Learn something about the world around you with TropicAves


Who we are

TropicAves is a small, owner-operated company

We are a bi-cultural couple who has combined their unique vocations to offer customized nature tours for an authentic adventure in tropical Costa Rica. We can help you design the perfect vacation for your individual preferences and budget. We strive to make our tours fun, educational, and awe-inspiring—we want you to leave Costa Rica as in love with it as we are!

Our promise to you: you will learn something about the world around you, and your trip will be an educational, fun, relaxing, exciting, beautiful, and unforgettable experience. We offer unparalleled insight into Costa Rican culture and wildlife- for all ages and abilities - with as much academic content as you require.

Alexa Stickel

Your knowledgeable nature guide

Alex Jimenez

Your safe, talented driver


Why travel with us?

Environmentally friendly

We use environmentally-friendly, sustainable business practices—we contract local families and businesses wherever possible, support our local parks and reserves, and analyze the sustainability practices of all hotels we consider. We also have a no-paper policy in the office; the only thing we print is your final itinerary. Included in your pricing package is an optional $30 donation to help offset the carbon footprint of your travels. This donation allows us to help reforest within the Three-wattled Bellbird Biological Corridor. To learn more, scroll to the bottom of our "What We Offer" page.

Personal and Flexible

Since we are the owners and operators of TropicAves, we offer unmatched flexibility, personal attention, and quality control, to make your vacation exactly what you want it to be. We offer a unique knowledge base grounded in our combination of local and foreign perspectives: we get you the best of the best! YOU control when we stop, what we do, and where we do it. We promise you won’t leave Costa Rica feeling like you were herded!

Stress-free Support

Travelling with us is stress-free. We want you to focus on ENJOYMENT of the natural world around you, not on directions or driving or hotel and park reservations – we take care of all of that for you! And we support you all the way through your journey, which begins before you walk out the front door: you will receive a detailed, personalized packing list and suggested reading list for your individual interests.

Authentic Experiences

You will get an authentic, unique experience, not a pre-packaged tour, and will leave with an accurate impression of how Costa Ricans really live: you will experience their culture, cuisine, and ecological wonders.


Contact us

Not sure if we are the tour outfitter for you? Email us for a consultation, free of charge!

Contact Alexa or Alex (anytime!)

Or call us
+(506) 8707-3267

We always enjoy hearing from people who are interested in beautiful Costa Rica!

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Alexa was born in Geneva, Switzerland and grew up in Miami, Florida. She originally came to Costa Rica as a college sophomore on a Tropical Ecology field course through the University of Georgia. After graduating with a degree in Psychology/Zoology from the University of Florida in 2010, she returned to Costa Rica to intern as a Resident Naturalist at the University of Georgia’s satellite campus in San Luis de Monteverde. She continued studying Tropical Ecology and became specifically interested in birds, amphibians, and insects. She moved on to become a Teaching Assistant, developing lectures, workshops, field modules and student research project designs for semester-long Ecology courses. She also co-instructed short field courses in Tropical Ornithology, taught Spanish lessons, and worked as a professional translator and interpreter. After a year in San Luis, Alexa began working as a Course Coordinator for a Costa Rican nonprofit called the Monteverde Institute, which combined logistical planning with fieldwork and nature guiding. When she is not coordinating, Alexa works as a freelance Naturalist guide, leading bird watching and natural history tours in various ecosystems: cloud forests, the dry forests of the Pacific coast, and the lowland rainforests of the Caribbean and Southern Pacific slopes. Alexa has been living in San Luis de Monteverde since July of 2010, is an active member of her community, and is fluent in Spanish. When she isn’t out working, you can find her bird watching from her front porch, going for a run, visiting friends for coffee, or Salsa dancing. *Alexa is also certified in First Aid and CPR.* 
Alexander- who goes by Alex- was born and raised in Naranjito de Puntarenas—a few kilometers outside of the popular Manuel Antonio National park on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica. At the age of 18, he left his home town (and his surfing buddies!) for the capital city of San Jose, where he worked as a salesman and driver for a local business before opening his own small grocery store. Shortly after becoming a small business owner in San Jose, Alex decided to expand his horizons and explore the market in Monteverde. Upon arrival, Alex was so inspired by the beauty and tranquility of the cloud forest that he decided to sell his grocery store in the city and make the move to Monteverde! He immediately started working as a driver for a local company, and after a few years he started his own transportation company, Alex Jimenez Transportes. He now has 15 years of experience in the transportation business, safely navigating the roads of Costa Rica. He lives happily in a small, rural town called San Luis, where he likes to mountain bike, practice his English, and indulge in his new-found hobby of bird watching. He is very excited to be embarking on his newest business adventure, TropicAves!