Corovado National Park, Costa Rica

Jul 10th, 2019, 03:15 PM
  #1  
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Corovado National Park, Costa Rica

My daughter and I plan to visit Osa Peninsula February 2020. We are nature lovers and are willing to rough it for the best nature scene. I am 66 years old and in good shape for hiking.
Our tentative itinerary is to fly into Puerto Jimenez from S.J., stay overnight in P.J. and rent a 4x4 vehicle. I am intrigued by the remoteness of La Leona Eco Lodge and its close proximity to the Corovado park entrance.
My other interest is Danta Corcovado Lodge. How are the 2 locations different in what we may see as far as wildlife. Is it worth going to both lodges? Does renting a 4X4 car make sense verses a taxi service. I believe it would $220 just in taxi's based on round trips to both lodges for 1 person. My earthy daughter wants to take colectivo cattle truck. I cannot imagine me sitting in that truck for 2 hours from P.J. to Carate. I saw a Youtube of a jeep going to Carate and it did not appear that the driving would be that difficult in an air conditioned vehicle. Is it worth staying more than one night in P.J.? Appreciate any input, thanks. Kathy in Colorado, USA
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Jul 11th, 2019, 12:26 PM
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Not the direct answer to your question, but years ago we stayed at Los Patos and Sirena ranger stations, so both sides of the peninsula. We saw basic wildlife at both: lots of howler and white-faced monkeys, a sloth, coatimundi, dart frogs, amazing birds and butterflies, snakes.

But the big stuff was at Sirena, including sea turtles, scarlet macaws, a tapir, and a jaguar (!). No guarantees of course.

Staying at Leona also gives you the ocean - rain forest interface, which is really dramatic. If you have a few nights then the pain of getting there will be amortized.

Good luck. Nelson in Colorado.
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Jul 11th, 2019, 05:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Nelson View Post
Not the direct answer to your question, but years ago we stayed at Los Patos and Sirena ranger stations, so both sides of the peninsula. We saw basic wildlife at both: lots of howler and white-faced monkeys, a sloth, coatimundi, dart frogs, amazing birds and butterflies, snakes.

But the big stuff was at Sirena, including sea turtles, scarlet macaws, a tapir, and a jaguar (!). No guarantees of course.

Staying at Leona also gives you the ocean - rain forest interface, which is really dramatic. If you have a few nights then the pain of getting there will be amortized.

Good luck. Nelson in Colorado.
Thank you for your input.
I think one lodge on west side is my choice. Now I am wondering how many nights we should stay. Possibly 4 nights but am open to advice.
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Jul 11th, 2019, 07:17 PM
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Number of nights is subjective but I think four is a very reasonable start.

This may not qualify as wildlife, but don't forget to look at things like army ants. Amazing. Also fungi.

Highly recommend reading Tropical Nature by Forsyth and Miyata before you go. Highly readable for the layperson and you'll really appreciate what you see when you are there.
Amazon Amazon
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Jul 12th, 2019, 08:05 AM
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We stayed at a spot called Bosque del Cabo; we saw all four species of monkeys just from the front porch of our cabin, sloths, toucans, scarlet macaws, even an anteater. The wildlife on the Osa is amazing - best we've ever seen.
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Jul 12th, 2019, 04:30 PM
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Originally Posted by volcanogirl View Post
We stayed at a spot called Bosque del Cabo; we saw all four species of monkeys just from the front porch of our cabin, sloths, toucans, scarlet macaws, even an anteater. The wildlife on the Osa is amazing - best we've ever seen.
I did look at Bosque del Cabo and it looks wonderful. I am also investigating Osa Bolo Adventures. Looked at their Facebook and many positive comments.
Have you heard of them?
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Jul 12th, 2019, 05:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Nelson View Post
Number of nights is subjective but I think four is a very reasonable start.

This may not qualify as wildlife, but don't forget to look at things like army ants. Amazing. Also fungi.

Highly recommend reading Tropical Nature by Forsyth and Miyata before you go. Highly readable for the layperson and you'll really appreciate what you see when you are there.
Amazon Amazon
I will get the book Tropical Nature. Thank you for spending time with me on this forum. It really helps me with pre-planning. Did you stay at Sirena Ranger Station dorms and for how many nights. I am a pretty private person but guess I could make myself sleep amongst a group of people. Is there a way to stay at La Leona Eco Lodge and get transportation to Sirena for 1 night. I think I read that it is 7 miles away. Doubt I would want to hike that in the hot sun. Did you fly into Sirena or take a boat from Drake Bay? Thank you again!
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Jul 12th, 2019, 08:04 PM
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You are quite welcome barminski.

However I can't answer your questions about getting to/from Sirena. We did a trip that I think is no longer possible. It circled the peninsula by hiking and a bit of kayaking with a guide. We arrived at Sirena after hiking across the peninsula from Los Patos Station. We departed by hiking up the beach to San Pedrillo. We spent two nights at Sirena but stayed in tents that they allowed you to erect in the building. None of which has any relevance to your trip whatsoever!

The jaguar encounter happened at 4:00 AM at Playa Corcovado. We were there at that hour to time the river crossings with the tide. The jaguar was feeding on a green sea turtle it had killed. A surreal experience.

Don't know how much time you have down in that corner of CR but another great place to visit is the Las Cruces Biological Station. It's at around 2,000 feet so totally different than Corcovado.
https://tropicalstudies.org/portfoli...rs-las-cruces/

But plenty of great places in Costa Rica that we never saw, but others here on Fodors have.

I think you'll enjoy Tropical Nature, we read it twice, once before each trip there.
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Jul 15th, 2019, 08:51 AM
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Nelson, lucky you with the jaguar sighting; that sounds incredible. Bosque del Cabo has had a few puma sightings on the property, but very rare and special.
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Jul 15th, 2019, 04:55 PM
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It was truly remarkable volcanogirl. Seeing his eyes in the beam of our flashlight, electrifying! He eventually approached us and I have photos taken from the camera’s small built-in flash.

A wildlife biologist we spoke with was humorously annoyed at us for having this encounter as tourists, and he’s never seen one.

Too bad it’s a rare event.
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Jul 16th, 2019, 08:47 AM
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Wow, I would love that - sounds amazing.
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Jul 16th, 2019, 11:41 AM
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I'll take the opportunity to show off a few pictures!


Jaguar at Playa Corcovado, 4:00 AM






Recently deceased green sea turtle






Jaguar tracks on the way to Rio Llorona




Crossing the Rio Llorona on a hastily constructed raft.

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Jul 17th, 2019, 04:12 AM
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Amazing photos that motivates one to be adventurous and rugged. Thank you for sharing.
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Jul 17th, 2019, 06:20 AM
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Oh my gosh, fantastic; thanks so much for sharing your pics. I'm so glad you got to have the experience, really once in a lifetime.
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