Costa Rica Photo Expedition

Tim Mannakee's Group

November 2025

Status: Suggested itinerary

Expedition details

Gallery

Photo activities

All these photo activities and tours are included (Suggested activities)

While all these activities are included, they may be subject to change depending on the weather and other conditions. We consult with our local guides daily to pinpoint the most favorable situations and prime photography opportunities.

Daily itinerary

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Andy will be waiting for you at the airport, and we will take you to the hotel.

  • Arrival
  • Pick-up is at Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO).
  • Private transfer to Heredia city
  • Lodging in San Jose

After breakfast, we check out the hotel and head to one of the most beautiful areas of Costa Rica. On the way, we will visit Cartago, the ancient capital of the country.

In the afternoon, we will have a bird photography session. The area is known for its lush vegetation and abundance of wildlife, making it an ideal spot for bird photography. From the endemic Resplendent Quetzal to the colorful tanager and the tiny hummingbird, there’s something for everyone

  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Transfer to San Gerardo de Dota
  • Lunch at the hotel or at a local restaurant
  • Bird photo session in the afternoon
  • Lodging at Savegre Lodge or similar
  • Dinner at the hotel

Today we have two different sessions. In the morning, we will look for the Resplendent Quetzal. The Resplendent Quetzal is one of the most iconic birds of Costa Rica and the world. It is a species of trogon and is famous for its impressively colored plumage and long tail feathers. A bird photo shoot with this magnificent creature is a once in a lifetime experience.

After lunch, we have a hummingbird photo session. These little birds are truly a sight to behold. With their brightly colored feathers, they can be seen flitting from flower to flower, drinking nectar and foraging for food. They are so small and delicate that it almost looks like they could disappear in an instant. That is why a photo session with these incredible birds is so special.

  • Breakfast at the hotel
    Resplendent quetzal photo tour (Private tour)
  • Lunch at the hotel
  • Humminbird photo session (Private tour)
  • Lodging at Savegre Lodge or similar
    Dinner at the hotel

Today we continue our trip to the Sarapiqui area. We will pass through Braulio Carrillo, one of the most impressive national parks. In this session, we will be able to photograph the emerald toucan, the beautiful motmot, among others. The evergreen landscapes of the area will impress you.

  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Transfer to Braulio Carrillo area
  • Bird Photo session 
  • Transfer to Sarapiqui area.
  • Lodging in Sarapiqui area

Today we have two different sessions.

Morning: Bird photo session. (8:30)

During this session, we’ll have the opportunity to capture images of the vibrant emerald toucan, the stunning motmot, and various other species. The lush, verdant scenery of the region is sure to leave a lasting impression on you.

Afternoon: Snakes and Frogs photo session (14:00)

During our Snakes and Frogs macro session, you’ll have the opportunity for close-up encounters and photography with over five exotic and venomous species. This experience, conducted in a safe and controlled environment, allows you to capture the allure and danger of these enigmatic creatures. It’s an adventure designed for the daring and curious, keen to explore and document the wild’s mystique in vivid detail.

  • Breakfast at the hotel (Included)
  • Transfer to Guapiles area
  • Bird Photo session in Guapiles
  • Lunch at local restaurant
  • Snakes and Frogs photo session
  • Transfer to the hotel
  • Lodging in Sarapiqui area

In the morning, we will be able to take photos of the Savegre River, the exuberant vegetation of the property, and many birds and animals will come to have breakfast with us such as keel-billed toucans, great green macaws, wood thrushes, gray-necked wood rails, sun bitterns and violet crowned woodnymph. Then, we continue towards Boca Tapada. At night, and in the middle of darkness, we will have a spectacular bat photography session

  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Transfer to Boca Tapada area
  • Lunch at the hotel or at a local restaurant
  • Free afternoon
  • Bat photo session at night (private tour)
  • Dinner at the hotel
  • Lodging in Boca Tapada area

Morning (9:00 am)

After breakfast (8:00 am), we dedicate this photo session to the King Vulture. The King Vulture, notable for its vibrant coloration, is one of the largest New World vultures, growing up to 2.5 feet tall and weighing around 8 pounds. This bird possesses one of the strongest beaks among American vultures, enabling it to open carcasses that others can’t, often eating first at a feeding site.

Lunch at a local restaurant or at the hotel

Afternoon (14:00)

Humminbird or Green Macaw photo session

  • Breakfast at the hotel (Included)
  • King Vulture Photo Session
  • Lunch at a local restaurant or at the hotel
  • Humminbird Multiflash or Green Macaw photo session
  • Dinner at the hotel
  • Lodging in Boca Tapada area

Breakfast at the hotel at 7:00 am.

After check-out, we will drive for more than 2 hours to the impressive and remote area of Caño Negro.

We will have lunch on the road.

In the afternoon, we will have free time at the Cano Negro Lodge and its surrounding areas.

In the evening, we will have a night walk, which will last about 2 hours.

  • Breakfast at the hotel (Included)
  • Free afternoon
  • Night tour in Caño Negro
  • Dinner at the hotel
  • Lodging in Caño Negro

Breakfast is at the hotel at 8:00 a.m.

Tour by boat through the main attractions of the Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge. Search for wildlife, interpretation of the ecology and biodiversity of the wetland.

The Caño Negro Wetland is one of the most dynamic and biodiverse ecosystems in Costa Rica.

This tour will last approximately 3 hours.

After that, we will drive over 2 hours to the Cinchona area, near the Poas Volcano.

We will stop at a famous restaurant to have lunch and take lots of pictures… birds, 2 beautiful waterfalls: La Paz and San Fernando as well as beautiful landscapes of that zone.

Then, we will drive one more hour to the city of San Jose.

Check in at the hotel. Dinner at the hotel

  • Breakfast at the hotel (Included)
  • Photo session at the surrounding areas
  • Transfer Cinchona area
  • Bird photo session at the restaurant
  • Dinner at the hotel (Farewell dinner included)
  • Lodging in San Jose

After having shared this trip together and having lived through so many unique moments and experiences, we will take you to the airport. It’s time to go home!

  • Check-out
  • Transfer to Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO)
  • Departure flight
  • End of services

Stunning destinations

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San Gerardo de Dota

San Gerardo is a community bordering the Los Quetzales National Park located at 2,200 meters above sea level, hidden in the folds of the Río Savegre Valley.
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Sarapiqui

Sarapiqui in Costa Rica is a fantastic destination for nature photography, including bird photography, wildlife photography, and landscape photography. The region is known for its incredible biodiversity, lush rainforests, and stunning flora and fauna.
Costa Rica Photography Workshops by Physis

Boca Tapada

Boca Tapada, located in the lush northern region of Costa Rica, is a natural paradise for nature enthusiasts, photographers, and anyone seeking a peaceful retreat in the heart of nature.
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Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge

Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge is a protected area located in northern Costa Rica, near the border with Nicaragua. It is known for its rich biodiversity and is a popular destination for nature enthusiasts and birdwatchers

Expedition leader

I, Andy, will be right there with you as your expedition leader and tour guide. With years of experience and a profound love for the nature of Costa Rica, I am eager to share my knowledge, photography tips, and fascinating stories to enrich your adventure.

Together, we will make sure that your time here is not just a trip, but a journey filled with learning, discovery, and moments that will stay with you forever.

Andy is a proud member of NANPA, PPA, PSA and SINWP photography associations

Services & accommodations

What’s included

  • 10 days itinerary
  • 10 days
  • 9 nights
  • Private and exclusive group
  • Local professional photographer and expedition leader with years of experience
  • Experienced, certified, and area-specific guides for birds, wildlife, and nature photography
  • Specialized bird, nature, and wildlife guides by area
  • 9 nights of lodging
  • Physis’s certified hotels and lodges
  • Single standard rooms
  • Private bathroom
  • 9 breakfasts at the hotels
  • 8 lunches (on the road, tour destination, or hotel)
  • 6 dinners (at the hotels or selected local restaurants)
  • Welcome and get-together dinner
  • Farewell dinner

What’s not included

  • Airfare to/from Costa Rica
  • Lunches
  • Dinners
  • Visa (If it’s required)
  • Medical insurance
  • Travel Insurance
  • Tips and gratuities (local guides, driver, and expedition leader)
  • Alcoholic beverages (wine, beer, cocktails, etc) and beverages not included on the menu.
  • Hotel services (laundry, room service, etc)
  • Personal services (spa, massage, etc)

Suggested hotels and lodges

  • Hotel Bougainvillea
  • Hotel Savegre Lodge or Gema del Bosque
  • Selva Verde Lodge
  • Boca Tapada Lodge or Hotel Maquenque Lodge
  • Caño Negro Lodge

This price is per person traveling in a private group (Based on 8 photographers)

  • US$4.122 (Single room)


This price is an estimate and can change depending on the number of people, arrival and departure day, hotel availability any special requirements, etc

 

Physis – 2024