• The name “Costa Rica” means “rich coast” in Spanish as European explorers who came upon this land in the 16th century believed, mistakenly, it was rich with gold.


  • Of the over 200 volcanic formations in Costa Rica, seven of them are active. Arenal is one of the ten most active volcanoes in the world.
  • Costa Rica is smaller than the state of West Virginia, making up just .03% of the Earth’s surface, but hosts 5% of Earth’s biodiversity. It’s said to have the highest density of biodiversity of any country in the world.


  • 54 species of hummingbirds and 10% of the known species of butterflies live in Costa Rica.
  • Birdwatchers can catch sight of the vibrant quetzal, blue-footed boobies, scarlet macaw, and toucans.
  • There are over 1,200 species of orchids in Costa Rica so it’s not surprising that the national flower is an orchid.


  • Monteverde Cloud Forest is the largest cloud forest in Central America. You can find Two and Three-Toed Sloths hanging in the trees here.


  • Four types of monkeys are native to the forests of Costa Rica: the Howler, Spider, White-Headed Capuchin and Squirrel. The only place you can see all four species is in Corcovado National Park.


  • Costa Rican coffee has been recognized as among the world’s finest. According to many a Costa Rican car’s bumper sticker, “Juan Valdez drinks Costa Rican coffee.”

-Photos of  Arenal Volcano, bird/butterfly collage, and monkey by WT Trip Leader Federico Alban, Costa Rica Wildlife

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