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“Johan is the best!”

Johan Chaves - Guided Day Tours
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: I am Johan Chaves, a local naturalist guide who has lived in the region since my childhood. With the passion, enthusiasm and the experience gained at the field during this 8 years in my profession, I am always willing to give each customer a lifetime experience through my office; the rain forest. I offer individualized tour services that can be customized ranging from a fun family vacation to a serious nature trek thru the stunning scenery of the Manuel Antonio park.
New York City, New York
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
“Johan is the best!”
Reviewed March 25, 2013

WE LOVED JOHAN! Basically the only way to see all the wildlife in the park is to hire a guide with a spotting scope and the knowledge to be able to spot everything living in the forest. Johan was so cool, and you could tell he really loves guiding people, getting to know them, and showing them the awesome national park he loves. He was younger than most other guides we saw, but we noticed that the other guides would try to follow what he was doing and where he was looking because he had a really good eye for spotting things. He was also really knowledgable about all the wildlife and plants in the park. We learned so much as he walked us through. Plus he was just a really nice, cool guy who was fun to talk to. Johan is the best guide at Manuel Antonio! Don't waste your time with anyone else!

Visited March 2013
Thank angiegirl62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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382 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
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English first
Palo Alto, California
1 review
“Amazing Guide!”
Reviewed March 19, 2013

Johan was an amazing guide. He was knowledgeable and you could tell he was passionate about his job. Johan is so excited to show us the animals that he started pointing out squirrel monkeys and iguanas from our balcony. Once we entered the park, we saw a ton of animals from Capuchin monkeys, howler monkeys, basilisks lizards, 2 & 3 toed sloth plus many more. With his help, I was able to get some amazing photos on my iPhone! We ended the tour with a refreshing fruit plate and some soursop juice.

When I come back to Manual Antonio, I would definitely schedule another tour with Johan. Plus it is always nice to meet another person who does TRX. Thanks again, Johan!

Visited March 2013
Thank Shannon F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
King's Lynn, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“If you're a birder Johan's your man”
Reviewed March 17, 2013

Yes if you're a keen birder staying in the Manuel Antonio area look no further than Johan Chavez for your guide. He gave me such a wonderfully enjoyable and bird rich introduction to neotropical birding on two separate day trips one to his local patches Esquipulas and La Gallega and the other to Carrara national park and wetlands en route. He obviously knew these habitats inside out from years of birding here. His ability at identifying the birds by call, then locating, tracking and scoping them so I was able to get the best possible view was just amazing. If necessary his use of a laser pointer proved invaluable to get me onto a bird and what fantastic birds they were - fiery-billed aracari, black mandibled toucan, lineated and pale billed woodpeckers, barred antshrike, king vulture, purple crowned fairy, mangrove hummingbird, gartered trogon, turquoise-browed motmot, scissor-tailed flycatcher, orange-collared manakin, Montezuma oropendula, red-legged honeycreeper, Cherrie's tanager, rufous and white wren etc etc. When necessary Johann would use recordings to bring the birds within viewing range. This was particularly successful with a ferruginous pygmy-owl but worked well for many species. I saw an impressive total of 115 species on both trips.

Of course as you will have gathered from Johan's other reviews he not only knows his country's birds but is very knowledgeable about all aspects of Costa Rican natural history and is a great guy to spend time with.

Book him now!

Visited February 2013
2 Thank DaveGarner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cambridge, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Exceptionally kind and helpful”
Reviewed March 7, 2013

I tried to book a last minute tour with Johan. No surprise, based on the reviews that I read, that he had already been booked that day for a private tour. That was the expected part.

What I didn't expect was how great Johan was at helping me find alternatives so that we could still have a great experience at Manuel Antonio Park. He had nothing to gain in this and he still went well out of his way to make sure that I was put in contact with a colleague of his, who he recommended as a great guide. And, he wasn't wrong - we had a great day in the park.

People show their true colours when they have little to gain for themselves. Johan showed that he is genuinely interested in making sure that visitors to his country and this park get to appreciate them fully. Thank you for that, Johan!

Visited March 2013
Thank Choco18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Exceptional guide!”
Reviewed March 6, 2013 via mobile

Spent the morning with Johan touring through MA national park.
First thing we noticed is that even the other guides consider him the best in the park.
While only 25 years old Johan has an exceptional acumen for ecology as well as an excellent and useful passion for photography.
He will help you get great shots.
Our suggestion would be to hire him for a private tour. For the little extra money we had one of the best experiences of our Costa Rican adventure.
Call his cell which is posted and he will make the entire process very easy and give you a great per-tour tutorial.

1 Thank Chris D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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