to the famous Osa Peninsula in Costa Rica and find yourself surrounded by wildlife as you take part in research in the Golfo Dulce. Gain valuable conservation skills as you learn from wildlife experts and gain hands on experience at sea turtle research projects.
Help catch and measure sea turtles, mainly the endangered hawksbill and green turtle. Between projects, take some time to relax on the beach, help restore mangroves or hike through the jungle.
You will be picked up at the San Jose Airport and taken to Francisco's, a family-owned lodge about 20 minutes away. Get a good night's sleep to rest up for the fast paced tr
After breakfast, you'll head to the South Pacific coast in a private vehicle (about a 5 hour drive). Along the way, you will stop for lunch and take in the beautiful views. After settling in to your cabins, researchers from our partner Latin American Sea Turtles (LAST) will give an orientation to the turtle research and train you in data collection techniques. This evening, relax and get a good night’s sleep. Overnight at Delfines de Golfo, a simple family lodge with electricity, private bath with hot water, and tv’s.
Today is all about sea turtles. Head out in a shaded boat with researchers to help set nets in key turtle spots (timing dependent on the tide). Once caught, researchers will bring them to the beach where you will have the opportunity to help carry in the turtles, measure them, weight them, and perhaps even tag them. You’ll be looking mainly for green turtles and hawksbills, which are both endangered. In between turtles, take a swim in the beautiful Golfo Dulce or explore the coastline to look for macaws and sloths.
This morning, you will participate in LAST's mangrove reforestation program by working in the nursery and planting young trees. Mangroves are critical for sea turtles and other ocean life and this area has lost much of its forests over the past few decades. We will also work in their small turtle rescue center if there are turtles present. In the afternoon, you'll learn about the origins of chocolate, which is native to this region. See a farm where cacao is grown and work through the process from seed to deliciousness. You'll also taste many other delicious fruits and learn how organic farming can help wildlife.
Today will be free to relax or to do an optional activity such as renting a sit-on-top kayak, doing ziplines through the forest, or going for a guided rainforest walk to learn about the incredible diversity of plants and animals in this beautiful part of the country.
Head out on the water again to look for more sea turtles to study and release. Since these turtles don't nest in the area (we're not sure where they nest), catching them in the water is the only way to learn about these turtles and ensure their health.
This morning, you’ll have one last chance to take a dip or explore the rainforest before returning to San Jose. You'll board the private vehicle for the 5 hour drive and stay at a comfortable small hotel near the airport. Dinner is on your own at a nearby restaurant.
Head out for the airport in time for your flight, taking along your memories, photos, souvenirs, and stories to tell friends!
4,586,353 (2011 census)
Equatorial, Monsoon, Tropical Savanna
Juan Santamaria Airport (SJO), Daniel Oduber Airport (LIR)
Tourism, Agriculture, Exports, Energy