Tamarindo Mangrove Estuary Boat & Kayak Tours
Jungle Boat Safari, see nature in all her glory
Explore unique mangrove ecosystems! One of the world’s most rich and biologically diverse ecosystems is that of mangrove forests. Mangroves are a collection of trees with astonishing unique root systems that grow only in salt water. The roots attach to the silt in the bottom of saltwater estuaries that are protected from the ocean’s waves, and create a twisted and complicated habitat that protects some very interesting wildlife.
There are two excellent ways to explore this wondrous mangrove ecosystem, located right in Tamarindo: from the safety and comfort of a covered powerboat, or by getting right down to the water’s level and paddling through the meandering channels in a kayak. Whether you’re visiting us as a family, a couple or a group of friends, Cala Luna’s Jungle Boat Safari tour through Tamarindo’s estuaries and mangroves is a fantastically educational experience to help you discover this lush and sometimes eerie landscape.
Along the way, you’re likely to run into the amazing wildlife that calls this mangrove forest home, including caimans, snakes, monkeys, iguanas and a wide variety of exotic birds. Your bilingual guide will point out animals during your tour and give you plenty of information about each species, as well as teach you about these fascinating trees, facts about this waterway where saltwater mixes with fresh, and the threats that are putting this amazing ecosystem at risk.
Your half-day tour starts with transportation from Cala Luna Boutique Hotel & Villas to the launching point just a few minutes away, at the mouth of the Tamarindo estuary, where you’ll get comfortable in our covered power boat or in a kayak, and at the end we’ll drop you back off at our reception hall.
Included: transportation, bilingual nature guide, water
What to bring: sunscreen, insect repellent, hat, sunglasses, camera
Suited for: all ages
By boat or by kayak, immerse yourself in one of the planet’s most bizarre habitats
Take your family on a safe and exciting trip to explore an exciting slice of nature. By exploring the Tamarindo estuary’s network of mangrove forests by power boat, you’ll be able to sit in comfort under the shade as you learn thrilling facts from our English speaking guide. In addition, you’ll feel confident that you, your partner and your children are safe from the bizarre wildlife, including crocodiles, snakes and caimans, that call this strange ecosystem home. We’ll move slowly through the watery channels to ensure we don’t create excess noise – greatly improving the likelihood of seeing rare marine animals and birds along the way.
If being down at the level of the water’s surface appeals to you and you’re in good physical condition, taking the tour by kayak is often said to be the best way to explore the waterways. As you paddle the estuary by kayak behind your guide, you’ll feel especially close to nature. Be sure to look just beneath the surface next to your kayak, where you may see fish swimming alongside you as you glide along. Thanks to their maneuverability, the kayaks will take you into tighter channels where boats can’t go, so not only can you bask in the uninterrupted sounds of this jungle-like wildlife refuge, you may catch a glimpse of creatures that other tours can’t access.
About mangroves and estuaries on Costa Rica’s Pacific coast
When you arrive in Tamarindo, you may notice that most of the beaches you see around Guanacaste have estuaries. These are rivers that originate inland, but their mouth empties into the ocean. In these estuaries, freshwater from Costa Rica’s mountains mixes with salt water from the ocean, creating a one-of-a-kind habitat for several species of reptiles, fish and birds.
Mangroves’ roots attach to the silty bottoms of estuaries, and twice a day when the tide rises, the mangrove forests become completely flooded. In Tamarindo, the mangroves are always flooded because the tide never goes down to the bottom, so our mangroves live perpetually in water.
The tangled roots of the mangrove trees stop the movement of sediments that flow with the tides and help these minerals settle on the bottom of the estuary. The roots also impede the rushing action of the tide, creating calm waters that act as a great habitat for fish and the animals that eat them, such as crocodiles, birds, turtles and more.
Any time of the year, Tamarindo’s mangrove forest is an amazing place to explore and our versatile tour is the ideal way to discover this unique ecosystem.