No one lives on the island of Tortuga. The white sand
is immaculate, the palm trees bend in the wind like a
postcard, and the shimmering blue water spreads forth
into the Golfo de Nicoyo. Though named after the Spanish
word for turtle, you are far more likely to run into the
many species of birds that call the island home. The epitome
of a tropical island beach, Tortuga Island Costa Rica
is one of the most visited locations throughout the entire
country. Just over 3 square miles, the gentle coast offers
some of the most sought after spots for snorkeling, swimming
and generally lazing about the beach. Tortuga Island can
only be reached by tour, however, and during the weekends
crowds tend to glut the main docking areas, especially
during the winter months when tour operators are busiest.
But during the week, the serene beaches of Tortuga Island
Costa Rica are a required stop for anyone seeking the
perfect tropical island vacation.
Nearly all of the tours headed for the island of Tortuga are based out of San Jose. They include both ends of the two hour trip to Puntarenas along with the lolling boat ride out into the Gulf. Customers on these tours usually want for nothing, as their spacious yacht cuts through the languid Pacific Ocean. Lunch and snorkel rentals are also included in the tour price, which can range upwards of $100.
Alternate tours can be arranged from Puntarenas itself, and from the nearby docks of Montezuma and Tambor. These tours vary in travel time and length of stay on the island, but they are reasonably longer than those originating from the Costa Rican capital, and sometimes for a fraction of the price. Along the way, lucky travelers will spot the region"s little-seen whale sharks who often hide out in the calm waters near Tortuga Island Costa Rica. Swimming and snorkeling just off the island"s pristine beaches are two of the main reasons for visit, however, and tourists are perfectly safe from shark attack and will be treated to a rainbow array of tropical fishes beneath the ocean"s surface. The island of Tortuga is an immaculate paradise, and exploration of the lush deciduous forests can be just as rewarding as any snorkeling. Here you will find all kinds of nesting birds, though many of the endangered or rare species are only found on the biological reserves located nearby, where travelers are not allowed.