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If you are due to travel shortly, we will be in touch to support and guide you in either postponing or cancelling your holiday, based on current Foreign Office advice and your insurance arrangements.
 
We hope that international travel will resume soon, but to ensure you can still enjoy a holiday this year, we have introduced the following new initiatives:
 
(a) For all new 2by2 Holidays we have relaxed our Booking Conditions, with refundable deposits & later final payment dates. This will allow you to plan your next long-haul holiday with more confidence, despite coronavirus uncertainties.
 
(b) We have launched Auriel Holidays – dedicated to finding you a range of wonderful holidays closer to home. Working with like-minded tour operators, who know their destinations intimately, safety is uppermost in everyone's minds. Our holidays within the United Kingdom and Europe will be mindful of this, and can be tailor made to your exact requirements - whether travelling by road, rail, sea or air.
 
After three months of hibernation, we are more than ready to start dreaming again!

Warm regards

Claire Farley, Managing Director

Tailor Made Birding Holiday, Costa Rica: Arenal + Sarapiqui + Quetzal + Antonio

Birding: Arenal + Caribbean + Highlands + Pacific
RRS14S
14 NIGHTS
FROM £3,095
Per person sharing
International flights quoted separately
Tailor Made Birding Holiday Costa Rica Arenal Sarapiqui Quetzal Antonio

This tailor made birding holiday visits Costa Rica, a small but beautiful country that is home to over 850 colourful tropical bird species. Visit the Arenal Volcano, Sarapiqui lowland rainforest, Turrialba cloud forest & San Gerardo de Dota in the central valley, home to the resplendent quetzal. Then enjoy birding at Manuel Antonio on the Pacific coast. All transfers & specified resort-based birding guides included.

Tailor Made Birding Holiday Costa Rica Arenal Sarapiqui Quetzal Antonio
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Tailor Made Birding Holiday
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Arenal Volcano
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Sarapiqui Rainforest
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Costa Rica Birds & Guides
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Turrialba Volcano
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Cloud Forest
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San Gerardo de Dota
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Resplendent Quetzal
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Manuel Antonio National Park
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Birding Holiday, Costa Rica
• 
Tailor Made Birding Holiday
• 
Arenal Volcano
• 
Sarapiqui Rainforest
• 
Costa Rica Birds & Guides
• 
Turrialba Volcano
• 
Cloud Forest
• 
San Gerardo de Dota
• 
Resplendent Quetzal
• 
Manuel Antonio National Park
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Birding Holiday, Costa Rica
Day 1
You will be met at San Jose Airport and transferred to this capital city in the Central Valley, surrounded by the Talamanca Mountains to the south and the volcanoes of Poas, Irazu and Turrialba.
 
Check into your hotel and relax in this modern city.
Day 2
Today transfer 3.5-hours from San Jose, travelling through beautiful Costa Rican scenery towards Arenal Volcano - one of the most active in Central America, with a perfect cone that on a clear day is visible from almost anywhere in the area.
 
Your route crosses a large cattle and agricultural area, where chocolate is grown. Cacao was very important in the ancient Mayan and Aztec civilizations and today it is enjoyed throughout the world.
 
Check into your hotel in La Fortuna, where you can relax surrounded by rainforests, waterfalls and thermal hot springs.
 
Note: Your driver will only speak Spanish.
Day 3
This morning enjoy a privately guided tour to the Arenal Hanging Bridges - a series of nine fixed and six suspension bridges, located in a natural corridor followed by migratory birds travelling between North and South America and offering wonderful views of the lake and volcano.
 
This 2-mile (3-km) trail will allow you to enjoy the great diversity of flora and fauna inside this mountainous zone, as well as outstanding bird watching. Keep an eye out for howler monkeys, sloths, anteaters, coati, racoons and other rainforest wildlife. Birds you can hope to see include the Yellow-throated toucan, Crested guan, Grey-headed chachalaca, Baltimore oriole, Clay-coloured thrush and Red-throated ant tanager, amongst others.
 
In the afternoon relax at the magnificent Tabacon Hot Springs, with its many natural waterfalls and pools, as well as a large swimming pool with swim-up bar. Dinner at the hot springs is included this evening.
 
Note: This trail is not suitable if you have a fear of heights. Wear comfortable walking shoes and bring binoculars & raingear. Also sun hat, sunscreen, insect repellent, swimwear and water shoes.
Day 4
Rise early today to enjoy a 2-hour private birding walk around La Fortuna with a guide from your lodge.
 
More than 500 different species (i.e. half of all the birds found in Costa Rica) have been recorded in and around Arenal National Park, whose diverse habitats include tropical lowland rainforest, pre-montane forest of the Caribbean foothills and agricultural pastures. Colourful birds you can hope to see include the Lovely cotinga, Black-crested coquette, Yellow-eared toucanet, Bare-necked umbrellabird, Emerald tanager, Great curassow, Thicket antpitta, Ornate hawk-eagle, Fasciated tiger heron and many, many more.
 
In the afternoon enjoy another 2-hour private birding walk.
 
Note: Wear comfortable walking shoes and bring binoculars, camera, jacket & raingear. Also sun hat, sunscreen & insect repellent.
Day 5
Today transfer 2-hours from La Fortuna to the lowland tropical rainforests of Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui.
 
These lush green forests have a huge diversity of indigenous tropical birds, flora and fauna. This region is also know for its banana plantations, adventure activities such as white water rafting and ‘turnos’ (outdoor festivals) - which include fairs, bull riding and cattle shows.
 
Note: Your driver will only speak Spanish.
Day 6
An early start today to enjoy a 2-hour private birding walk through the lush lowland rainforests of Sarapiqui, accompanied by a lodge guide.
 
More than 54% of all bird species found in Costa Rica can be seen in this region. We walk along the river bank and through primary and secondary forests in search of a variety of tanagers, honeycreepers, herons and much more. Some sought-after species include the highly endangered Great green macaw, Keel-billed toucan, Sunbittern, Snowy cotinga, White-fronted nunbird, Wood thrush, Grey-necked wood rail, Violet-crowned woodnymph and Black-crested coquette.
 
In the afternoon enjoy another 2-hour private birding walk.
 
Note: Wear rubber boots or closed shoes. Bring binoculars, camera, jacket & raingear. Also sun hat, sunscreen & insect repellent.
Day 7
This morning enjoy a relaxed boat ride down the Sarapiqui River. As we cruise down the river, be on the lookout for wildlife in the water and on the land, as it is possible to see monkeys, iguana, sloths, crocodiles, alligators, otters and a variety of bird life.
 
After returning to your lodge around midday, there is time for a siesta. Then in the late afternoon transfer to the Tirimbina Reserve. After an included dinner at the reserve, we set out on a guided night walk to see nocturnal species such as porcupines, frogs, possums and kinkajous (also called 'honey bears').
 
Note: Wear good walking shoes & take rain gear, insect repellent and a headlamp for the night walk, which has a maximum of 10 per guide.
Day 8
This morning we travel 3.5-hours from Sarapiqui to Turrialba in the cental valley region of Cartago - the gateway to Turrialba Volcano National Park.
 
After stopping for some birding along the way, we check into our hotel in this beautiful but lesser known region of Costa Rica.
Day 9
Rise early for a shared morning birding walk around Turrialba accompanied by a lodge guide.
 
With over 450 different species of birds having been recorded in this forest reserve, you will have many opportunities for excellent sightings - including hummingbirds, trogons, tucans, hawks, motmots, cuckoos, woodpeckers, migratory tanagers, collared redstarts and possibly the yellow throated brush finch.
 
In the afternoon enjoy another shared birding walk.
 
Note: Wear comfortable walking shoes and bring binoculars, camera, jacket & raingear. Also sun hat, sunscreen & insect repellent.
Day 10
This morning transfer 3-hours from Turrialba to San Gerardo de Doto, a small high-altitude community nestled in a pristine steeply walled mountain valley, high in the Talamanca Mountains at 7,200 ft (2,200 m).
 
The cloud forests of Los Quetzales National Park are filled with massive oaks and other native highland species and this is the best birding spot in the country for regional endemics, with more that 50 found in the central highlands of Savegre. This area is also part of the Los Santos Forest Reserve, a biological corridor for a large number of wildlife - some in danger of extinction. It is a haven for both bird watchers and walkers.
 
Note: Your driver will only speak Spanish.
Day 11
Rise early for a private morning birding walk with a guide from your lodge.
 
This region is famous for its large population of Resplendent Quetzal - a bird that is sacred to the indigenous people and is one of the most beautiful birds in the Americas. We start the day looking for this bird, but over 175 other birds have also been identified in this small town.
 
While seeing a quetzal will be our main goal, this valley is also an excellent place to see all the specialty birds of the region. Some of the regional highland endemics we are likely to see include the Highland tinamou, Red-tailed hawk, Black guan, Sulphur-winged parakeet, Ruddy treerunner, Silvery-fronted tapaculo, Sooty robin, Ruddy pigeon, Scintillant hummingbird, White-throated mountaingem, Purple-throated mountaingem and many other hummingbirds,  flycatchers, trogons, tanagers and sparrows.
 
In the afternoon enjoy another 2-hour private birding walk. As you are at a fairly high high altitude, remember to walk at a slow pace.
 
Note: Wear comfortable walking shoes and bring binoculars, camera, jacket & raingear. Also sun hat, sunscreen & insect repellent.
Day 12
Today transfer 3.5-hours to Manuel Antonio, a busy tourist town known for its sandy Pacific beaches surrounded by lush coastal rainforest.
 
Check into your hotel and relax in your verdant surroundings.
 
Note: Your driver will only speak Spanish.
Day 13
Rise early this morning to avoid the heat of the day for a 2-hour privately guided hike with a naturalist, through the tropical humid rainforest of Manuel Antonio National Park - the oldest and most visited national park in the country.
 
Situated on the Pacific Coast, this wildlife sanctuary consists of four protected white sandy beaches bordered by verdant tropical jungle. A series of boardwalks offer two main routes - either a direct 2-mile (3.2 km) hike to the main beach, or a longer 3.5-mile (5.6 km) circular hike that includes a second spectacular beach.
 
Over 100 mammals can be found here, as well as over 350 different bird species. You can hope to spot an adorable sloth - a tree-dwelling animal that sleeps for over 15 hours a day, whilst hanging from the branches of trees. The two-fingered sloth is largely nocturnal, so you are more likely to see the three-fingered sloth, although both species have excellent camouflage so can be hard to spot. These cute creatures move so slowly that algae grows on their fur. Look out for white-faced capuchins and cute squirrel monkeys and listen out for howler monkeys calling across the trees. You should see hermit crabs scurrying across the sands, halloween crabs (with their bright orange & black colouring) and may even see a bull frog, Jesus Christ lizard (the brown basilisk that 'walks on water'), helmet basilisk, black spiny-tailed iguana, green anole lizard, caiman, American crocodile, wish moth, wax-tail hopper, rainbow grasshopper or spectacular blue morph butterfly.
 
Birds you can hope to see include the Brown pelican flying in formation over the sea, Yellow-throated toucan, Tendin fruit bat, Long nosed bat, Mangrove hummingbird, Yellow-crowned night heron, Crowned woodnymph and Bananaquit, amongst many others.
 
At the end of your hike you will be given the opportunity to relax on the beach for about an hour, before returning to your hotel. Your afternoon is at leisure.
 
Note: Manuel Antonio Park is closed on a Monday. Wear swimwear, comfortable walking shoes, shorts & T-shirt, as it will be very hot & humid. Bring water, binoculars, raingear, sun hat, sunscreen, towel & insect repellent and expect this park to be very busy.
Day 14
Rise early to enjoy a half day of birding in the forests around Quepos with a naturalist guide.
 
These primary and secondary Pacific coastal rainforests are full of wildlife and home to over 250 different bird species. We hike through rural areas and along paths, cattle farms and unpaved roads as this is the best way to spot up to 70 different species in one day - such as the Black-mandibled (Yellow-throated) toucan, White-throated shrike-tanager, hummingbirds, birds of prey, seedeaters, thrushes, doves, trogons and many more.
 
Note: Wear comfortable walking shoes and bring binoculars, camera, jacket & raingear. Also sun hat, sunscreen & insect repellent.
Day 15
Transfer 3.5-hours to San Jose Airport for your flight home.
 
Note: Your driver will only speak Spanish.

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