NatureArt Lab offers participants the opportunity to learn new skills, meet new people and immerse themselves in art inspired by nature. Select a series of courses to suit your interests, and consider developing your foundation skills through a better understanding of colour theory, drawing skills or use of water-based mediums such as watercolour or gouache. Our team of experienced tutors will support your creative learning journey with expert instruction and guidance in a fully equipped art-science space.
Costa Rica & Panama: February - March 2020 $12,800.00 (Deposit of $1,500.00 due by 31 July, only 7 places left- EARLY BIRD DISCOUNT AVAILABLE!)
A 16-day wildlife adventure for photographers, artists and nature-lovers to the most pristine rainforests of Central America!
Exotic Costa Rica, located in Central America, is famous for its biodiversity, lush rainforests, beautiful beaches and impressive volcanoes. From 23 February through to 9 March 2020, join us for a specially designed 16-day Costa Rica Ultimate Wildlife Eco-tour. Costa Rica contains nearly 6% of the world’s biodiversity, both in species and ecosystems and yet it is area is only 0.03% of the world’s surface! These dates have been chosen as they are at the absolute peak of wildlife activity and the best time of year to maximize the species we will observe.
Our tour will take you through rugged mountains to the Caribbean lowlands, the cloud forests and volcanoes of the central mountains, the lush Pacific rainforests and an extended time in the Osa Peninsula, the most remote, wild and biodiverse region of Central America. We will be boating on the canals and lagoons that form the delta of the Estrella River, rafting on the Sarapiqui River, visit the world-famous La Selva Biological Research Station with hikes through the exceptionally lush rainforests, and a visit to the spectacular hot springs at the base of the Arenal Volcano.
Among many other mammals, get to know the two species of sloth, spider, capuchin, howler and squirrel monkeys, river otters, kinkajous, tapirs, coatis, and possibly pumas. Costa Rica is home to a myriad of bird species (921 species!), with over 314 and counting at the Cahuita National Park area alone. Visit La Selva Biological Station with hikes through the exceptionally lush rainforests. Parrots, toucans, oropendolas, kingfishers and many other birds can be seen along the rivers. Reptiles and amphibians also display a remarkable diversity. We will see caimans, American crocodiles, boa constrictors, the magnificent basilisks or Jesus Christ lizards that run over water, red-eyed tree frogs, translucent jewel-like glass frogs, and of course a diversity of the extremely colourful poison-dart frogs. The diversity of insects and plants is too overwhelming to even give a glimpse here. We offer you a chance to witness one of the world’s capitals of wildlife and nature.
See spectacular hummingbirds – around 50 species – and walk through the majestic forests of the Monteverde Reserve Cloud Forest. We will also be bird watching for Emerald Toucanets, MotMots and Quetzals (considered the most beautiful birds of the world). Our trip includes an opportunity to see the evening scarlet macaw migration at Carara National Park – with it’s old-growth forest of rare giant hardwood trees. We will also have time for relaxation with a stopover at some of Costa Rica’s famous beaches. Our program includes a short sea kayak paddle experience in the Golfito Bay in search of dolphins and whales, and an evening snorkel amongst trails of bioluminescent plankton.
Our final destination is to Corcovado National Park – THE ultimate place in Costa Rica. It is the most remote and biodiverse location in the country to see many rare and endemic wildlife species. With an extended stay of four nights at this location, we will see beautiful birds such as the scarlet macaw, salty-tailed trogon; cats such as the jaguarundi, puma and rare mammals such tapir and tyra.
For those interested in wildlife photography, there will be opportunities for private tuition and mini-workshops throughout the trip with accompanying biologist and wildlife photographer Dr Damien Esquerré. NatureArt Lab Director and artist Julia Landford will facilitate sketching workshops for artists, and Alan Landford will provide entomological expertise throughout the trip.
Panama Pre-trip Extension (18 - 22 February 2020): POA
We have been able to secure an extraordinary and rarely accessible optional five-day pre-trip extension to the Darien rainforests of Panama. This location provides a chance to see wildcats such as the mighty jaguar, puma, jaguarondi, margay and ocelot, in addition to other very special mammals such as different species of sloth, monkeys, tapir, olingo, kinkajou and ant-eaters (start googling some of these if you are not familiar, they are very special creatures only found in the New World!). Similarly, this region is a bird-watchers paradise, with countless species of toucans, parrots, trogons, hummingbirds, kingfishers, woodpeckers and curassow. However, our main target will be the very elusive harpy eagle, with a nest deep in the jungle that offers the chance to see both adults and chicks! The diversity of reptiles and amphibians, as well as invertebrates, is mind-blowing. Only 8 places are available for this extension.
Tour Price and Early Bird Discounts:
- The total price for this Award-Winning 16 DAY TOUR is AU$12,800.00* excluding airfares.
- A deposit of $1,500.00 will confirm your place on this exceptional wildlife trip. Please note that 50% of this payment is non-refundable after 30 September 2019.
- The balance is due 120 days prior to departure – by instalments on or before 23 October 2019.
- Early Bird Bonus: $200 discount is available for any confirmed double occupancy reservation made by 31 July 2019. Early bird pricing is not available for single occupancy.
*Final pricing is subject to minimum numbers being reached. A small surcharge will apply should numbers fall below 11. A maximum of 11 places are available.
- Single Supplement, if available: $3,164.00/person (in addition to the base trip fee) for any traveller requiring their own room for the full 16 days. Single rooms are subject to availability only once all paying travellers have been confirmed.
- Visas are not required on entry to Costa Rica. Tourists can stay a maximum of 90 days.
- All adults and children require the following documents to enter Costa Rica:
• A current valid passport. The passport should be valid for six months from when you plan to leave the country.
• A return ticket to exit Costa Rica (either to return to your country or to go to another country) You may enter Costa Rica without visa for a maximum stay of up to 90 days.
- Check with your airline/travel agent in case you have connecting flights overseas as part of your journey to Costa Rica. It may be the case that countries you pass through en route to your destination may require a separate transit visa. Please refer to visa requirements of the specific country. Our recommended travel agent is Jamison Travel, Canberra - 02 6251 5166.
- Travel insurance is required by all participants.
- Full details including itinerary and terms and conditions are available separately.
A reasonable level of fitness is required to participate in this tour. In some destinations there are walking trails by foot. The program includes boat trips, optional white water rafting and kayak paddling, as well as snorkeling opportunities. We recommend that you consult a doctor and dentist prior to your decision to participate.
Information and pre-departure briefing
NatureArt Lab will host an information session for participants prior to departure.
This tour is run in partnership with Wild Planet Adventures - Five time award winner of the “World’s 50 Best Trips”; Costa Rica Ultimate Wildlife ecotour – voted ‘Top 10 Must-Do Trips’ by FODORS.
Photography by Damien Esquerre.