Rainforest Tram, Walk and Culture Tour
Explore the beauty that is Costa Rica with this unique tour to Turu Ba Ri Park and ride above the rain forest in an aerial tram, then learn of the tropical ecology up close and personal on a nature walk. Before your day is over you will also visit Puntarenas City and discover the rich history of this port capital discovered by Hernan Ponce de Leon in 1519.
Your breath-taking adventure begins with a relaxing drive through the wonderful Costa Rican countryside in an air-conditioned motor coach for only 20 guests. Operating for small groups provides a professional and personalized service you can only experience with us. Your guide will point out many sights of interest including mango, sugar and citrus plantations, diverse fruit stands and rural farming communities. You will be on your way to Orotina Town, approximately 1-hour drive from the pier. Upon arrival at the beautiful property you will have some free time for exploration of the surroundings before your rainforest and cultural experience begins.
The Turu Ba Ri Tropical Park is an eco-adventure oriented theme park with an Aerial Tram nestled within 650 acres of beautiful scenery, surrounded on the Northeast by the Rio Grande de Tarcoles, to the Southwest by the Turrubares hillsides and the Carara National Park and to the West by the Nicoya Gulf, which you can see from the highest elevation areas. The natural surroundings of the park make for an ideal place where visitors can learn more about Costa Rica's natural history and discover the ancient life-style while having an adventure experience in this beautiful landscape.
Your adventure starts with a15-minute tram ride from one mountain to another and descending deep inside the rain forest, where the main park attractions are located. With your naturalist tour guide, you will learn many interesting aspects of tropical ecology, wildlife, plants, sustainable development, conservation and rehabilitation projects developed at this property.
During the nature walk you will visit multiple attractions including a large butterfly garden with many colorful species, including a lab with eggs, caterpillars and cocoons. There are several rainforest trails with primary forest as well as an orchid, cactus and bromeliads garden. View a typical sugar mill in operation with the traditional oxen, see traditional plantations such as coffee, sugar cane, banana, aromatic spices, cocoa and others. A typical countryside farm is also included in this experience where you will be able to see an assortment of different animals.
The park is also a rehabilitation center for wildlife species that have been injured or rescued by the park rangers. See iguanas, white-tail deer, crocodiles, monkeys and other species that are all a part of the exhibits of this important effort.
After visiting the attractions, you will return to the visitor's center by a second tram ride. At the center a bar and restaurant is available for those interested in a taste of the typical flavors of the Costa Rican cuisine plus local beer, all for a small extra charge.
Returning to the pier, before the drop off, you will visit Puntarenas City. This is the largest city in the Central Pacific, some 120 kilometers west of the capital San Jose. Puntarenas means 'sandy point' in Spanish, and used to be one of the country's principal seaports. Situated in the Gulf of Nicoya, Puntarenas has played a huge role in the history of Costa Rica.
For years this city was a major sea port. However, now it is mostly used as a stopover port for many cruise ships that sail the waters of the Pacific Ocean. Still used as an important commercial fishing port, Puntarenas offers visitors and locals alike a variety of tantalizing fresh sea foods such as shrimp, lobsters and many varieties of fish. A lively and attractive city, perhaps one of Puntarenas's most interesting features is the Paseo de los Turistas. This is a tree-lined promenade adjacent to the beach that turns into a colorful street on weekends, as people from all over flock the popular restaurants, discos, cafes, bars and hotels that are found here. There are many beautiful old, unusual buildings found all over the city as well as several extraordinary restaurants and hotels. Puntarenas also has a lovely old church which is a must see as well.
Reviewer: P. Munro
We took six excursions on our Panama Canal trip, five of which we booked through the cruise ship - except this one! It was the best of the bunch. Rather than being on a bus crammed with other cruisers and herded from place to place, we were a small group, saw amazing wildlife (a jaguarudi!), and had an interesting and knowledgeable guide. We loved the tram, and took guided walks through the eco-park and visited a butterfly garden and some giant oxen in an old fashioned sugar cane press. We finished the tour with fruit and beverages. Excellent tour. Highly recommended!
Reviewer: Sally Snyder
As a whole, the excursion was excellent. Guide was very good, and we enjoyed the butterflies, oxen squeezing sugar cane, rain forest plants, walking tour and the refreshments at the end. I would have liked a MUCH longer tram ride in the forest canopy. It was over in a couple of minutes, which was disappointing.
Reviewer: John Johnson
Very interesting plants and animals (esp. Orchids)and the guide was knowledgeable and friendly. Was hoping the tram would have gone thru the canopy of the rainforest, but crossed a river instead. Would have liked to have seen more animals in their natural setting. Refreshing fruit and drink after nature tour.
Reviewer: Susan Romberger
We loved this tour!!! Very few people on our tour, however, two older couples on the tour must not have paid attention to the description of the tour...walking over uneven ground for a mile plus. Our wonderful guide, Alejandro, and driver, Alma, came up with a solution for them. After taking the tram, we were met and escorted through the ""walking"" part of the tour by our van. We were a little bummed because we like to hike and there were parts of the park the van was unable to go to. The whole group had to stay together, so we rode, then got out, then rode to the next stop, rode and got out, and so forth. Over all I would do this tour again, but would like hike to be able to see the deer and alligators.
Reviewer: Marilyn cummins
Very Nice tour in the people were wonderful we really enjoyed this