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Isabel Salas Vindas

Isa Salas is a Costa Rica born biologist, who loves her country and teaching about it. Known for her professionalism and experience in the field of animal behavior, Isa earned her master's degree in biology from the University of Costa Rica, where she also engaged in research for the chemistry and biology departments. Isa has carried out specialized projects on mantled howler monkeys for Costa Rica’s National Institute of Biodiversity (INBio) and is one of the country’s experts on howler monkey sexual and social behavior.

Always eager to share her vast knowledge about tropical nature and local culture, Isa has been an onboard naturalist and expedition leader for small cruise ships since 1996. Isa has also led nature-based land programs for affinity groups from leading universities and museums, as well as family programs. When not guiding, Isa has taught tropical biology courses in Costa Rica for Duke University’s Talent Identification Program, Iowa State University’s International Fieldtrips in Biology, and California’s Cabrillo College, as well as the University of Costa Rica.

In her free time, Isa enjoys training her dogs and cats, hiking natural trails and reading authors or watching documentaries with emphasis in natural history and on culinary theory. She believes that food and the ingredients are one of the most important aspects of traveling; wherever she goes, she makes sure to learn many local recipes to take the knowledge back home. She has recently taken a liking of southern Europe history and paintings for which she is spending time learning. Isa is fluent in English, as well as her native Spanish, and has worked in recent years in Cuba, Spain and Portugal and chooses to travel to nature oriented sites; in spite of the fact that she is not a fan of large cities, she is certainly willing to visit and learn about its people and food.