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A Costa Rican Eco Adventure: The Playa Ostional Sea Turtle Tour

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If you have always wanted to see turtles come ashore to nest, then plan your next Costa Rica vacation for Nosara. The Southern Nicoya Peninsula is home to the largest nesting area of Pacific Ridley Sea Turtles, the protected 8 kilometer beach of Playa Ostional.

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Playa Ostional is approximately 8 kilometers (about 5 miles) north of Playa Nosara, and there is a Costa Rica eco adventure tour available where you can go and see the turtles as they arrive.

Arriving from July to December in their hundreds, these Costa Rican sea turtles begin to come together offshore approximately two months before nesting season. August to October is the peak arrival time for nesting sea turtles in Playa Ostional.

The Pacific Ridley sea turtles choose Playa Ostional because it is relatively flat beach and is free of debris. The largest recorded arrival of Costa Rica turtles in Ostional took place in 1995 when an estimated 500,000 females came ashore.

Inline with sustainable Costa Rica tourism legislation and the protection of the country’s biodiversity, the Ostional Wildlife Refuge

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was created to protect one of the world’s most important sea turtle nesting sites. The nesting areas are patrolled by guards and tours are controlled to ensure their preservation. While the Costa Rican tour guides carry a small flashlight to help them navigate, cameras, videos and flash photography are strictly forbidden, as the turtles are extremely sensitive creatures.

These Costa Rican sea turtles, otherwise known as the Olive Ridley, have a heart shaped shell which can reach up to 60 to 70 centimeters when adult and rarely weigh more than 50 kilograms. The Olive Ridley sea turtle is carnivorous, feeding mainly on jellyfish, shrimp, rock lobsters and crabs.

Its not just the visiting turtles that are abundant in the Nicoya Peninsula, with a lush tropical landscape of tropical flora this part of Costa Rica is home to permanent residents including iguanas, howler monkeys, coatis, toucans, macaw and humming birds.

If you want to take the Playa Ostional Turtle Tour during your vacation in Costa Rica, contact Escape Villas at or toll free at 1-888-771-2976 for more information.