Where do I begin to tell you about the most amazing, magical and enlightening place I’ve ever traveled to? The Toucan Rescue Ranch in San Isidro, Costa Rica is a place I want to go back to every year to watch as it grows.
Leslie and Jorge, the owners of the ranch, are doing an amazing thing for their local wildlife and it’s incredible that by opening their home to visitors both human and animal, they are helping our planet in a truly selfless way. The hubby actually found this place for me and I think he used it to convince me he could/should drive in Costa Rica. (Or maybe he truly knows what an animal lover I am and indulges.) I’m so thankful. From the night we checked in when Leslie knocked on our door and asked if we wanted to watch her feed the sloths (yes yes yes!) to the morning and night walks to visit the animals, the guys (yes, all the guys!) and I couldn’t have been more thrilled.
Leslie values each of the animals stories-where they came from, what happened to them, where they are found and how they can be rehabilitated and if possible, released. It seems like she will do anything possible to try and find answers to tough questions that might help the creatures that arrive on her doorstep even when cost, time or her sleep might be affected. The night before we left two more babies arrived: helpless little toucans who’s tree fell down in a storm. I can’t wait to hear how their story unfolds.
As a mamma who had babies who lived in the NICU, being at the ranch reminded me of the hospital nursery I spent so many weeks in when the boys were small and how each life-threatening moment also needed to be met with patience and love. There is so much love in this community and I felt so much peace in the few days I spent there. This is the type of place I truly want to help.
And this is truly one place I want to return to one day. It’s amazing how traveling can impact your heart in such profound ways-I did not intend to fall in love with Costa Rica as much as I did when I planned this trip-but being here made me realize how much my family and I need nature, friendly people, good food and experiences like this in order to survive.