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Arenal Volcano National Park
Iguana in Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve
Miraflores Locks of the Panama Canal
Caño Negro Riverboat Safari
Three Toed Sloth
El Establo Mountain Hotel
Departs: November 13th, 2021 Tour Dates & Pricing
Tropical treasures and unique wildlife unfold before our eyes in two Central American countries. On the first leg of the tour we will explore Costa Rica’s extraordinary tropical forests and wildlife at several destinations including Poas Volcano National Park, the Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge, and the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. In Panama, we will visit the Pacific and Atlantic oceans in one day as we traverse the Panama Canal on the spacious decks of The Pacific Queen. Take in the sights of Panama City and get acquainted with Panama’s indigenous culture at Embera Quera, where friendly natives demonstrate their way of life with music, dance, and handmade crafts.
Hosted By: Mike Miller
Former WISN TV Anchor
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Day 1 : Fly to San José
Today we board our flight to the tropical paradise of Costa Rica.
Upon arrival we meet our local guide and check-in to our beautifully-appointed hotel in San José.
Day 2 : Doka Coffee & Butterfly Gardens
Enjoy a delicious breakfast every morning of our tour! Our sightseeing begins at the Doka Coffee Estate where we discover the history of traditional coffee growers. Begin with picking ripened coffee berries and follow production to the roasting hall where fresh heavenly scents fill the air. Costa Rica’s rich history with coffee dates back to the 1700s and the celebrated bean is a centerpiece of Costa Rican economics and culture to this day. Here you get access to some of the best coffee in the world.
After, witness the metamorphosis of 15 species of butterflies from egg to adult at the Doka Butterfly Gardens. Have a chance to get a close-up look at these colorful, incredible creatures.
Enjoy views of the tropical landscape on our way to Arenal.
We then check-in to our hotel in the Arenal area for a two-night stay.
Day 3 : Wildlife Refuge Tour
Offering a glimpse into one of the richest and most biologically diverse ecosystems in Costa Rica, the Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge and Rio Frio houses monkeys, iguanas, sloths, turtles and more. This wildlife sanctuary is one of the world’s most important wetlands for protecting endangered species. We gain access to the refuge via the village of Los Chiles, near the Nicaraguan border. Board a river adventure boat and float along on a safari through a brilliant tropical rain forest and pastures en route to a fascinating marshland.
We return to the Arenal area with dinner on our own this evening.
Day 4 : Arenal Volcano National Park
Choose your own adventure with a leisurely hike on paved trails along the base of the Mountain of Fire, or choose a more active trail for avid hikers.
This evening we check-in to our accommodations in the Monteverde area.
Day 5 : Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve
You may choose to enjoy an included hike through Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve this morning. Be sure to keep an eye out for beautiful wildlife and a spectacular waterfall.
Next, learn about the unique amphibians and reptiles of Costa Rica at Herpetarium Adventures. View exotic frogs, toads and snakes up close.
Afterwards, explore the pleasant oceanside town of Puntarenas on our way to San José.
Day 6 : Welcome to Panama
Say adios to the lush beauty of Costa Rica and board a short flight to Panama. We arrive in Panama City and are greeted at the airport by our local guide.
Then, we check-in to our Panama City hotel and enjoy an evening of relaxation.
Day 7 : Panama City Tour
Expansive Panama City lays out before us as we take the day for a city tour.
Begin with a visit to the striking Miraflores Locks of the Panama Canal. Tour the Miraflores Locks Museum and watch ships passing through the chambers of this iconic feat of engineering.
Witness historic Casco Viejo, Panama City’s Old Quarter originally founded by the Spanish and later plundered by the famously dreaded pirate Henry Morgan. On our tour, appreciate parks and plazas that seamlessly combine Italian, French, and Spanish colonial architecture including the magnificent golden altar at San José Church.
We also visit Casco Antiguo, seamlessly combining Italian, French, and Spanish colonial architecture including the magnificent Golden Altar.
Our tour ends with a visit to Panama City’s colorful Biomuseo, its galleries filled with artful exhibits showcasing the area’s biodiversity and natural history. We return to our hotel with dinner on our own.
Day 8 : Panama Canal Full Transit
Travel from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean all in the same day! On the Pacific side, take in the sweeping sands of the Bay of Panama and the towering skyline of Panama City before passing under the Bridge of the Americas. We then board the Pacific Queen to begin our incredible journey through the locks where lakes and rivers traverse the waterway. Our full-day trip through carved sections of the Continental Divide provide immense history and geological wonder.
Day 9 : Embera Quera Community
Captivating culture and striking scenery await us today. We reach the Embera Quera Indigenous Community by a scenic boat ride. Upon arrival in the village, a local narrator teaches us about their culture, language, and way of life. Captivating local music and dances are demonstrated before shopping their selection of handmade crafts.
Our day ends with an included Holiday Vacations Farewell Dinner and folkloric show with traditional Panamanian music and dancing.
Day 10 : Return Home
Fly home with marvelous memories of our vacation in Central America.
November 13th, 2021 - November 22nd, 2021
Price Per Person
Final Payment Date: 08/10/2021
WISN TV Pickup Locations:
Bayside, WI - McDonalds
Brookfield, WI - Best Western
Germantown, WI - Country Inn & Suites
Johnson Creek, WI - Pine Cone Café
Kenosha, WI - McDonalds
Milwaukee, WI - Radisson Hotel Milwaukee Airport
Oconomowoc, WI - Pick N Save
Racine, WI - Petro Station
Sheboygan, WI - McDonalds
Waukesha, WI - McDonalds
Wauwatosa, WI - Radisson Hotel Milwaukee West
West Bend, WI - AmericInn
Chicago, IL - O'Hare International Airport
Mike has been a popular TV newsman in Milwaukee for more than three decades. He is the only person ever to anchor at all three of the “Big Three” local stations. Mike retired in 2010 from ABC network affiliate WISN-TV, after seven years of anchoring and reporting. Previously, he worked at Milwaukee’s CBS station for 12 years and the NBC station for 13 years. Mike was inducted into the Milwaukee Media Hall of Fame in October 2011 and was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Emmy Award. Only 15 people in Milwaukee TV have won both of these prestigious awards.
He married his 7th grade sweetheart, Mary Anne, and they have three grown children and six grandchildren. Mike spends much of his free time as the lead singer for a rock & roll band. He and Mary Anne also enjoy camping, swimming, golf, tennis, hiking, skiing and hunting for antiques.
Join them and WISN-TV viewers on this exciting vacation!
Tour days tend to be shorter in length, at a relaxed pace, and include lots of unscheduled time for leisure. Expect standing and walking for extended periods of time on flat surfaces, mostly low altitudes, and consistent temperatures.
Tour days usually move at a leisurely pace. Some days’ scheduled activities last longer than others. Expect standing and walking for long periods of time on occasionally uneven terrain. You may experience changes in altitude or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a consistent pace, and may include long travel days. Expect standing and walking for long periods of time on uneven surfaces. Some destinations may have changes in altitude and/or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a brisk pace, and may include lengthy travel days. Expect long periods of walking and standing on uneven surfaces. Scheduled activities may require physical effort or have distinct changes in altitude or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a vigorous pace, and may include lengthy travel days. Expect long periods of walking and standing on rough surfaces. Scheduled activities may require physical effort or have distinct changes in altitude or temperature.