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Tanager Ecotours

Features Animals
Isla de Coiba, Panama
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About Tanager Ecotours
Tanager tourism is a small eco-tour company, run by two biologists. We organise camping trips to Coiba (1, 2 or 3 nights), snorkelling and walks through the forest. We can almost guarantee that you will see hawksbill turtles and white-tip reefsharks, plus many many other reef fish. We also organise camping trips into the Cerro Hoya, one of the least explored parks in Panama. Be prepared for a steep climb over rough tracks. We usually camp one or two nights near the cloud forest. We also organise the following day or half day trips (guided or unguided): - The Mangroves of the Gulf of Montijo - Snorkeling and dolphin watching to Isla Cébaco Caleta bay - Whale watching from 1 August to 30 September - Bird watching in Cerro Hoya, the gulf of Montijo or Pelagic birding south of Azuero peninsula
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Tanager Ecotours
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Dave wrote a review Mar 2020
Reno, Nevada12 contributions5 helpful votes
The Coiba trip is an amazing tour, one of the best vacation experiences I have ever had. Due to the protected status of the island and surrounding waters the reef fish are much bigger than anywhere I have ever snorkeled and many sea turtles in the area. The camp is very comfortable with raised mattresses in large Canvas tents, a shower with water piped in from a stream and plenty of delicious food. I was a little concerned about mosquitoes heading into the trip but they were not a problem at all, not a single bite. There can be some water splashed into their boats when traveling so be sure to bring dry bags for your camera and binoculars. I just used the dry bag as a daypack for both land and sea activity, attaching my water bottle with a carabiner.
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Date of experience: February 2020
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Sal wrote a review Nov 2019
Panama City, Panama5 contributions
From the reception at the Heliconia Lodge in Mariato to our return to this facility for a warm shower and great lunch: my son (20) and I had such a memorable experience at this incredible island. The boat ride to and from Coiba was comfortable and felt shorter than expected, the numerous humpback whales and dolphins we saw on our must have added yo this. The camp was well set-up and tents and beds were comfortable and felt safe. We were well taken care of by Kees and Loes with great food and drinks, who would adjust every meal for each individual needs or diet. The activities (several hikes, snorkel opportunities and a mangrove excursion) were well balanced and gave an unique impression of magnificent Coiba. Under the experienced guidance of biologist Kees we saw many species including a number of endemic species: Coiba howler monkey, agouti and heard the spinetail. A flock of scarlet macaws and many other birds in the healthiest mangroves I have ever seen. The snorkeling was spectacular: many turtles, white tips, eagle rays and very nice and relative healthy coral with all is colorful fish. Absolute highlight was a baby humpback whale practising its voice and pectoral slaps within 10 meters from our snorkel route! Just incredible! I am sure that we will be back! Highly recommended!
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Date of experience: August 2019
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Response from Kees G, Owner at Tanager Ecotours
Responded Jan 8, 2020
Hello Saldasilva, Thank you for your review. We are glad you enjoyed Coiba. Seeing and hearing Humpback whales is a special experience indeed. Every year, from the end of July to mid September, these magnificent creatures stay at Coiba NP to give birth and nurse their calves. Best regards and we hope to see you again.
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Michelle D wrote a review Aug 2019
9 contributions2 helpful votes
My husband booked this tour for me as I love nature and animals. The tour is well-organised and the activities are varied. The guide Kees is very knowledgeable, enthusiastic, hard-working, friendly and accomodating. It was an absolute pleasure having him as our guide. He is a real gentleman. He made the trip very interesting and informative. We saw dolphins, whales, monkeys, white tip sharks, turtles and countless species of fish. The food was so tasty and the tents were comfortable, spacious and clean...like glamping! I would highly recommend this tour to all nature lovers!
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Date of experience: August 2019
1 Helpful vote
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Response from Kees G, Owner at Tanager Ecotours
Responded Aug 16, 2019
Hello Michelle D., Thank you for writing a review. We are glad that you enjoyed the trip and saw all the interesting animals. We passed your comments of the food on to the cooks, they have a big smile on their face today. Best regards,
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RobinH81 wrote a review Apr 2019
Tampa, Florida86 contributions83 helpful votes
My husband and I just returned from a three-day trip to Coiba, and it exceeded all expectations. The trip begins with a night at their cozy B&B, followed by two nights camping on Coiba with multiple hikes and snorkeling stops, as well as a tour of the mangroves. Kees, assisted by Jacinto, was a top-notch guide, and helped us spot an incredible amount of wildlife, which is exactly what we came for. The coral reefs were out of this world, and the water temperature was ideal for swimming. On our tour in late March, we saw two types of dolphin, white tip reef sharks, turtles, rays, gorgeous fish, and countless birds. I truly can't imagine a better way to experience Coiba. The accommodations on the island are simple, but perfect. I was a bit nervous when I found out we would be in tents, but they were large and comfortable, with proper bed frames and mattresses. With staff on hand preparing all our meals- which accommodate any dietary restrictions- our every need was catered to, so we could focus on enjoying the amazing adventure. We had a great group of people on our tour (you really bond with people when you have to share outdoor bathroom facilities!), and the balance between activity and rest was perfect for us. The care and attention Loes and Kees have put into every detail of the tour (do take the advice provided on their website regarding clothing, supplies, and things to pack) made it a truly once in a lifetime experience. I can't recommend it highly enough.
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Date of experience: March 2019
2 Helpful votes
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Response from Kees G, Owner at Tanager Ecotours
Responded Aug 18, 2019
Hello RobinH81, Thank you for writing a review, and such a glowing one at that. We are glad to hear that the camping was better than expected. We hope the remainder of your trip in Pnama was just as good. Best regards, Kees and Loes
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Lani R wrote a review Feb 2019
Kirkland, Washington, United States46 contributions11 helpful votes
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Treated my husband to a three-day snorkeling trip to Coiba for a big birthday. This was my first snorkeling experience, and I am sure I'm spoiled for anywhere else. Traveling with a biologist guide and support staff, "glamping" on Coiba was a treat. We had our own tent, and the meals were great. We enjoyed our fellow trip-mates. I saw reef sharks, turtles, rays, eels, and myriads of wonderful, colorful fish. It was very Disney-esque! The water was clear and warm enough for even me. The nature hikes were fun, cooler temps in the shade of the forest. I learned nature facts I did not know, and saw not only birds, but howler monkeys! This was a first for me, and I was thrilled. We struck out on spotting alligators, but did see a few large iguanas from a boat ride near the mangroves. The busy little hermit crabs on the sandy beach were comical, and just prior to leaving, I saw two scarlet macaws flying away from the beach. Tips: wear long pants and at least a short-sleeved shirt when snorkeling to avoid having to apply too much sunscreen. Apply sunscreen, 50 SPF, or there will be regrets if you have light skin. Bring a towel or light shawl on the boat to help cover up exposed skin, and to sit on during the one beach lunch. Bring an underwater camera if you can. The guide will share pictures after the trip with everyone on the trip, but they won't be as personal. If physically able, it's nice to help the crew carry supplies to and from the camp. No swimming allowed at night (safety issues), but I was told the star-gazing from the beach was amazing. Bring bug spray and some sort of itch-relief product. Long sleeves and pants are a good idea in the evenings. For the boat ride, the least bumpy ride is in the back of the boat. I and another lady with osteoporosis were gallantly allowed to sit there. If the waves are choppy, the ride will be slower and obviously more bumpy. It was a glorious trip, and I'm so glad we did it!
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Date of experience: February 2019
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Response from Kees G, Owner at Tanager Ecotours
Responded Feb 19, 2019
Hello Lani R, Thank you for your enthousiastic review. Coiba is a gem indeed. The tips are useful!
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