Costa Rica is home to 5% of the world’s wildlife between the mountains, beaches, rainforest, and everywhere in between. For such a small destination, it offers some of the finest and most varied wildlife viewing on the planet. Meet 10 of Costa Rica’s most exotic animals!
Many people come to Costa Rica specifically to see these small, clever animals with iconic black fur and white faces. These monkeys can live up to a surprising 54 years of age and spend their entire lives in groups of 40 or more.
These large, colorful birds are easily distinguished by their white chest and wings, bluish-black feathers, and bright orange beak. This competitive scavenger can grow a wingspan of six and a half feet across!
These adorable cats have beautiful, soft features but a purely wild attitude. They’re only twice the size of an average house cat but have similar markings to a leopard. These nocturnal felines are very secretive and rarely seen in the wild.
Red-Eyed Tree Frog
Costa Rica is home to more than 150 known species of frogs and toads but the dazzling red-eyed tree frog is perhaps one of the country’s most iconic and famous residents.
Costa Rica is well known for being one of the easiest sloth-spotting destinations. These unique tree-dwellers are the world’s slowest mammals and sleep up to 20 hours a day. Two of the six known species of sloth live in Costa Rica.
There are six different species of toucan living in Costa Rica, these tropical birds are known for their colorful and large bill, which in some large species measures more than half the length of the body.
This long-nosed brother of the raccoon can be found as far north as Southern Arizona and stretch down into Northern Argentina. These social animals typically travel around in groups of 10 to 30 individuals.
Also known as the “Jesus Christ Lizard,” for their ability to run on top of water, these reptiles spend most of their time in trees, but they’re never far from a body of water.
These vibrantly colored and very talkative birds live in the coastal forests of Costa Rica, they mate for life and can live as long as 60 years.
Although tapirs eat mostly fruit, leaves, and twigs, playing a very important role in dispersing seeds throughout the forest, these gentle giants can grow to be six feet long and 800 pounds!