Carara National Park

Carara National Park

Carara National Park is located in the Turrubares and Garabito cantons, in the provinces of San José and Puntarenas, between coordinates 9º51' and 9º44' North latitude, 84º36' and 84º29' East longitude. In other words, it is 90 kilometers from San José on the Costanera Sur (southern coastal) highway. The main entrance is located 2 kilometers south of the Río Grande de Tárcoles bridge. Carara National Park, which means river of lizards in the Huetar indigenous language, has the only transitional forest in the Central Pacific, resulting in a diversity of flora and fauna where native species of both dry forests and rain forests converge. This national park is a world-renowned ornithological destination and has extremely diverse birdlife, specifically the scarlet macaw (Ara macao), an endangered species that is the second largest Psittacidae species in Costa Rica. Without a doubt it is one of the main sites in the country for birdwatching, which is why it will be included in the next guide published by the Costa Rican Tourism Board for this segment of national tourism. Because of its location and ease of access on Route 34, the park is ideal for a one-day visit, with easy access from the capital in your own car, in a rental car or by public transportation. It is the first national park with a universal access path, where visitors can experience being in the forest and viewing endemic species like the giant cafecillo (Erythrochiton gymnanthus), as well as observing the relationship between some of the species.

Surface Area

Hours of Operation
Open to the public from Monday to Sunday, with two varying times per year: from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. during the dry season (December to April) and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. during the rainy season (May to November).

+506 2637-1054

From San José, take Route 27 towards Caldera. After passing the last toll in Pozón, exit toward Tárcoles-Jacó (Route 34). Continue for about 14 km. The park is located 2 km from the Tárcoles River Bridge on the road to Jacó.

Universal Path

Length: 1.2 Km. Travel time: One hour and thirty minutes approximately. Difficulty: universal access.


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