Travel Photography Tour - Costa Rica

Colorful Birds, Astounding Biodiversity & Pura Vida feeling in Sunny Costa Rica!

Date

24.04. - 4.5.2020

Time

full days

Duration

11 days

Weekday

please see itinerary

Price

CHF 6450.00

Location

Costa Rica

Language

English

Group Size

6 - 8

Registration end: Feb. 14, 2020

Colorful Birds, Astounding Biodiversity and "Pura Vida" feeling in Sunny Costa Rica!

The biodiversity in Costa Rica is unrivalled in the Western Hemisphere. On this eleven-day photography tour you will be treated to some of Costa Rica's most remote and authentic shooting locations. We show you the wilder side of this tropical paradise while enjoying comfortable accommodations – chosen for their charm and truly inspiring locations.

SAN JOSE – BOCA TAPADA NAT'L PARK – TORTUGUERO NAT'L PARK – CERRO LAS VUELTAS RESERVE – SAN JOSÉ

Photo Tour Highlights

Dazzling variety of colorful birds, intriguing reptiles, audacious monkeys plus countless other jungle species and beautiful plants.

Canoe & boat access on peaceful lagoons teaming with life.

Comfortable accommodations at first-rate eco-lodges, chosen for their great locations and easy access to activities.

On-site field tips that prepare you for the specific challenges of jungle wildlife photography.

Impression Gallery

 

Photo Tour Overview

 

April 24th

Day 1  

Welcome to Costa Rica!

  • Private air-conditioned van transfer from San Jose International airport to your hotel.
  • Tour briefing with your guide and orientation overview of the journey.
  • Ask any questions you may have before the start of the trip.

April 25th

Day 2 

  • Photography stop for various colorful birds, butterlies, etc. in Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui.
  • Transfer to eco-lodge near Boco Tapada and explore the surroundings of this unique bird paradise.
  • Chance of photographing the great green macaw (endangered), scarlet macaw, toucans, oropendolas, honeycreepers, tanagers, euphonias, jacamars, (just to name a few)

April 26th

Day 3 

  • Private birdwatching tour on lodge's grounds with plenty of time for photography
  • Private trails and garden tour with various subjects (flora & fauna)
  • Use of lodge-owned canoes to access a beautiful private lagoon
  • Optional night photography tour and photography opportunity

April 27th

Day 4 

  • Special opportunity to photograph the King Vulture from a hidden photographer's blind

  • Unique opportunity to photograph several species of frogs at the same property

April 28th

Day 5

  • After breakfast we will depart towards the town of Guapiles, boarding a boat at La Pavona for a boat ride to our next lodge in the Tortuguero region

  • In the afternoon your guide will take you to a private trail where you will have the chance to observe and photograph some of the unique wildlife that lives there.

April 29th

Day 6 

  • Private morning boat tour through rainforest canals of Tortuguero National Park
  • Private afternoon boat tour through rainforest canals of Tortuguero National Park
  • Large diversity of bird species, monkeys, sloths, crocodiles, iguanas etc.
  • Unique lunch experience during our Tortuguero town visit

April 30th

Day 7 

  • Private Tortuguero National Park boat tours through rainforest canals in the morning.
  • Private Tortuguero National Park boat tours through rainforest canals in the afternoon.
  • Chance to photograph large diversity of bird species, monkeys, sloths, crocodiles, iguanas etc.

May 01st

Day 8 

  • Morning photography walk with your guide, taking some last pictures of the birds and other wildlife that are active in the morning
  • Private charter flight from Tortuguero to San Jose
  • Private land transfer from San Jose to Cerro de la Muerte, the last lodge location of the trip

May 02nd

Day 9 

  • Today you will explore different trails and properties to (hopefully) observe and photography the beautiful Resplendent Quetzal which is found in this area almost all year long. 

May 03th

Day 10 

  • Private land transfer from your hotel to San Jose International Airport for your international flight home.
  • Check in 3 hours prior to your scheduled flight time. 

May 04th

Day 11 

Welcome home!

  • Arrival at your local international airport.

PHOTO TOUR OBJECTIVES

  • Small group ensures enough attention for each participant.
  • Profesional photographer & personal tour guide throughout the tour.
  • Feedback on your images plus editing tips in Adobe Lightroom.

EXPERIENCE LEVEL

Open to all skill levels. Foundational photography skills, such as those covered in our popular 1-2-3 Digital Photography Workshop  are strongly recommended for this photo tour.

PROFESSIONAL GUIDES & SUSTAINABLE ECO-LODGES

You will enjoy three high-standard Eco-Lodges which have been hand-picked by Dagmar and Matt for their excellent geographic locations, great service and quality cuisine. For the duration of our tour you will have a professionally certified naturalist guide and experienced wildlife photographer to share a wealth of interesting facts about the flora, fauna and culture of Costa Rica — including valuable photography tips.

 

EQUIPMENT

  • Wide angle lens (zoom or fixed), e.g. the 24mm 16-35mm range.
  • Medium length lens (zoom or fixed) e.g. a 50mm or 24-70mm range.
  • Long lens (min. 200mm, but preferrably up to 400mm), e.g. 100-400mm zoom.
  • Sturdy tripod. If you don't already own a sturdy tripod, you could read this blog post that we published on the topic.
  • Backpack (rather than a shoulder bag) with room for photo gear, a water bottle and a few other sundries or accessories which you may be carrying.
  • Registered participants will receive a full packing list and complete tour itinerary two months before the tour dates.

ACTIVITIES & PHOTOGRAPHY LESSONS

Photographer and certified naturalist, Alex Arias will provide you with photography tips in the various shooting situations you'll encounter on this tour. He will also share his editing and retouching knowledge in the evenings, helping you achieve the very best end-result from your images.

One of the greatest attributes of our three eco-lodge basecamps is the great variety of exciting day-tours which can be undertaken directly from their properties, (in most cases by foot or by boat) minimizing transfer times and maximizing your photographic opportunities.

Tour Leader / Instructor

ALEX ARIAS

Alex's love for the outdoors and photography eventually got him into nature photography. As a certified naturalist for more than 15 years, he has been introducing guests to the nature of his homeland, Costa Rica. He helps them achieve the best possible nature photos and have wonderful experiences during their travel adventures. Alex has photographed countless animal and bird species across all corners of Costa Rica (and beyond) and he enjoys sharing his expertise and enthusiasm with his guests. His goal has always been to send his guests home with a different perspective, after having a unique experience while capturing some of their all-time best photographs along the way.

Price & Photo Tour Information

CHF 6450.- (for single room accommodation*)

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE

  • Direct flight from Zurich to San José.
  • One light aircraft flight in Costa Rica.
  • All private ground and private boat transportation.
  • All hotel breakfasts, planned lunch stops and dinners. (Except dinner on arrival day).
  • Photography field tips, personal camera assistance and Adobe Lightroom support from Alex Arias.
  • Certified and private naturalist guide during the entire tour.
  • Free travel guide book for participants.
  • All park entrance fees, planned tour fees, tipping fees (such as rooms service, porters, guides, etc.) and airport taxes.

NOT INCLUDED IN THE PRICE

  • International flights to/from Zurich to make the connecting flight to San José.
  • Beverages, with or without alcohol and special snacks ordered between meals. First dinner on day of arrival.
  • Additional transfers, excursions or boat rides which are not planned in the itinerary.
  • Any visa fees (if applicable), travel & cancellation insurances, immunizations, or other unforeseen travel or cancelation costs.

A 30% deposit is required to register.

*A price reduction of CHF 300.- is offered for shared-room accommodation. Shared accommodation is only available if the room can be shared with another participant. If a suitable room-sharing partner cannot be appointed, the single accommodation rate applies. A further CHF 800.- price reduction is offered for self-arranged international flights to San Jose airport.

FURTHER DETAILS

  • A complete tour itinerary (including names of all accommodations) will be provided to registered participants two months before the tour's start date.
  • Temperatures and weather in April, can range from 18º to 33º Celcius and it tends to be less windy and less humid. The climate varies as one travels between the highland rain forests regions and tropical locations closer to the coast. 
  • A complete packing list for the tour is provided, including clothing recommendations as well as camera equipment suggestions.
  • This tour involves some easy walking. Participants are always welcome to opt for a more restful day, taking advantage of great photo opportunities closer to the accommodation.
  • Participants should be equipped with sturdy walking shoes, rain clothing and a backpack for carrying camera gear, personal items, a water bottle, sun lotion, etc.

Guest Testimonials

Just completed the 10 day Viewfinder trip to Costa Rica! The trip ran like a Swiss watch, and the opportunities for great photography were mind boggling! Both Matt and Dagmar provide great instruction, and look after you with enthusiasm. Highly recommended!!!
Tim L.
Out of 10 I'd give the Costa Rica trip a 12! Excellent support from both Viewfinder and the Costa Rica tour guides. Everyone was willing to do anything for anyone that would improve any situation. You couldn't ask for more.
Christine W.
Costa Rica was more than I was expecting, I enjoyed the time with the group and I am satisfied that I learned something new in photography of wild life. Sure that I would like to have another experience with Viewfinder Center.
Stefano N.