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ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia

Monteverde versus Arenal Volcano (1 Viewer)

Skimmer15

American Birder
I'm planning my first Costa Rica trip for early in 2016, and I'm working on my itinerary. I plan to spend approximately three weeks and visit 5 or 6 main sites. I'm hoping to get by without renting a car, but that is another story for another day.

My question for today is this - is there much difference in the birds to be seen at Monteverde and Arenal Volcano? I see that Birdquest visits both places, but what would I be missing if I simply spent longer at one of them?

If I did need to choose one or the other, which one would be better? I don't want to have to do a lot of hiking, I'd like to hire a local guide, and I'd like to see as many species as possible, rather than spend time looking for rare ones.

Any thoughts?

Barry
USA
 

Corvus cornix

Well-known member
Hi,

I visited Costa Rica in 2005 with "Birdfinders" and visited both sites and they both had their own attractions. The ground agents for the trip were "COsta Rica Gateway", a specialist birdwatching company based in San Jose. It may well be worth contacting them for help/information at www.costaricagateway.com.

Good luck with the research and enjoy the trip. I'm sure you'll love the country.

Cheers
 

Stevie babe

Well-known member
I'm planning my first Costa Rica trip for early in 2016, and I'm working on my itinerary. I plan to spend approximately three weeks and visit 5 or 6 main sites. I'm hoping to get by without renting a car, but that is another story for another day.

My question for today is this - is there much difference in the birds to be seen at Monteverde and Arenal Volcano? I see that Birdquest visits both places, but what would I be missing if I simply spent longer at one of them?

If I did need to choose one or the other, which one would be better? I don't want to have to do a lot of hiking, I'd like to hire a local guide, and I'd like to see as many species as possible, rather than spend time looking for rare ones.

Any thoughts?

Barry
USA

As with Corvix the two places attract different birds due to height above sea level and attibutable to Pacific Slope or Caribbean slope. You won't see Resplendant Quetzal in Arenal for instance but Arenal has it's own range of birds so basically you will see two different sets of birds.

Regardless, have a good trip
 

dwatsonbirder

Well-known member
I didn't make it to Arenal so I cannot comment, but I spent a bit of time in Monterverde. It's a fairly easy area to bird and you should pick up some good birds fairly easily even without a guide. I believe quetzal is best in the early morning around the car park, but I heard them throughout the day and got good views in Panama so I didn't try too hard for them. There are several well marked trails, and its fairly easy to escape the crowds if you're after some solitude (and catching up with more difficult species) and there is an excellent treetop walkway which increases your chances of seeing some of the canopy species.
If you are planning on travelling independently feel free to contact me, as we travelled through CR, Panama & Nicaragua entirely on public transport.
Enjoy your visit!
 

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lewis20126

Well-known member
Monteverde is a must; Arenal / Fortuna is good for Keel-billed Motmot, Thicket Antpitta, Uniform Crake, Black-headed Nightingale-thrush, BC Coquette and other good hummers on the vervain (BT Goldentail, Violet-headed Hummer), all of which are harder / not present at Monteverde.

cheers, alan
 

Birdingcraft

Well-known member
As others have said, both fairly different and both really good. Can also find good guides for both. Hopefully, you can visit both areas- well worth it!
Not too many sites in CR overlap with Monteverde.
Regarding Arenal, same lowland and edge species can be seen in a lot of areas but it is pretty darn good for lower middle elevation species and forest birds that can be tough elsewhere.
 
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Colombia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Colombia
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