Our partnership with regional conservation NGO’s has made Hotel Punta Islita's eco-system more colorful and fascinating. The surrounding tropical dry forest is thriving, evidenced by the healthy numbers of howler monkeys, large iguanas, and exotic birds. Two standout projects have jumpstarted the recovery of sea turtles in nearby Camaronal Beach and red macaw populations in the Nicoya region.
The most recent program involves a full partnership with The Ara Project. Jumpstarted in the 1980's by a retired expat American couple The Ara Project is now staffed by a dedicated group of scientists, administrators, and volunteers who have successfully reintroduced close to a hundred red and green macaw specimens in three wildlife release sites in Costa Rica. Hotel Punta Islita is proud to host the program’s headquarters, donating a plot of land, a specialized aviary cage, living quarters for a biologist, and the biologist's wages. The recently- inaugurated Lapa Lookout is an education and viewing center where guests can learn and participate in the recovery and release efforts.
The months of September, October, and early November bring about a fascinating yearly ritual when female sea turtles swim along hundreds of kilometers to return to the Costa Rican beaches that once saw them head out to the ocean as hatchlings.
Globally endangered sea turtles are the quiet heroes of marine and beach environments. Some species are sea grass grazers (like manatees), helping to optimize the living habitats of key food chain populations. Egg laying and hatching on the beach provide essential nutrients for the sand dune vegetation that helps prevent erosion. These functions, essential to the health of coastal ecosystems, have prompted aggressive conservation and recovery efforts. Hotel Punta Islita in Costa Rica has fully supported such initiatives as led by the Camaronal Foundation. Thanks to these efforts, Leatherbacks, Kemp Ridley, Green, Hawksbill, and Black turtles have once again returned in robust numbers.