Thursday, February 24
We had a bit of time this morning because our first tour didn’t start until 10 a.m. We enjoyed our breakfast at TuleCafe and took some pictures of the wildlife we encountered while we walked around the property. We saw a Sloth, a Squirrel Monkey with her baby and a Scarlet Macaw.
We decided to take a short hike that was mostly on Tulemar’s property. We climbed up fairly high on the north side of the beach. On the way there we encountered this Spotted Woodcreeper and a Bare-throated Tiger-Heron. (Thanks to Johan Chaves for the I.D.)
Parts of the trail were quite technical. It became more difficult the further we went.
There was a lot of foliage as it wasn’t a maintained trail, so it was hard to get any pictures of the water below. We passed through a small stand of bamboo.
It was getting close to 10 a.m. so we followed the trail down to the beach and then headed up the long hill to the reception area to meet our driver.
We were driven to the Marina in Quepos and given a lesson on how to operate the Jetski. We chose to share one. Mike drove first and we followed our guide out into the ocean.
We rode south along the coastline to Manuel Antonio park and circled some small rock islands.
We then turned around and headed back towards the bay for some snorkelling.
This is the spot that all the tours bring people to snorkel. You can see some of the Tulemar villas on the hill across the water above the beach.
We didn’t snorkel for very long. There weren’t very many fish and the water was very cloudy. Getting back on the JetSki was a bit challenging for me as I am only 5 feet tall and had to climb on from the water. I took my turn as driver and brought us back to the marina. I loved driving and would definitely get my own JetSki next time.
When our driver dropped us off at our resort we headed to TuleCafe for a late lunch. We had our pick of tables and chose to sit at the larger table in order to stay out of the sun.
The Red-backed Squirrel Monkey is endangered and only found in the Osa Peninsula and the Manuel Antonio area. They are very small – the adults are only 68 centimetres long including their tail. They travel in groups of 10 to 40 and are a lot of fun to watch. Today they were watching us.
Cute as they are, we did not give them any food! After lunch we spent a bit of time at the pool by the restaurant. I enjoyed a Pina Colada while watching for monkeys. We discovered that every afternoon they come through here to get a drink from the pool.
At 5 p.m. we met Oman Chaves outside the reception area. He would be our guide for the nighttime nature tour. We drove for about 30 minutes to a different location closer to the mountains. We looked at some interesting plant life while we waited for it to get dark. The Honeycomb Ginger and Torch Ginger plants are considered invasive species. They are native to South East Asia.
We also saw a few birds including this Black-hooded Antshrike , some Muscovey Ducks and a Golden-naped Woodpecker.
Once it was dark we made our way down a short but steep muddy path into a small ravine with a tiny creek. Right away Oman found a tree frog. There are many kinds and we saw quite a few throughout the evening.
One of the most fun frogs to find is the Red-eyed Tree Frog. They are quite colourful. They are harmless to people and quite small at approximately 7 centimetres.
Omam was quite excited to find a Glass Frog for us. They are very small at just 3.2 centimetres. Their skin is translucent so if you look at them from underneath you can see some of their internal organs. The female lays her eggs on the underside of a leaf. During the day they are left unattended but at night the male keeps watch by placing one hand on the clutch. He urinates on them to keep them moist. When they are ready, the tadpoles hatch and fall into the water below and grow into froglets.
Our tour finished around 8:30 p.m. and we arrived back at Tulemar around 9. We stopped at TuleCafe for a snack of fries and then headed to bed.