STR courses in Costa Rica are hosted by Fundacion Neotropica at their rainforest education center on the Osa Peninsula. The center was built with funds donated by Danish school children. It features comfortable cottages with a bathroom and screened in porch, a very nice dining area and research/library facilities. Fifteen minutes away is Dulce Gulf, where dolphins can be encountered and humback whales can be seen in season. Corcovado National Park and its 375 species of birds, 124 mammal species, 48 ampibian species and 71 species is nearby, also. Magnificent macaws are common. Toucans, tree frogs, jaguars, iguanas, sloths and anteaters are all to be found, too. In addition there are many species of monkeys to be observed in the park as well as around the center. The rare and agile squirrel monkey is a particularly enjoyable animal to observe. Neotropica offers courses that give participants a chance to see and learn about Costa Rica’s wildlife and the ecosystems they depend upon. Neotropica has also woven into its program a rich cultural component. In addition to studying mangrove estuaries and primary forests, course participants visit the indigenous Guaymi indian reserve, organic farms and the sustainable development projects of the Gamba community. Local school visits are also very popular, as is time spent helping with reforestation projects or beach clean ups. Additional activities often include Spanish language tips sessions, dance lessons, a community soccer game and workshops with local artisans.
Kayaking, nightwalks, a hike to a local waterfall, a day spent in Corcovada National Park and exploration of the Chocuaco lagoon are some of the other course highlights.
Squirrel monkey, capuchin monkey, spider monkey, tree frog, poison arrow dart frog, green iguana, boa constrictor, vine snake, Jesus lizard, three toed sloth, anteater, coatimundi, macaw, parrot, hummingbird, toucan, leaf cutter ant, Morpho butterfly, walking stick, dung beetle. Marine life: Dolphin, sea turtle.