Olman Otoya is no stranger to the rainforest. He was born and raised in a rural area near Golfito in southern Costa Rica, and, as a child, the rainforest was his playground. Walking in the forest and swimming and snorkeling in the ocean occupied most of his spare time. Olman says he has always been curious about nature.
As long ago as he can remember simply sighting an animal, bird or fish has provoked a strong emotional response. Even today after several years of guiding people every day and observing wildlife, he still feels the excitement upon the discovering one of natures treasures.
As a child Olman began learning English from the tourists around Golfito. By the time he started studying English in High School he could speak it better than the professor. Working as a nature guide and conversing with English speaking people from all over the world was the final touch he needed to sharpen his language skills.
As a requirement for high school graduation Olman had to do an internship at a business that catered to tourism. He did this at Hacienda Barú and excelled during his six week on-the-job learning period. When the internship was finished, Olman asked for a job, and was accepted as an apprentice guide. That was in 2008, and he has been here ever since.
Olman’s work brought him in close contact with bird watchers and birding guides, and he soon found himself spending his free time searching for new birds. When the opportunity to take a short course in bird watching presented itself, he jumped at the chance. Today Olman is an excellent birding guide at Hacienda Barú.
Our guests tell us that they enjoy Olman’s friendly manner, extensive knowledge about nature and dedication to the conservation of the rainforest. He obviously enjoys what he is doing.