While passing through Sarapiqui, my friend and I noticed the sign advertising the Eco-Observatory. At first I was a little hesitant to stop, since I'm not a bird enthusiast; however, I knew I had made the right decision as soon as we pulled into the property. The landscape is covered with lush, vibrantly colored tropical gardens that lead up to the "Rancho", which is where the majority of the bird watching takes place. The Rancho is a large wooden, covered patio, featuring a large wrap around bar with stools, allowing guests to comfortably sit while observing the nature around them (it's especially great when enjoying a delicious cup of coffee). The Rancho has multiple humming bird feeders on the outer edge of the roof and overlooks a few trees, which attract the birds. I've never been extremely fond of anything that flies, but viewing the birds in their natural habitat and getting to learn about the different species from David, the owner, was truly a wonderful experience. In less than two hours I saw a crimson collared tanager, toucans, and multiple hummingbirds.
After relaxing in the Rancho, I went with David on a guided tour through the rain forest. There are cleared, easily accessible paths, which lead directly to the river. Having never been through a rain forest, this was definitely a new experience.
My time spend at the Eco-Observatory in Sarapiqui was definitely a highlight of my trip through Costa Rica. I felt extremely welcome while spending time at David's Eco-Observatory, and was able to see nature in a way I thought was only possible through National Geographic. This is definitely a place where I plan to return, and I highly recommend people of age ages stopping to witness this tucked away paradise first hand.
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