Osa Peninsula

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Quite simply the best place to see wildlife in all of Costa Rica, the wild beauty of the Osa Peninsula is unmatched anywhere else in the country. This remote outcrop of land juts out into Pacific Ocean in the far south east of the country, and is blanketed in dense rainforest offering the most intense biodiversity in all Central America. The Corcovado National Park receives regular acclaim for the sheer number of bird and mammal species recorded here, but the fact is that almost the entire peninsula lends itself to wildlife watching, so limiting yourself to a stay close to the national park is not strictly necessary. Exploring the jungle throughout the peninsula provides opportunities to spot all four of Costa Rica’s species of monkey, two-toed sloths and other curious mammals such as anteaters and tayras. Reptiles and unusual insects abound, whilst bird lovers will also delight in the sight of scarlet macaws soaring above black-sand beaches or the opportunity to glimpse unusual species such as the black-cheeked Ant tanager, almost impossible to see anywhere else in Costa Rica.

Access to this isolated region can be challenging and inevitably comes with additional cost attached, but it is enormously rewarding. Upon arrival you will find a good range of eco lodges which operate on a full-board basis, each with their own expert naturalist guides. Many of these lodges are in coastal locations and although their wild beaches are generally unsuitable for swimming, it gives another dimension to a stay here. Some lodges on the western side of the peninsula also offer day excursions out to Caño Island, one of Costa Rica’s best destinations for snorkelling, as well as seasonal whale and dolphin watching cruises.

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