I was part of a group of 20(10 adults and 10 kids, ages 2 through 16) that visited Manuel Antonio recently. I wanted to do a couple of nature tours in the area and wanted the best guide to take us around. After reading some reviews on TA and google, I decided to settle on Mario and contacted him via Facebook. We signed up for the night tour(Minimum age 9) and the daytime mangrove tour(all of us could go).
For the night tour, Mario took us to the rainmaker forest. This is an amazing forest about an hour away from Quepos via unpaved and rugged roads. It was a great thrill to walk here in pitch dark with the sound of rushing water in the background. We saw many animals including eyelash pit viper, different species of frogs including glass frog, leaf insect, jesus christ lizard etc. We also walked on the hanging bridges and it was incredible seeing the stars enveloped by the sounds of jungle.
The next day we did the mangrove tour in the morning. It was easily the highlight of our entire trip to Costa Rica. Once again, we saw a ton of animals - monkeys, crocodiles, different species of birds, Jesus Lizard walking on water etc. One enterprising monkey even jumped on to our boat looking for food(we didn't give any). The best part of our tour was getting an up close look at couple of boa constrictors on a tree. Mario and the boat captain expertly maneuvered our boat very close to the snakes but without disturbing them.
We all had a great time in Manuel Antonio, thanks in no small part to Mario Brenes of Jade tours. Mario has a wealth of knowledge about the different animals and we learnt a lot from him. Thanks Mario. Pura Vida.
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