Playa Blanca, Golfo Dulce, Costa Rica

Jan 31, 2019 - National Geographic Quest

This was our second day in Costa Rica, and we went all out to make good use of our time here! Today included hikes through the forest of the lush Osa Peninsula and a demonstration in gold panning. Such activities are often hosted by locals, who are generous with their time and are eager to share their culture with us. This all takes place in the gorgeous and tropical Costa Rican atmosphere of the Osa Penisula and Golfo Dulce. Being 80 percent natural reserve, these areas are testament to the preservation of Costa Rican ecology and culture—a fact not lost on our guests.

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About the Author

Federico Chacón


Federico Chacón, or “Fico” as he is better known by his friends, started guiding one-day nature tours on weekends and holidays at the age of 18 right at the time he started studies at the University of Costa Rica. It was just a part-time job, that was mainly his brother’s idea, but little by little it grew to become his career and his passion. 

About the Photographer

Carlos Calvo Obando

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

Carlos is a freelance wildlife photographer and photography instructor from Costa Rica. Passionate about travel and education, he also works as a certified naturalist guide on the beaches, jungles, and mountains of that beautiful tropical paradise. With 20 years of experience leading groups and making images and portraits of Costa Rican creatures and landscapes, he loves to share his knowledge and tricks with enthusiasm, simplicity, and a good sense of humor.

About the Videographer

Matthew Ritenour

Video Chronicler

Matthew grew up on the Gulf of Mexico, where a love of geography, culture and history were instilled at a young age. He studied anthropology at California State University, Chico, and soon began working at the Advanced Laboratory for Visual Anthropology (ALVA), a documentary production studio that focuses on sharing the results of anthropological research with the public. As a cinematographer and editor at ALVA, he documented research on everything from the effects of drought in California, to looted petroglyphs in the Sierra Nevada high desert, and the global trade in emeralds.

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