Tomás and Marcelo are two Costa Rican biologists who founded deep travel, ecotourism company, the Oropopo Experience, based in San José, Costa Rica. They have a “strong passion for the understanding and protection of tropical environments, as well as sharing the scientific information with people”. Their mission is to “provide authentic experiences around ecosystems and communities of Costa Rica, highly focused in biology, human quality and operational sustainability”.

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“If you’re living a life very far from the natural world, find a way to get a little bit closer to it because that’s truly the way to start understanding things and will [make you] a more sustainable person”
– Tomás Calleja Apéstegui

We spent two weeks hanging out with these two passionate biologists in San Jose as well as the jungles and towns of rural Costa Rica. It was quite the epic adventure and at the end we sat down with Tomas and Celo to chat about the following. We recorded this episode on the banks of the Tortugeuro river so don’t be alarmed as you hear the sounds of birds, boats and locals going about their business!

  • Celo and Tomás’ backgrounds and early exposure to rivers, beaches, jungles and farm life in Costa Rica (~02:00)
  • What made each of these Biologists decide to dedicate their careers to the natural world (~03:15)
  • Why nature is so important to Tomás and Celo, given their exposure to ecosystems through their studies (~04:15)
  • Most memorable experiences with wildlife from Celo (~09:35) and Tomás (~11:15)
  • Initiatives in Costa Rica that the team are most excited about including the National Park System and PES (Payment for Environmental Services) (~14:00)
  • Status of the government from an environmental standpoint in Costa Rica including the new Environmental Minister, the upcoming focus on renewable transport and problems the government faces (~17:00)
  • A summary of the deep Oropopo Experiences that the team offers tourists and locals (~20:40)
  • The story behind the name “Oropopo” and how the Oropopo team  (~26:00)
  • What’s next for the Oropopo Experience (~28:30)
  • Advice on living a more connected life (~29:45)

“I have my binoculars, I will have them always because anytime, you know Tortugueero is a place where a Manatee could just come out… you have to be prepared”
Tomás Calleja Apéstegui


Oropopo Experience

Sustainable Jungle Podcast - Oropopo Experience - mindfulness and deep travel in costa rica #deeltravel #sustainabletravel #costarica #wildlife

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