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La Selva Wildlife Refuge & Zoo

Road behind Hotel Esperanza, Playa Carrillo, Costa Rica
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Attraction details
Owner description: In this piece of paradise you will meet the Amazing Costa Rican Fauna (over 40 animals)surrounded by a tropical garden. In a friendly atmosphere, the owners will introduce you to a wonderful word of local animals.Most the animals are for reabilitation, breeding and for future releaseinto the wild.
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25 reviews from our community

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English first
Calgary, Canada
3 reviews 3 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2014

My husband, 2 year old daughter and I went to visit this refuge one hot sunny morning. It cost 20$ per adult and 15$ for children (but she didn't charge us for our daughter). It was amazing to see local animals up close and personal. The cages are clean and the animals seem very well cared for. The lady who... More

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Dorchester, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
9 attraction reviews
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 12, 2014

Tour of La Selva, Organisation for Tropical Studies – 5 out of 5. This is an amazing place – crested guans and collared peccaries strolling among the research buildings and fantastically biodiverse forest. We had a brilliant guide whose natural history knowledge (and ability to mimic the birds) was top notch. We were also fascinated to learn more about the... More

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New Mexico
12 reviews 12 reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2014

The owners are doing the best they can with limited resources. There is a large selection of creatures, most of whom need larger accommodations and some of whom are in the process of getting them. Some will be released back into the wild. I would say go ~ hear the animals' stories ~ and give generously.

Was this review helpful? Yes 3
Euless, Texas
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 6, 2014 via mobile

Although the price for admission is a bit high, I believe it is worthwhile to see the place if you are nearby. The owner is very good about showing and explaining questions about the animals they have at the time. It is a rescue zoo, so the animals on hand do change fairly often. Admission is good for two visits,... More

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Regina, Canada
Top Contributor
94 reviews 94 reviews
15 attraction reviews
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2014

The work and love that the owners have put into this small area really shows. The owner took us around to every animal and explained in great detail about their history, and where they are found in Costa Rica. It is small, but this is a great way to get a look at some of the animals that aren't visible... More

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Winnipeg, Canada
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2013

We were staying just down the road from La Selva so we dropped by in the morning and came back again at 5 p.m. for the feedings. I wanted to see a sloth so badly on my trip and I was ecstatic when I found out she had one.The animals looked healthy and well cared for. The bugs didn't bother... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Oxford, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
19 attraction reviews
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 18, 2012

I have been to La Selva on 2 occasions, the first time by myself and the second time with my children. As many people have pointed out it is very small, but for me that is one of it's advantages. You get the opportunity not just to see the animals up close but also handle them and learn about them... More

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Eureka, MO
19 reviews 19 reviews
4 attraction reviews
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2012

Ok, I do understand that this is a rescue zoo; but, I'm also being pragmatic about my value for money traveling with my family of 4. La Selva is exceptionally small - basically a really large backyard space of the owners. Honestly, the tour was pretty lacking - we came late in the day at sunset time (as suggested by... More

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Chicago, Illinois
14 reviews 14 reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2012

I was hesitant to write this somewhat negative review since I genuinely think the owner cares about the animals and is doing important work by rehabilitating them. However, I did want to share our strange experience. We were staying at a hotel nearby in Carillo and noticed advertisements for La Selva. We did not have a car but our hotel... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 4
Oakland, California
2 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2012

It is best to go here around 4:30 - 5:00 p.m., as during the hot part of the day, most of the animals are asleep. I love that there are lots of domestic pet cats roaming around the grounds.

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