Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Fantastic Costa Rica

Costa Rica-a Country Filled with Beauty

I arrived in Costa Rica on March 21 and was transported to the Hotel Bougainvillea. After checking in, I went and spent the afternoon photographing the orchids and other tropical flowers in the expansive tropical gardens. I also observed a large number of new species of birds for me. I also met other members of my tour group.

View of the Garden

Tropical Kingbird

Rufous-naped Wren at Nest on a cactus

Enjoying the Gasrden

Rufous-necked Wren

Clay-colored Robin, this is the national bird of Costa Rica not so much for its looks but for its melodious songs

 The next morning after breakfast, we loaded the van and traveled to the Turrialba area in the Atlantic slopes of the Costa Rica's central volcanic mountain range and arrived at Rancho Naturalista. We spent the next three days there photographing the hummingbirds, utilizing a multiple-flash setup. We also photographed the scenics and other species of birds.

Green-breasted Mango female

White-neck Jacobin female

Volcano Terralba

White-neck Jacobin

We left Rancho Naturalista to travel to the higher cloud forests of the northern Central Volcanic Mountain Range, to arrive at Bosque de Paz where we will spend 3 days photographing the flowers, scenic’s, hummingbirds and animal life in the area.

Violet Sabrewing


One evening, we went looking for frogs and were able to find one and utilized our macro setups to photograph it. We were also able to photograph a number species of moths.

We again utilized multiple flash setups to photograph the hummingbirds.

On our seventh day we went to the nearby Toro waterfall, which is the highest waterfall in Costa Rica and offers many photographic opportunities to do scenic, panoramic and HDR photographs. We also were able to set up hummingbird setups in the restaurant to photograph the species of hummingbirds that occur at this lower level. We had all this and a great meal besides.

waterfall Toro

In the morning after breakfast and saying goodbye to hosts and staff at Bosque de Paz we traveled to the Arenal volcano area. On the way we stopped and did scenic’s of a mountain stream that is blue in color, secondary to silica colloids that are coming down from a nearby volcano.

At the Arenal volcano we stayed at the Arenal Observatory Lodge, which offered fantastic views of the mountain, however, the entire time we were there the top of the volcano was shrouded in clouds. A good number of species of birds were present and were able to be photographed.

The next morning, we again photographed the birds from the patio of the restaurant prior to proceeding full lunch and afternoon of photography at the snake zoo. I will discuss I photography at the snake zoo in a separate blog.

After breakfast, the next day, we again loaded the Van and started our trek back to San Jose. On the way we stopped at the Danaus Wildlife Reserve, we were able to photograph boat-billed herons and we were also lucky enough to see and photographed three-toed sloth.

We finished our day at the hotel Bougainvillea where after settling in, we met for a farewell dinner.

The next day after breakfast and for a few before breakfast we were transported to the airport for our flight home. A fantastic time was had by everyone, and new friendships were made.