Costa Rica Real Estate 

National Parks:

Alphabetically A -- C 

 

ARENAL VOLCANO NATIONAL PARK:
This unique park is home to the Arenal volcano, the most spectacularly active in Costa Rica.  The elevation of the Park lands range from 1,000 to 1,657 meters (3,281 to 5,436 feet). The habitats represented here are cloud forest margin/edge, freshwater river, and regenerating tropical rainforest-lowland.
Attractions
Arenal volcano
Animals
Paca, tapir, coati, cloth, deer, parrots, parakeets, quetzals, parrot snake, fer-de-lance
Vegetation
Cloud forest, tropical forests below mountain slopes
Services
None
Park Size
2,920 hectares (7,212 acres)
Location
GuanacasteProvince
152 kilometers from San José 

 

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MARINO BALLENA NATIONAL PARK:
One of Costa Rica's newest national parks, Ballena National Park was created to conserve some of the marine resources of the South Pacific region.  This park extends out into the Pacific Ocean to the West for 9 kilometers, and is 6 kilometers wide.  Because it includes such a large area of open ocean, plus islands and long, wide beaches, the park is ideal for scuba diving and beachcombing activities.  Getting its name from the Spanish world for whale, "ballena," the Park has several species of whales in or near its boundaries.
Attractions
Protected beach habitat, Scuba diving, Snorkeling, Beachcombing, Whale watching
Animals
Humpback whales, green marine iguanas, bottle nosed and common dolphins, Olive Ridley and Hawksbill turtles, corals (reefs), sponges, anemones, crabs, lobsters, trunkfish, frigate birds, brown footed boobies, pelicans, ibises
Vegetation
SubtropicalBeach front
Services
None, but camping, with prior permission, is allowed on beaches. Water available at the ranger stations.
Park Size
110 hectares land (270 acres)
5,375 hectares marine (13.276 acres)
Location
Province of Puntarenas, from Punta Uvita to Punta Pinuela
190 km (120 miles) SW of San José on the PacificCoast

 

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BARRA HONDO NATIONAL PARK:
Once covered by the waters of the Pacific Ocean, Barra Hondo National Park lies among reef formations – made of calcified green and blue seaweed, tiny sea protozoan, sponges and porcupines, and limestone rocks. Barra Hondo National Park is surrounded by these tall reef rocks that rise up to 300 meters and also constitute a major portion of Barra Hondo hill.  Barra Hondo Peak, made largely of this reef limestone, rises more than 1,000 feet. Although the calcareous formations of the limestone caverns are the main visitor attraction, only about 50% of the complex has been explored.  The most attractive caves are the Velvet, Tampa and Santa Ana — with stalagmites and stalactites, columns, pearls, flowers, needles, popcorn, shark’s teeth and other formations. A guide is required.
Attractions
Limestone caves, Calcareous cave formations
Animals
white face monkey, coyote, armadillo, deer, raccoon, pizote, fox, stinky fox, copetona magpie, zapayol or catano, red-headed zopilote
Vegetation
“Ron­ Ron”, tempisque, jobo, the “naked Indian”, poroporo, gallinazo, soncoya, guanacaste, carco, madroño and peine de mico.
Services
Information center, restrooms, potable water
Park Size
2,295 hectares (5,669 acres)
Location
 Province of Guanacaste, 22 kilometers north of Nicoya

 

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BRAULIO CARRILLO NATIONAL PARK:
Noted for its cloud forest and the rainforest that covers the park, Braulio Carrillo National Park also has several dormant volcanoes: Cerro Chompipe, Cerro Cacho Negro, Cerros las Tres Marias. Barva and the resultant crater lakes: Barva, Danta and Copey. Braulio Carrillo abounds with flora and fauna species in its multiple ecosystem zones, which feature innumerable rivers and waterfalls.  With over 4,500 mm of rainfall per year, the park is fundamental for the protection of the water resources of the Sector Norte (Sarapiqui) hydroelectric project, which supplies water to a large portion of the Central Valley.   
Attractions
Cloud Forest, Rain Forest, dormant volcanoes, crater lakes, waterfalls
Animals
73 species of bats, 5 species of cats, 3 species of monkeys, tapir, paca, sloth, peccary and white-tailed deer.
Birds: Quetzal, Great Green macaw, Toucan, Umbrella Bird, linnet, hummingbirds
Vegetation
Cloud Forest, Rainforest: manu, caoba, oak, caobilla, gavilan,
Services
Information center, picnic areas, camping, restrooms, potable water, exhibits
Park Size
45,899 hectares (113,371 acres)
Location
20 miles northeast of San Jose; between Poas & Irazu volcanoes

 

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CAHUITA NATIONAL PARK:
Protects beaches and lowlands of the southern Caribbean coastal region of Costa Rica. Exceptional scuba diving and snorkeling abounds in the protected marine area, which contains a coral reef and the associated sea life. Plus, the southern beach is a known nesting ground for several varieties of sea turtles.
Attractions
Diving, snorkeling among Mature Coral Formations, white sand beaches, turquoise water
Animals
Coral: elkhorn, smooth brain, Venus sea fans, sea urchins. Fish: French angelfish, blue parrotfish, barracuda, queen angelfish, sea cucumber, lobster, green turtle, crustaceans
Howler monkeys, white face monkeys, raccoons, white-nosed coatis, green ibis, yellow-crowned night heron, Northern boat-billed heron.
Vegetation
Humid tropical forest, swamp forest, mangle, coastal flora
Services
Information center, picnic areas, camping, rest rooms, showers, parking
Park Size
1,067 hectares (2,635 acres) land;
22,400 hectares (55,328 acres) marine
Location
Province of Limón, 42 km south of Limón City, Caribbean Coast

 

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CHIRRIPÓ NATIONAL PARK:
The name translates to “Place of Eternal Waters,” and is home to Costa Rica's tallest peak: 3,761m (12,336 ft.) Mount Chirripó.  All areas of the Park are quite a challenging hike. But on a clear day, you can see both the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea from its tallest summit.  Advance reservations are required: 506-771-3155
Attractions
Rock climbing, glacial lakes, Wildlife, Rain Forest, Savannah of the Lions
Animals
Coyotes, jaguars, pumas, tapirs, squirrels, rabbits, frogs, crocodiles, owls and quetzals
Vegetation
The rain forests are characterized by great variety of arbores cent ferns, moss, palms, orchids and bromeliads, plus a Savannah area.
Services
Information center, picnic areas, rest rooms, camping (advance reservations required – (506) 771-3155)
Park Size
50,150 hectares (12,871 acres)
Location
Part of La Amistad Biosphere Reserve, Talamanca Mountain Range, 20 kilometers NE of San Isidro de El General.

 

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CORCOVADO NATIONAL PARK:
Increasingly popular but still very remote, and no there are no roads — only dirt tracks lead into this park. It is the largest single block of virgin lowland rainforest in Central America and is the largest and only tropical primary lowland rainforest in the world. Looking south from Punta Dominical to the Osa Peninsula, this park is comprised of 134,771 acres on land and 5,928 acres of sea.   Corcovado National Park receives more than 200 inches of rain per year and is less than a one hour boat ride of Punta Dominical. 
Corcovado is widely regarded as one of the world’s most biologically diverse regions. Costa Rica, and specifically Punta Dominical, actively supports efforts to conserve this unique natural resource.  
Attractions
Tropical, pristine Rainforest, wildlife, bird watching
Animals
Home to at least 400 species of birds, 140 of mammals, 116 of amphibians and reptiles, 6,000 of insects, 40 species of fresh water fish. The park’s six distinct ecosystems shelter scarlet macaws, jaguars, pumas, tapirs, poison-dart and golden frogs, the harpy eagle, and other endangered species. There are also four species of sea turtles. 
Vegetation
500 species of trees; eight habitats from mangrove swamp and jolillo palm grove to mountain forest.
Services
Information center, picnic areas, camping, restrooms, showers, potable water
Park Size
54,538 hectares  land (12,871 acres)
2,400 hectares marine (5,928 acres)
Location
Puntarenas Province on Osa Peninsula

 

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