Take a Trip to Tortuguero
Tortuguero on the Caribbean Side of Costa Rica
Tortuguero is a small town with a population of approximately 1600, located on the northern Caribbean coast of Costa Rica close to the border of Nicaragua. Its name comes from its main attraction – the turtles (meaning of tortuga in Spanish) located on a small island, with the Atlantic Ocean on the one and the Laguna of Tortuguero on the other side. The town has no cars or streets in the city center contributing to its tranquility.
The only way to get to Tortuguero is by boat or plane. It will take some time to get to Tortuguero; either from Puerto Limón or San José, but the hours made by car, plane and boat is worth it. The boat from Puerto Limón navigates from port Moín, roughly a ride of 80 km or 3 1/2 hours through the big and small meandering canals, which run parallel to the Caribbean Sea.
The Main Attraction
Tortuguero National Park is an Amazon-like jungle of Tortuguero. The Tortuguero region covers a total of 190,000 square kilometers or 73,350 square miles.
This Park is one the country’s top ecotourism destinations for observing animals, birds and water creatures. There is something magical about Tortuguero’s remoteness, with its network of canals, lagoons and the dense rainforest. From March till October you can watch different species of sea turtles arriving at the beach for nesting.
There are several ways to see this unique park. Used a knowledgeable tour guide who uses traditional canoes or guided kayak tours. This way you will explore the waterways of Tortuguero silently and slowly so as not to miss the many animals that rests during the day in this lush paradise.
Like any other classic Caribbean place, Tortuguero is known for some unsteady weather and occasional rain all year long. Beside the river tours there are hikes that with a guide are also a way to discover more animals, birds and reptiles. When the levels of the rivers rise some portions of the trails can be quite muddy so it’s recommended to rent some rubber boots before embarking this adventure. You can rent them at the entrance of the park so bring some heavy socks.
The rain forest is constantly changing, every day is different.
Peak travel: March–October.
Climate: warm & tropical with lots of rainfall year-round.
Travelers stay typically stay 1–3 days.
Where to Stay