A day of fun awaits your family today as you depart the capital, San José, and make your way to Tortuguero National Park, a tropical paradise in the heart of the coastal rainforest and your first taste of Costa Rica's incredible biodiversity! En route, pay a visit to the Toucan Rescue Center, where you'll tour the facilities and meet some of the toucans, sloths, monkeys and other wildlife the center's staff cares for. Next, learn everything you ever wanted to know about one of our favorite food groups – chocolate – at an artisan chocolatier!
See the natural process of transforming the cacao fruit into chocolate during a hands-on demonstration, do a little tasting and have lunch. This afternoon, a boat transports you to your rustic rainforest retreat adjacent to Tortuguero National Park – where most travel is by water, toucans and blue morpho butterflies fly all around you, and howler monkeys provide a natural wake-up call! Enjoy dinner at your lodge this evening. Stay Two Nights: Aninga Lodge (B/L/D)
Wake up today in your rainforest lodge near the entrance to Tortuguero National Park, where 11 different habitats have been identified in the surrounding wilderness – providing homes to 60 kinds of mammals, 57 species of amphibians, 111 varieties of reptiles and more than 309 recorded species of birds! Your day begins with a morning canal cruise, where you'll do some birding and nature viewing with our local guides, then return to your lodge for lunch.
This afternoon, take a boat to explore the village of Tortuguero; learn about the medicinal benefits of coconuts, and the "tree of life" they come from, during a coconut demonstration; and, if you wish, take an optional canal cruise inside Tortuguero National Park, or just relax at your resort. And if you're traveling with us between July and August, this evening we'll take an unforgettable nighttime trip to the beach to observe nesting green sea turtles in one of the world's top nesting grounds for these endangered animals. You'll have a chance to see them make their way up the beach from the water to dig their nests in the sand, leaving tractor-tread trails behind them! (B/L/D)