10 best national parks in Costa Rica
Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a country in Central America, popularly known for its diversity and natural resources. Costa Rica’s nature preserves are full of rare flora and fauna. In the whole world, Costa Rica is known for its 28 national parks, and three of them are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Around 28% percent of the land in Costa Rica is covered by national parks or reserves, with the purpose to protect endangered species and green cover of the area. Among hikers and birdwatchers, Costa Rica is quite popular. 

For nature and wildlife photographers, Costa Rica offers the world’s most brilliant location to capture them. Out of 28 national parks, we will talk about the best 10 national parks in Costa Rica and find what makes them the world’s most unique natural reverse in the world. These national parks are also ideal destinations for all kinds of vacations.

 

10 National Parks in Costa Rica

 

Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve

Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve

 

Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve is a national park or forest reserve in Monteverde, Costa Rica. It was founded in the year 1972 in the territory of Puntarenas and Alajuela. You will get surprised by knowing about 2.5% of the world’s biodiversity rest in this tiny forest reserve, and 10% of the flora found there can be seen nowhere else in the world.

It is the best place to see the mythical bird of Costa Rica’s Resplendent Quetzal. The Resplendent Quetzal is one of the most beautiful birds, and Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve is home to several Resplendent Quetzal birds. You will see various birdwatchers roaming around and clicking pictures of birds and animals. 

A hundred percent of the proceeds from entry fees, go towards research programs and education. On one side the Caribbean and other Pacific sea make this reserve more spectacular. 

  • Location: Carr. a Reserva de Monteverde, Provincia de Puntarenas, Monteverde, Costa Rica
  • Best Time to Visit: December to March
  • Opening and Closing Hours: 7 am to 4 pm
  • Entry Fee: $25 per person
  • Wildlife You Can See: Resplendent Quetzal, Jaguar, Ocelot, Tapir

 

Tortuguero National Park

 

Tortuguero National Park; 3rd most famous national parks in Costa Rica

Parque Nacional Tortuguero or Tortuguero National Park is another protected wildlife and forest area on the northern Caribbean shore of Costa Rica. This national park is home to endangered green turtles. Its breathtaking location and lush green area make it a popular tourist destination.

Tortuguero National Park has freshwater creeks and lagoons that can be seen via canoe or boat. 

This national park is only accessible by water or air mode. But still, it is the third most famous national park in Costa Rica. If you want to see the rare flora and fauna from closer, you can book a boat trip from the entrance gate and reach to more closer to the wildlife. 

  • Location: Limón Province, Costa Rica
  • Best Time to Visit: March to October and February to July
  • Opening and Closing Hours: 6 am to 12 mid and 1 pm to 4 pm
  • Entry Fee: $15 per person
  • Wildlife You Can See: Blue jean frog, Green turtle, American Crocodile, Great Green Macquce
Related Read: 8 Best Waterfalls in Costa Rica You Must Visit

Corcovado National Park

Corcovado National Park

 

Corcovado National Park locally known as Parque Nacional Corcovado. In the list of 10 best National Park in Costa Rica, Corcovado National Park hold the 3rd position due to its rich biodiversity and native species of flora and fauna.

It is in the southwest of Costa Rica Osa Peninsula and is a popular hiking spot in Costa Rica. The hiking trails follow inland and coastal routes through habitats ranging from mangrove swamps and beaches to montane and lowland rainforest. 

National Geographic named this national park The Most Biologically Intense Place on Earth. It contains one of the last remaining zines of lowland tropical rainforests in the world. 

  • Location: Los Patos Sirena Trail, Puntarenas Province, Costa Rica
  • Best Time to Visit: July to April
  • Opening and Closing Hours: 8 am to 4 pm
  • Entry Fee: $15 per person 
  • Wildlife You Can See: Humpback Whale, Brown Pelican, Dolphin, Fishing Bulldog Bat.

 

Arenal Volcano National Park

 

Arenal Volcano National Park

Arenal Volcano National Park is one of the most famous national parks and is home to Arenal Volcano. It is the most active volcano in Costa Rica and catches the attention of millions of visitors. Lake Arenal is also near to Parque Nacional Volcán Arenal or Arenal Volcano National Park. Overall it is full of natural paradises like an active volcano, freshwater lake, animals, and birds. 

Arenal Volcano National Park covers 290 square miles area of land. Approximately it has 850 species of birds, can be found only in Costa Rica. The park comes under the Arenal Huetar Norte Conservation Area. 

  • Location: LA Fortuna, Alajuela Proveince
  • Best Time to Visit: June to September
  • Opening and Closing Hours: 8 am to 4 pm
  • Entry Fee: $15 per person
  • Wildlife You Can See: Deer, Quetzal, Armadillo, Parrot Snake, Jaguar

 

Poas Volcano National Park

 

Poas Volcano National Park

Poas Volcano National Park is another natural preserve area and home to various native animals and migrated birds. In the Poas Volcano National Park, there is an active Volcano named Paos Volcano. The Paos Volcano is located in the Central Conservation area near the Pacific Coast. 

Poas Volcano National Park covers an area of 65 kilometers. Due to the rapid volcanic eruption, sulphuric gas emissions, and harmful water vapors, Poas Volcano National Park closed over the years.  

Besides all these hurdles, it is one of the most beautiful national parks in Costa Rica, with a spectacular natural lake, Lake Botos.  

  • Location: Alajuela Province, ‎Costa Rica
  • Best Time to Visit: January to April
  • Opening and Closing Hours: 7 am to 2 pm
  • Entry Fee: $15 per person 
  • Wildlife You Can See: Hummingbird, Quetzal, Coyotes, Sparrows

 

Manuel Antonio National Park

 

Manuel Antonio National Park

Manuel Antonio National park is one of the finest and most diverse nature reserves in Costa Rica. It is near the Quepos city of Costa Rica and was founded in 1972 to protect the endangered species of Costa Rica.

Manuel Antonio National Park is listed several times among the most spectacular national parks in the whole world. With its verdant rainforest, pristine beaches, and clear blue waters, you all will fall in love with this. 

Manuel Antonia National Park is also one of the smallest, covering 680 hectares. Apart from its small size, it is one of the richest national parks in the sense of flora and fauna. It is home to many endangered species and more than 50,000 marine lives.

Explore the natural mangroves forest, lagoons, and white sandy beaches of Costa Rica where you will get a chance to spot rare birds and mammals. 

  • Location: Quepos City, Puntarenas Province, Costa Rica
  • Best Time to Visit: May to November 
  • Opening and Closing Hours: Wednesday to Monday 7 am to 3 pm. Tuesday Closed.
  • Entry Fee: $15 per person 
  • Wildlife You Can See: Howler, Sloth, Capuchin Monkey, Squirrel Monkey

 

Piedras Blancas National Park

Piedras Blancas National Park

 

Piedras Blancas National Park is one of the most visited national parks in Costa Rica. For trekkers, wildlife photographers, and birdwatchers, Piedras Blancas is no less than a paradise. Its rich flora and fauna, natural water sources, and rainforest make it the most stunning nature reserve in the world. 

This park is situated in the Puntarenas Province of Southern Costa near La Gamba and covers a 140.2 km square area. Piedras Blancas is part of the Osa Conservation Area, which conserves the natural resources of Costa Rica. The forest is covered in Jurassic, verdant forest and is home to many endemic animals and plants. 

  • Location: LA Gamba Town, Puntarenas Province, Costa Rica
  • Best Time to Visit: April to October
  • Opening and Closing Hours: 8 am to 4 pm daily
  • Entry Fee: $15
  • Wildlife You Can See: White Nose Capuchin Monkey, Toucans, Coatis, Howler Monkey

 

Carara National Park

 

Carara National Park

Carara National Park is in the central Pacific Conservation Area situated near the Pacific Coast. It is one of the most popular northern rainforests in Costa Rica. Firstly it was a biological reserve and was later upgraded to a national park in 1998.

Carara National Park is known for its wild scarlet macaw and other tropical bird species. Crocodiles are the center of attraction at Carara National Park. Here you will get a chance to see the Cordiles in their natural habitat. 

Carara National Park is covered in the dense rainforest, which makes the park steamy and humid. It is a haven for 400 types of different birds, Parakeets, Trogons, and Hummingbirds. 

  • Location: Q9JV+FJ4, Puntarenas Province, Tarcoles, Costa Rica
  • Best Time to Visit: May to November and December to April
  • Opening and Closing Hours: 8 am to 7 pm 
  • Entry Fee: $10 per person
  • Wildlife You Can See: Motmots, Hummingbirds, Woodpeckers, Orange-Chinned Parakeets.

 

Palo Verde National Park

 

Palo Verde National Park

Palo Verde National Park is one of the best Costa Rica national parks. It is the main part of the Arenal Tempisque Conservation Area, which covers a large area of Tempisque River Valley.

Palo Verde National Park covers an area of 45.492 acres. Among true nature lovers, Palo Verde National Park is no less than a perfect place to see the marvelous creation of mother earth. 

It is a home for wetland bird species like Roseate Spoonbills, Herons, Wood Storks, and Egrets. The almost region of the park is tropical dry forests, and Palo Verde concentrates on preserving essential limestone ridges, floodplains, seasonal pools, and marshes. 

  • Location: 9MM8+978, Guanacaste Province, Bagaces, Costa Rica
  • Best Time to Visit: December to April
  • Opening and Closing Hours: 8 am to 5 pm
  • Entry Fee: $12 per person
  • Wildlife You Can See: Roseate Spoonbills, White Ibis, Great Curassows, Wood Storks.

 

Santa Rosa National Park

 

Santa Rosa National Park

Among the 10 best national parks in Costa Rica, Santa Rosa National Park is the most famous and stunning national park. It is situated in Guanacaste Province, northwestern Costa Rica. Santa Rosa National Park protects a large area of dry forest. It is home to Deer, Wild Cats, Birds, Tapir, Monkeys, and many other animals. 

Santa Rosa has some lovely beaches that are the nesting zone of Sea Turtles. During your visit to Santa Rosa National park, you will get a chance to see the rare and exotic species of animals and birds. 

  • Location: R7QV+5XC Hacienda Murciélago, Provincia de Guanacaste, Costa Rica
  • Best Time to Visit: Summers
  • Opening and Closing Hours: 8 am to 4 pm
  • Entry Fees: $10 per person
  • Wildlife You Can See: Coyotes, Jaguar, Ocelot, Sea Turtle

 

Wrap This Discussion Here

 

These 10 national parks of Costa Rica are an essential part of our ecosystem. Apart from their natural benefits, these are the central attraction of Costa Rica. The whole tourism sector depends upon all 28 national parks. So, if you ever get a chance to visit Costa Rica, you must visit these places. You don’t need to cover all 28 national parks. If you can explore at least these above-shared parks, that itself is sufficient. 

 

FAQ’s Related to National Parks of Costa Rica

In the Caribbean and Central Ameican region, Costa Rica is one of the most peaceful countries.