CLICK HERE FOR A $100 DISCOUNT ON ANY TOUR!

La Paz Waterfall Gardens, Costa Rica

by Scott Setterberg November 08, 2018

La Paz Waterfall Gardens, Costa Rica

The first stop on all our Costa Rica photography tours is the spectacular La Paz Waterfall Gardens near Poas Volcano National Park.  This incredible destination combines well-developed hiking trails, five rainforest waterfalls, and an animal sanctuary with over one hundred species of wildlife in a butterfly observatory, free-range ranarium (frogs), serpentarium (snakes), jungle cat exhibit, monkey enclosure, tropical aviary, and hummingbird gardens.  

Red-Eyed Tree Frog in Costa Rica
As you step into the butterfly observatory, you are immediately transported into a joyous fantasy world, as thousands of gorgeous Blue Morpho butterflies flutter about without a care in the world.  The monkey and jungle cat enclosures allow you see several species of jungle acrobats, including howler and white-faced monkeys, as well as fierce felines like the elusive jaguar and powerful puma.  In the aviary you can feed friendly toucans by hand and the hummingbird gardens attract twenty-six different species of colorful, fast-flying wizards.  

Blue Morpho Butterfly
In the serpentarium, you get a close-up view of some of the most beautiful and deadly snakes in Costa Rica, including the much-feared Fer-De-Lance. This aggressive, nocturnal pit viper is responsible for most of the snake bites in Costa Rica each year.  The free-range ranarium allows you to interact with the iconic Red-Eyed Tree Frog and see a variety of colorful, tiny, Poison Dart Frogs.   

Poison Dart Frog in Costa RicaLa Paz also hosts some of the best waterfalls in Costa Rica and the first one to greet you is Templo.  A nice footbridge, small beach area, and viewing platforms provide endless photo opportunities of the eighty-five-foot-tall spectacle.  After a few dozen steps down a metal staircase, the towering Magia Blanca appears, and at 120 feet, it's the tallest waterfall at La Paz.  Like Templo, Magia Blanca can be viewed from several vantage points, one merely twenty feet from the thundering cascade.  Encantada is third in the series of tropical waterfalls, and with full frame camera sensors, the inverted wedge-shaped beauty fills the frame nicely with a 24mm lens. Pro Tip: If you're shooting with a DX camera sensor, make sure to bring an ultra wide angle lens or you won't be able to fit Encantada into your frame. I recommend the Nikon 12-24mm f4 lens.  

Encantada Waterfall at La Paz Waterfall Gardens in Costa Rica
Tucked behind Encantada is the appropriately titled Escondido (which translates to Hidden), and without a 200mm lens, it's tough to photograph on it's own.  It does however accentuate Encantada nicely when photographed together.  Last but certainly not least on the waterfall trail is the powerful La Paz waterfall.  This roaring, spray-spewing giant spills into a raging river below and there are excellent creative compositions to be found here.

La Paz Waterfall River
La Paz Waterfall Gardens is an incredible cloud forest attraction that combines dozens of species of Costa Rica wildlife with sensational jungle waterfalls.  This fantastic location starts your photo tour off with a bang, and things only get better from there.  

Check out all our photography tours in Costa Ricareview the itineraries and dates, decide which photo tour works best for you, and reserve your spot.  Note that some tours still have early registration discounts.

See you soon in Costa Rica!  Pura Vida!



Scott Setterberg
Scott Setterberg

Author





More Articles

Rincon de la Vieja, Costa Rica
Rincon de la Vieja, Costa Rica

by Scott Setterberg January 27, 2020

Located near Liberia, Costa Rica, Rincon de la Vieja National Park boasts an active volcano, natural hot springs, gorgeous waterfalls, and excellent hiking trails. In stark contrast to other areas of Costa Rica with much cooler, wet climates, Rincon de la Vieja is hot, dry, and arid.  It's surprising to find spectacular waterfalls in this atmosphere but there are several beauties that stand out.  

Continue Reading

Capitalizing on Costa Rica's Climate
Capitalizing on Costa Rica's Climate

by Scott Setterberg December 11, 2019

Costa Rica is a magical land of spectacular natural beauty teeming with jaw-dropping waterfalls, dense jungles, lush rainforests, misty cloud forests, shimmering beaches, towering mountains, active volcanoes, and hundreds of species of exotic wildlife. Costa Rica's tropical climate is largely responsible for the incredible natural beauty and produces seven months of rainfall and year-round high humidity.

Continue Reading

Creative Composition: Natural Frames
Creative Composition: Natural Frames

by Scott Setterberg November 01, 2019

Many times we arrive at a location that's super popular and overshot, and if we shoot like everyone else, from the same spots as everyone else, we end up with the same images as everyone else.  To get around this, I encourage clients to get off the beaten path and look for different ways to create unique images.

Continue Reading