Toucan Rescue Ranch (San Isidro, Costa Rica)

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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.

Toucan rescue ranch in San Isidro

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.


33 thoughts on “Toucan Rescue Ranch (San Isidro, Costa Rica)

  1. Toucan Rescue Ranch is the best place to go and stay at. I have been there more than 5 times and I love it even more each time. There is always something going on, just sitting on the patio you can see so much wildlife it is insane. Make sure you put this place on your list of vacations or just donate to help.

  2. I love Costa Rica, my hubby and I went there and just did the beach thing… I’m dreaming about going back one day with the kids and will definitely have the Toucan Rescue Ranch on my list of adventures. It is such a beautiful country!

  3. Sounds like it was a fantastic place to visit! We will have to make this one of our future travel stops.

  4. I have heard such great things about Leslie and the ranch from people she knows in Reno, NV who I now know also – BG, Parrot Connection, RAAVE bird club. I’m looking forward to making a trip there in the very near future – maybe this year.

  5. What a great cause and good for you for doing what you can to help such a worthwhile place! Those sloths are adorable! I am definitely putting this in places to visit/stay when we finally make our way to Costa Rica (hopefully soon).

  6. After having spent some extensive time here at the Toucan Rescue Ranch I have only wonderful thoughts and memories to share. Leslie’s commitment to all her critters is unmatched and truly inspirational–exactly what one would hope to see in such a great sanctuary. Both Leslie and Jorge are incredibly kind and generous and the success stories of so many animals they have worked to save warm your heart. This is a wonderful post, thank you for sharing and good luck with your fund raising for them as well!

    All my best,


  7. I have never been to Costa Rica, but hope to visit one day. The Toucan Rescue Ranch will definitely be on my itinerary!

  8. What a lovely idea for fundraising! It takes such a big heart and commitment to run a program like this. I’m so glad that you and the boys got a chance to experience it and to spread the word! <3

  9. From one animal lover to another. This is a wonderful place. I have visited several rescue centers in Costa Rica and this one is on my list (next time) as I regularly follow the blog. My hat goes off to them…..I have a picture in my office of two baby sloths from a rescue center on the Carribean side. There is nothing more precious. Great idea for the fundraiser.

  10. Terumi,

    Wow… Thank you for sharing your love with those beautiful creatures. Warms my soul. Toucans are my most favorite of all birds. I care so much for God’s creatures. I wish you and your beautiful family well.

    Love Kate (Julie and Allison’s cousin )

  11. My family of 4 also stayed at Toucan Rescue Ranch this past August! We had the most wonderful time there — truly magical! I am most grateful to Leslie for everything, and I hope to return someday.

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