Zooave is located a short 10 minutes from Hotel Villa San Ignacio. If you are just starting out a family vacation and spending two nights to shake off some jet lag, we recommend a visit to Zooave to view an abundance of Costa Rica’s treasured wildlife. As well, if you have a little time before you depart, you may get to see a few animals you missed…as well as get some great photographs. Zooave’s origins as a private zoo were quite a bit different from today’s operation – in the 60’s Zooave was created as a way to exhibit animals for exportation. In 1990, Zooave took a 180 degree turn with a much more humane vision for animal welfare. Today there are three main Animal Zooave Rescue projects: Tropical Wildlife Rescue Center, Extinction Center for Wild Animals and the Conservation Park which has 7 hectares with more than 125 species of animals, among them birds, mammals and reptiles that have been rescued and, due to physical conditions or behavioral reasons, cannot be reintroduced to their natural habitat. Large enclosures are naturally designed to allow wildlife in permanent captivity to have the quality of life and great environmental enrichment. The initial challenge was to establish the project focused on animal welfare and environmental education. With time and a new mission, the park has grown into a beautiful botanical garden. Zooave has been accredited by GFAS, the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries The objective of GFAS in working and helping sanctuaries is to ensure that they are supported, exalted, recognized and rewarded for meeting important criteria in the care of resident animals. Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Daily Adults: $25 Children under 21: $10 Website: https://www.rescateanimalzooave.org/ The trails are fully accessible and wheelchair or stroller friendly. All projects are possible thanks to the people who visit Animal Zooave Rescue in Alajuela. Other projects are located in other areas of Costa Rica and include Piedras Blancas, Escondido Forest Wildlife Refuge, Bosque Escondido and the New Wildlife Hospital.