Costa Rica & Panama Expedition Team
Share the adventure with dedicated experts
Over the 40+ years of our expedition history, the quality of our veteran staff, and their companionship is the reason the Lindblad name is known and respected for top-quality expeditions. Together with National Geographic, there is no better team anywhere.
The team composition
Every expedition sails with a veteran expedition leader and a hand-picked team of naturalists. Each naturalist is deeply knowledgeable about Costa Rica and Panama and is dedicated to sharing their passion for the region with you. Other key members of the team include: a Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic certified photo instructor, and sometimes a National Geographic expert. Together our Panama and Costa Rica travel guides will provide you with a greater understanding and appreciation of this exceptional place. Since some Costa Rica and Panama departures are Photo Expeditions, we encourage you to read about this unique opportunity.
More specialties and personalities
You are always part of a small group, with a ratio of one naturalist to every 12 guests. Our excellent staff-to-guest ratio ensures a healthy diversity of naturalist specialties—marine biology, botany, cetaceans, primates, ornithology, and more—and personalities. You are never directed into groups. You’re free to gravitate to the naturalists whose interests mirror your own. Our Costa Rica and Panama travel guides are dedicated to making each day of your expedition uniquely yours, and deeply rewarding.
Featured Costa Rica & Panama Team Members
Cristian is a Panamanian born in Chile. He grew up in Panama City until the age of 19 when he returned to Chile to go to college where he received a degree in metallurgic civil engineering. Since 1995 he has been working as a freelance naturalist in Panama. Specializing in bird watching and ecology, he also has a passion for indigenous cultures, hiking and trekking. He is a certified scuba diver and is often found exploring coral reefs along the Caribbean coast of Panama.
Gustavo was born in 1970 in San Jose, the youngest of three children. After finishing high school, he became interested in sciences and languages and enrolled at the University of Costa Rica, where he studied basic studies of biosciences (1988-1990), modern languages (1990-1992) and some courses in natural resources management at UNED. During this time Gustavo became fluent in both English and Italian. His work experience started at age 10 when he was a host of a television program for children (1981-1982). During this time he also harvested coffee in a small rural town during school vacations.
Isabel Salas Vindas
Isa Salas is a Costa Rica born biologist, who loves her country and teaching about it. Known for her professionalism and experience in the field of animal behavior, Isa earned her master's degree in biology from the University of Costa Rica, where she also engaged in research for the chemistry and biology departments. Isa has carried out specialized projects on mantled howler monkeys for Costa Rica’s National Institute of Biodiversity (INBio), and is one of the country’s experts on howler monkey sexual and social behavior.
Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor
Nicknamed “Indio” (Indian) because of his powers of observation and quiet nature, José has almost two decades of experience working as a naturalist and photography guide; as well as being recognized as an expert birder and nature photographer in Costa Rica. Costa Rica is rich in biodiversity — over 893 bird species have been recorded in the country. Since very young José spent all of his free time in the outdoors in the forest, where he soon fell in love with the birds. He particularly enjoys listening to their calls, and watching their behavior. Oddly enough, another one of Jose’s passions is science and technology, and because of this, he was among the first in Costa Rica to experiment with digital photography. As the technology quickly improved so did his love for it. He truly believes that nature photography is the perfect combination of both of his passions.