Wildlife In Costa Rica | A Coffee N Jungle Night Hike

Since we began our relationship nearly seven years ago, I’ve successfully gotten Dan to try heaps of food he never thought he would enjoy. Things like guacamole, sushi, goat cheese, veggie burgers, and other various ‘chick’ foods used to be all off limits for him. Now he regularly chooses to eat them of his own free will.

However, no matter how hard I try, there’s one little drink Dan continues to avoid: coffee.  But while Dan might try to evade a cup of Joe at all costs, I regularly down at least three cups a day. I’m pretty sure the caffeine doesn’t do anything for me at this point, but the morning ritual of sitting down with a mug of coffee is certainly one of my favorite parts of the day.


Roasted coffee


So when we had the opportunity to go on a Coffee’N Jungle Night Tour, we knew it would be the perfect compromise for us both. Dan could focus on photographing Costa Rica’s diverse and constantly surprising wildlife, and I could learn about the coffee making process—and of course sample a few local varieties in the process.


coffee tree


Our expectations were met and then exceeded.


The Coffee’N Jungle Night Tour turned out to be one of our favorite tours, and the one where we saw the most wildlife in one area.


We knew the evening was going to be great the moment we met Junior and Orlando, our tour guides. Orlando was our nature specialist, while Junior enlightened us on the coffee making process. They both worked so well together that their roles flowed seamlessly; it was easy to believe they had been friends for years before creating the tour. Their energy and excitement was palpable—perhaps from all the coffee—and in no time we were spotting wildlife left and right.


Coffee N Jungle Tour


Nature is unpredictable, and there is no way to guarantee what can or can’t be sighted at any particular time. However, we seemed to have had a bit of luck. Here’s what Dan was able to photograph:


Two Toed Sloth

Wildlife in Costa Rica


Crested Owl


Wildlife in Costa Rica

Whoo’s that walking on my yard?

Wildlife in Costa Rica


Brilliant Forest Frog

Wildlife in Costa Rica


Stick Bug

Wildlife in Costa Rica


Rufus-eye Frog

Wildlife in Costa Rica


Orange Knee Tarantula

Wildlife in Costa Rica


Motmot (Blue Crown)

Wildlife in Costa Rica


Social Flycatcher

Wildlife in Costa Rica


Along our nighttime search for animals, we stopped to learn about the coffee making process. Orlando led us from the stages of collecting the beans all the way through to the roasting and grinding of them. When it came time to sample the different coffee roasts, Junior even let us in on a fact he claims only 1% of coffee drinkers know. We can’t divulge his biggest secret here, but let’s just say my mind was blown—and I will likely be purchasing coffee differently in the future.

It was quite amazing to view Costa Rica’s wildlife at night, and a completely different experience from seeing it in the daylight (with many fellow tourists competing for picture-taking space). Enjoying some high-quality, freshly brewed coffee during the evening only made it that much better.


And do you want to hear a secret I can divulge?

Even though Dan avoids coffee like the plague, he tried a baby sip on the tour to be polite. His reaction? “This ain’t half bad.” So there you have it. If Dan even enjoyed the coffee, then this must be one of the best tours in Costa Rica.

Have you ever searched for wildlife at night? What did you find? What’s your favorite critter from above? Would you get close to that tarantula?


As always, thanks for your comments below!


And in case you missed it, you can check out all our awesome wildlife finds in Part 1 here.

Meet: Casey Siemasko

Casey Siemasko is a blogger, content marketer, and co-founder of A Cruising Couple. She has been living and traveling outside of the US full-time since 2011. She finds her life inspiration in exploring the world and seeks to find the magic in the most ordinary of places.


  1. You really are NOT going to share the coffee secret?!!!!!! Love you anyhow. Dan, the pics are awesome!!!!!!!!

    • Hahaha we thought we would leave the perfect incentive to sign up for the tour ;) Maybe we’ll let you in over Christmas though :)

  2. I’m obsessed with frogs, so naturally I think he’s adorable! I don’t think I’d like that stick bug though, urrggghhh…
    I WANT to know that secret now! Bah!
    I would most definitely love a tour like this. I love doing activities like this at night. There is something so fun and adventurous about it all!
    Colleen Brynn recently posted…Quiet Details In SuzdalMy Profile

    • That’s too funny about the stick bug! It really does seem so much more adventurous at night, even if we did just stay on the coffee grounds the whole time! And sorry about the secret- I’m not very good with secrets though, so maybe I’ll end up spilling before all these Costa Rica posts are done with ;P

  3. I’m the biggest coffee lover in the world. I guess there is nothing more delicious than having a cup of an authentic coffee in Costa Rica <3.
    Agness recently posted…Dim Sum: Culinary Vertigo in Hong KongMy Profile

    • The coffee here really is so, so good! It’s amazing the difference in a really good brew :)

  4. Love this post! Although I can’t load all of the photos from Iran, I do like the Owl!

    Our favourite coffee to date was in Morocco where a big latte was about 90 cents! We drank more joe than water!

    We have searched for wildlife at night in Borneo and saw some little croc babies and a bunch of birds. Looks like CR is the place to do it!

    Good post guys, looking forward to more.

    • Ahhhh just another reason why I want to return to Morocco! When we were there, I didn’t get to experience nearly as much as I wanted to. I bet croc babies are so cute :) Thanks for taking the effort to check out the photos from Iran. Can’t wait to hear more about your journey there!!

  5. that tour really looked awesome especially that you saw a tarantula and the stickies – these lil long guys are everywhere lol

    but dang! we always forget to book the night tours in monteverde when we’re there – always going for the treks and swings lol

    hope you guys are still enjoying costa – btw are you still here?

    Pura vida!

    • we are! we’re currently in puerto viejo, then heading down to bocas and around to corcovado :) we leave on december 10. and I don’t blame you for always choosing the treks and swings- those are great too!!

  6. Aww, that sloth with spiky hair… I can’t even! Here is a sloth gif in return: http://bit.ly/1hLi4cG

    • I really was not expecting so many people to be this interested in the secret! Perhaps look for it in a future blog post :)

  7. That is a scary-looking sloth! I guess maybe the combination of hanging upside down with its hair all messed up and the flash illuminating it strangely, it looks kinda evil. Or maybe that’s just me. I’m no coffee drinker either, but I’ve tried a few sips of Zab’s coffee now and then (mocachino goes down the best!) here in Ecuador and it’s not bad. I guess it being among the highest quality possible makes it much more palatable!
    Sam recently posted…Eco Hotel Review: Samai Ocean Lodge Spa, MontañitaMy Profile

    • Hahaha evil sloths! Next Hollywood hit maybe? I don’t know how you non-coffee drinkers survive. Tho a mocachino is at least a start!

  8. Love that sloth! They are the funniest animals. But one sight of that tarantula and I would have been running in the other directions! Have you guys seen a lot of spiders there?
    Heather recently posted…How to Quickly Comprehend Chinese While in ChinaMy Profile

    • Actually the spiders haven’t been all that bad! There are so many mosquitoes tho that I wouldn’t mind a few more spiders! It is kind of creepy to know those spiders are just out on the loose tho :o

  9. Have I ever searched for wildlife at night? Nope. Would I get close to that tarantula? NOPE. ;)

    • Dan doesn’t drink coffee AT ALL, but I still got him to admit the coffee on the tour was “tolerable” :-p I found it amazing!

  10. Oh god, the tarantula! I’m moving to CR in a week and I am not sure if I can deal with the bugs.

    • That’s awesome! Where in Costa Rica? Yea, it’s best just not to think about the tarantulas ;)

  11. Pleeeeeaaaassseeeee share the coffee secret! I am OBSESSED with java….I need to know all things java.



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