8 Wildlife Spotting Tips for the Costa Rica Rainforest

White-faced monkey at Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge in Costa Rica

The Costa Rica rainforest is full of wonders and wildlife – you just need to know how to look. The thrill of seeing a wild animal in its natural habitat, even if only for a moment, is unparalleled.

Costa Rica hosts more than 5% of the world’s biodiversity: 208 species of mammals, 870 kinds of birds, 1,250 kinds of butterflies and 8,000 different moths, 160 species of amphibians, 220 species of reptiles, and 34,000 types of insects. You’re certain to see something! Follow these tips to increase your chances of seeing wildlife in Costa Rica.
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Fun kayaking tours & vacations in Golfo Dulce Costa Rica

Kayaking on Golfo Dulce by Playa Nicuesa Lodge

At Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge, there are plenty of opportunities for kayaking in Golfo Dulce.

Kayaking in Costa Rica in the “sweet gulf” of Golfo Dulce by the Osa Peninsula – one of only four tropical fjords in the world – it is like paddling across a giant mirror to the sky. Close to shore, the clear water’s blues and grays turn to liquid jade, reflecting endless shades of green palm trees and jungle that crowd the water’s edge. Look down and you’ll probably see colorful fish swimming below your kayak. Dense green rainforest and mountains fill the horizon.
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Protecting the rainforest of the sea in Golfo Dulce Costa Rica

Interesting news has been happening recently at Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge in southern Costa Rica.

In an effort to help restore coral reefs in the Golfo Dulce, Nicuesa Lodge staff has been collaborating with the University of Costa Rica (UCR) and the National Institute of Learning (INA) on the study project: “Ecological regeneration of coral populations present in the South Pacific of Costa Rica.” Since June 2015, they have been creating coral reef “nurseries,” transplanting fragments of coral onto artificial structures to grow coral gardens.

Coral reef restoration Golfo Dulce Costa Rica

So far, according to Nicuesa Lodge Sustainability Coordinator, Natalia Solis, coral is successfully growing and they are planning to create another structure off the beach in the small bay by the Costa Rica eco-hotel.

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Playa Nicuesa Lodge, more than a exotic place

Coming from Canada, I can honestly tell you that I have never seen such an exotic place in the world as I have during my stay at Playa Nicuesa.  We all know that there are places on this earth with more wildlife, more forest, closer proximity to the ocean, but to see it and experience the beauty here first hand has been miraculous.  The Lodge is situated off the grid in the Golfo Dulce making you feel completely submerged in the ecosystem surrounded by hundreds of colourful and vibrant species.  There are 6 hiking trails on the property that venture into the rainforest.  One day you may see green and black poisonous dart frogs, toucans, different kinds of snakes and butterflies.   Doing the same path the next day you may come across crabs, squirrels, a swarm of army ants, white faced monkeys, a family of pizotis and wild pigs.  You are estonished with what you find each time and by spending quality time connecting to nature, you receive the healing benefits of mindfulness.  Enjoying the sacredness of the land is a gift in itself.  As a yoga teacher, creating a strong harmonious community is essential.  Viewing the food chain and “connecting the dots”, watching a pair of scarlet macaws snack on the almond trees beside the yoga deck or seeing a lizard run quickly across the pond, it is something to be experienced first hand.  Another gift from mother nature here is viewing the bioluminescence out by the pier at night, when the moon is not too bright, but the stars are still visible.  Even the water comes to life here.  I had the opportunity to go swimming in the bioluminescence and can tell you that it is the Pura Vida.  Pura Vida a common saying in Costa Rica which translates to pure life and that is exactly what Costa Rica and the Golfo Dulce offers.  The sounds of the tide, the rain and the frogs from the pond behind the yoga deck have made for the most tranquil spa and meditation music a yoga teacher could ask for.  I am grateful to have had the chance to stay here through the green season to unplug and it is as if I was on a personal retreat.  It definitely has not felt like work here and I cannot wait to return for another rotation next season!

Nicuesa Lodge celebrates art & culture of Costa Rica

Cultural festival at Nicuesa Lodge in Costa Rica
The art and culture of Costa Rica were celebrated recently by guests, staff and visitors at Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge. In honor of the national holiday, Annexation of Guanacaste Day on July 25, Nicuesa Lodge invited local artisans and a folkloric dance group to entertain hotel guests.

Cultural and art festivals are held at least twice a year at our Costa Rica eco-lodge to celebrate different events.

Boruca masks at Cultural festival at Nicuesa Lodge in Costa Rica
On this occasion, craft artisans and the Folkloric Dance Group Yuré from the town of Puerto Jimenez came across the Golfo Dulce by boat. Joining them was Ana Iris, a woman from the regional indigenous Boruca community, who brought traditional masks to show and sell. Made from lightweight balsa wood, the colorful, hand-carved masks beautifully depict Boruca legends and rainforest wildlife of the Osa Peninsula and Boruca indigenous lands.

Young dancers from the Dance Group Yuré performed various Costa Rican folkloric dances relating stories of coffee growers, fishermen, love, etc. “The dancers then invited our guests to dance the ‘Pavo’, or turkey dance. Everyone was very enthusiastic,” said Natalia Solis, Sustainability Coordinator at Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge.

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