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Jungle Crocodile Safari

Jungle Crocodile Safari

Destination: Jaco, Playa Hermosa - Puntarenas, Esterillos


  • Float down the Tarcoles River on Safari
  • Get up close to the river's 2,000 crocs
  • Learn about the native flora and fauna


  • Location : 10 miles north of Jaco
  • Hours : 8:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.
  • Price : $35 per person

This isn't Disneyland's safari tour with animatronic crocodiles, no. You'll have a chance to check for sure as you grip the tail of an 18-foot crocodile while it sunbathes on the shore of the Tarcoles River. Nicknamed, Osama, it's one of the river's territorial adult male American crocs that's thought to be around 60 years old, is among the largest reptiles on the planet and needs to eat only once every six months. And that's only one example of the 2,000 crocodiles that terrorize the waters of the Tarcoles River.

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The Tarcoles passes through San Jose, forms the northern border of the Carara National Park and meets with the Pacific Ocean just a mile upriver from the start of the Crocodile Jungle Safari Tour. Riverboat tours on the Tarcoles last around two hours and lead guests up and down river along the shore, sand bars and mangroves in search of wildlife.

On the tour, guides point some of the 58 different bird species that live in the area like the turquoise-browed motmot, the yellow-headed caracara and the endangered roseate spoonbill. Waterfowl scratch at the muddy shallows beside crocodiles swimming in the river alongside the boat and crawling on shore with mouths open-wide revealing rows of jagged teeth beside.

In the tour's most spectacular show of courage/insanity, guides feed the crocodiles from the riverbank. The boat captain, a brave soul, holds a handful of raw chicken over the water while crocodiles leap to catch the morsels in their mouths.

Departure & Return

  • Departure point : Tour departs from all major hotels in Herradura, Jaco, Playa Hermosa Puntarenas
  • Departure time : Hotel pickup is between 20 and 50 minutes before tour start time depending on hotel location.
  • Return details : Tour returns to original departure point between three and four hours after tour start time

Jungle Crocodile Safari in Pictures

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