The National Birdwatching Tourism Board is working hard to professionalize the tourism sector dedicated to birdwatching in order to increase the number of tourists visiting various regions. According to the organization, in 2019, approximately 750,000 tourists carried out birdwatching tourism activities, with 200,000 of them coming to Costa Rica exclusively for birdwatching purposes.
This activity generated revenues of more than $800 million for the country, demonstrating the importance of the sector within the ecotourism industry. Sergio Arias, director of the National Birdwatching Board, stated that this activity has been very popular in the country and that it is necessary to train those involved, so tourists find the ideal conditions.
Information provided by the board showed that a birdwatcher can spend two to three times more than the average tourist, with an average of $200 to $300 per day due to the number of activities and can start at 5:00 a.m. and finish at 10:00 p.m. In order to make the most of this opportunity, the board is working closely with the Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT) to promote the country as the perfect destination for birdwatching.
Additionally, the board aims to generate tourism opportunities in non-traditional areas such as Turrialba, Coto Brus, the Osa Peninsula, Caño Negro, and the Nicoya Peninsula.
This would be extremely beneficial for these areas, as it would generate employment through sustainable tourism, benefiting local communities. To ensure that birdwatchers have the best experience, companies in this business should implement well-labeled trails of medium difficulty, viewpoints, platforms, and feeding stations, as well as skilled local guides.
By improving the current conditions and having a well-trained industry that offers high-quality services, Costa Rica will become an outstanding birdwatching destination.
As reported by the ICT, 64% of tourists who visited Costa Rica in 2019 chose the country to enjoy ecotourism, with 12% mentioning they had enjoyed birdwatching and even had special equipment.