Tortuguero is one of the most lush and biodiverse places in Costa Rica. Although it is the largest nesting site in the country for green sea turtles, it is also home to three other species of turtle, along with countless birds, insects and reptiles. The area is also surrounded by lush banana plantations, which can make for an interesting day trip.
1) Visit the downtown area
Here you’ll find colorful buildings and loads of mom-and-pop souvenir shops selling handmade jewelry and other trinkets. Pop into a local restaurant to sample rondon (reservations required) and other regional delicacies.
2) Check out the Sea Turtle Conservancy museum
Discover how Dr. Archie Carr revolutionized the way the world looks at sea turtles. Here you’ll also learn a bit about the history of Tortuguero National Park and what makes it unique.
3) Go on a turtle tour
Tag along on a turtle patrol of Tortuguero’s long stretch of beach. If you’re lucky you can catch a nesting mother sea turtle in action.
4) Take a canal tour
Veteran guides will lead you on small boats through the mangroves, encountering creatures like blue herons, crocodiles and sloths en route.
5) Sport Fishing
Try your luck with rod and reel along Tortuguero’s ocean waters or freshwater canals. Tarpon, sailfish and blue marlin are the most exciting catches in the deep blue, as is rainbow bass in the estuary.