Costa Rica: Jungles & Rainforests
Life is pretty colorful on a Costa Rica family vacation, where even butterflies like the electric-blue morpho make visitors gape in awe. More than 850 different species of birds make their homes here, from emerald-green parrots, scarlet macaws and bright-billed "flying banana" toucans to purple-throated hummingbirds, orange-bellied trogons, and red and green plumed quetzals. Green turtles and iguanas, red frogs and white-faced monkeys are also a big draw too, as you'll find out when you explore tropical rainforests and jungles on a rafting trip and a nature hike during overnight stays in riverfront lodges. Want to get the ultimate hands-on Costa Rica family vacation experience? Soar on a zip-line adventure through the rainforest, learn all about living along a jungle river, take a pineapple tour, and see – as well as taste – how the cacao fruit is transformed into chocolate. And the best part – share it all with your family on Costa Rica: Jungles & Rainforests.
San Jose (C.R.)
The sophisticated capital of Costa Rica, San Jose, has been endowed with a vibrant street life as well as a refined cultural life. You'll see contemporary structures of glass and steel, as well as colonial, Victorian, and classical architecture, exotic birds, giant butterflies, and picturesque scenery. Costa Rica offers some of the world's most thrilling sights to those who seek a new adventure.
The small village of Tortuguero (translated as "Region of Turtles") lies on the northeastern Caribbean coast of Costa Rica, approximately 50 miles north of the principal Port of Limon. The village is comprised of a variety of cultures: Hispanic, Miskito Indian (Nicaragua), and Afro-Caribbean. Both Spanish and Creole English are spoken. The region surrounding Tortuguero is called the Tortuguero Plain, which is a vast low lying area of little topographic relief still covered by a large expanse of tropical rainforest.
Here you can drive to the very edge of a volcanic crater, hike through the heart of a mountain jungle and explore a cherished rainforest in the same day. The Guanacaste region is a beach lover's paradise with its unforgettable white sand beaches and remarkable salt and pepper shores. Costa Rica has become a mecca for travelers seeking to immerse themselves in the beauty and peacefulness of nature. With more of its land protected in natural parks, biological preserves and wildlife sanctuaries than any other nation on earth, excursions are a must.
La Fortuna is near Costa Rica's active volcano, Volcan Arenal. Driving into the park, plumes of smoke belching out of the volcano become ominiously closer. Arenal has been nearly contastantly active and attracts visitors from around the world. Experiencing first hand nature's awesome power is a humbling sight. Take a night trip to the volcano and see bright red lava spew forth. Tabacon Resort Hot Springs, located in Arenal, featuring stunning views of Arenal Volcano and offering the pleasurable experience of bathing in the volcano's byproduct - hot springs. Constant energy of Arenal volcano, warmth of flowing thermo mineral rivers and surrounding tropical rain forest provide a supreme experience. Let the hot water of a spectacular waterfall massage your neck and shoulders. Enjoy a large main pool with a swim-up bar, or other smaller pools hidden in the gardens with built-in lounges, little waterfalls, and cozy tubs. Spend a steamy afternoon here, or head to Iskandria Spa for a volcanic body wrap, using a mixture of ash as a skin mask.
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