As we rode off into the sunset of the sabana in Costa Rica we ended part one of the best things to do and see in Costa Rica. In this edition we take to the water of the Tortuguero Canals and get up and close with one of the friendliest creatures on the planet, namely the really laid back sloth.
The most inaccessible area of the whole of Costa Rica is the northeast coast which is known as Tortuguero. And basically the whole area is a giant national park. Tortuguero is impossible to get to by car, and the only really valid transport is boat. You can walk along the marked trail on the beach, but this is mostly for those who want to observe the turtles. The best way to get around is on the water, and if you are really adventurous then you can rent a canoe or kayak to get into all the nooks and cranny’s.
Be prepared to see all manner of wildlife whilst paddling the Tortuguero Canals, you will see monkeys jumping through the trees, crocodiles and caimans floating in the water, and if you are lucky you will spy the sleepy sloths.
Get Up Close and Personal with Sloths
The wildlife superstar that everybody wants to see is the adorable sloth. Costa Rica is home to two species of sloths, the two and three fingered varieties. These most lovable of all furry creatures are strictly vegetarian and will eat all kinds of leafy vegetation. You may not notice the difference, but the two fingered sloth is actually quite a bit more active than its smaller cousins. Known as land creatures, sloths are really good swimmers so do not be surprised seeing them in the water if they lose their grip in the tree canopy.
The Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve
If you want to see beauty and biodiversity, then the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve is one of the few places in the world that will give you true beauty. There are actually an incredible six ecological zones within the Forest Reserve boundaries, and ninety percent of which are untouched virgin forest. It is a wondrous place that is really quite magical, and is a major attraction for ecologists and educational tourists who yearn to learn more about this complicated ecosystem. The Forest Reserve offer a plethora of study abroad educational programs as well.
Students can learn about the environment and the difficulties of economic and social challenges that are thrown up in such a diverse place. The area is dotted with small local villages that local families will be happy to open their doors as an overnight stop should you need it.
Costa Rica provides the tourist with so many opportunities to broaden their horizons. The wildlife and amazing landscapes stretch from forests to beaches, with many colorful towns and villages in between. Of course, if you wish to have some pampering there is always the capital San Jose, that has many five-star hotels and a great restaurant scene.