Tortuga Island Snorkeling Trip – Up Close and Personal with Costa Rica’s Marine Wonders

Tortuga Island

The waters surrounding Costa Rica are home to nearly 7,000 marine species, some 3.5% of the total aquatic life on Earth. Snorkeling through these warm, clear waters is a fabulous way to enjoy the region’s incredible aquatic biodiversity. A variety of tropical fish – including puffers, barracudas, parrotfish, snappers and butterfly fish – can be found swimming amongst brightly colored coral reefs, while on the seafloor below, starfish, sea cucumbers and sand dollars can be seen slighting slowly along. A knowledgeable local guide will equip participants with quality snorkels, masks and fins, and provide access to astounding regional seascapes.

Set just off the tip of the Nicoya Peninsula’s southern coast, Tortuga Island is a pleasant little island. Palm trees fringe white-sand beaches that are ideal for reading and sunbathing. The emerald waters just beyond the beach are warm and inviting, and the snorkeling conditions here are excellent. While peering underwater you may see angelfish, needlefish, stingrays, porcupine fish, or moray eels.

Experience a scenic trip down the coast to Tortuga Island, where you will be able to visit this famous warm sand beach. This island is well known for its enchanting beauty. Tortuga Island is famous for its immaculate white sand beach, amazing vegetation and azure waters. Snorkel from the boat into the clear waters off shore. Enjoy many colorful tropical fish and other unique marine life. You should be able to see eels, puffer fish, parrotfish, triggerfish, dolphins, manta rays, devil-rays and whales on a good day. You can also take a break, relax on the tropical island and enjoy coconuts and oysters on the shoreline.

Visitors can partake the beauty of the white sand beaches of the Tortuga Island and explore the magnificent coral reef nearby. This trip can take you from Tambor bay in a Panoramic 20 minutes trip to the Tortuga Island. The surrounding bay, as well as the amazing rock formations along the way will make of this an exhilarating experience. Once on the island enjoy its relaxing surroundings to sunbathe or just lay around under the Almond and Palm trees. Later, you can pick up your trip and go snorkelling where you’ll get up close and personal with a stunning underwater world, inhabited by hundreds of varieties of fish and Corals with more vivid colors than words can sum up. Humpback Whales, dolphins and Sea turtles can sometimes be spotted during this trip.

You will get to witness a splendid landscape and have the opportunity to play with the Dolphins and watch the amazing jumps of the humpback whales along the way. Before you get to the Tortuga Island in Costa Rica, your tour organizer can take stops in three different points; the waterfall el Chorro, a ship that sank almost 50 years ago, and the third spot is what is locally known as the Rainbow Rock, which is volcanic rock formation that looks like and arch that you can actually pass under, the tide and weather conditions permitting. All this is all happening between Montezuma and Isla Tortuga. This is also an excellent opportunity to view the coffee plantations, volcanic mountains and the unique Brahman cattle that form an ever-changing panorama.

As soon as you get to the Tortuga Island, you can go snorkeling in a spot right in front of Tortuga Island. Spotting a group of playful dolphins, marveling at the enormous jumping manta rays or for the luckiest of visitors, catching a glimpse of surfacing humpback whales are just a few examples of the marine life frequently viewed as we make our way to the island. This is the best spot in the central pacific of Costa Rica for snorkeling. Later, you can enjoy a delicious lunch (served by the tour operator if included in the tour) served on the beachfront spot in the island. The grilled fish is a clear favourite with many snorkelers. Most tour operators include transportation, food and snorkelling equipment in their tour price.

Other than snorkeling, you can take part in a volleyball game or rent a kayak to discover the other secluded beaches of the island. Or for the more adventurous take a hike up to top of the island for some spectacular views of the Gulf of Nicoya and the surrounding islands. You can also join your tour organizer for a second snorkelling session at a different spot on the reef or take a siesta under the coco palms on the island. You can also enjoy a day long Tortuga Island cruise that includes among other top notch features gourmet cuisine, cold wine, sightseeing, banana boat/snorkeling excursions.

A typical tour starts with a fun and scenic 50-minute boat ride; watch for groups of playful dolphins, jumping manta rays, or surfacing humpback whales. Once at Tortuga Island, the guide will most likely lead you on a fantastic snorkeling tour. After a scrumptious tropical lunch, the rest of the afternoon is yours to enjoy – relax on the beach, play volleyball, rent a kayak, or hike trails to the top of the island for spectacular views of the Nicoya Gulf and its surrounding islands. A pleasant boat ride brings you back at the end of the day.

Some tour operators also offer the version, that includes Curu National Park for more adventure. A short boat ride passes a sunken ship, Rainbow Arch rock and usually schools of dolphins, fish, and the occasional sea turtle. Visitors arrive at near-by Curu National Park where professional bilingual guides lead a pleasant and easy walk through the forest and fields pointing out the native trees, plants and wildlife. The park is home to three types of monkeys, anteaters, raccoons, sloth, and many types of birds and butterflies. Curu is a Biological Research Center and you will see many of the animals that are being cared for close-up. From the park a five-minute ride to the white sandy beach at pristine Isla Tortuga will can kick start the second phase of the tour. There you will snorkel with an abundance of tropical fish, or just swim in the water, play on the beach, enjoy fresh coconuts, visit the gift shop and hike the island. Local fishermen might even offer fresh oysters, lobsters, or fish to eat.

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