Corcovado National Park in Costa Rica
The Corcovado National Park is located on the west side of the Osa Peninsula in the southern region of Costa Rica. Corcovado was declared national park in 1975. It covers an area of about 55,000 km2. The variety of species in this park, populated mostly by rain forest, mangrove, and premontane forests is very impressive and is rarely found in this intensity elsewhere in the world.
In the Corcovado National Park, there are over 500 species of trees, 140 species of mammals and 370 species of birds, in addition to some 150 species of orchids, 120 species of reptiles and amphibians and more than 6,000 kinds of insects. In the walks of several days, the tourist can see a wide variety of animals, including four species of monkeys of Costa Rica, a lot of barnacles or red macaws and diverse toucans, pizotes and tolomucos, peccaries and with little luck tapirs and snakes. Wild cats are fairly abundant here, but it is very difficult to observe them because they are very timid.
As a starting point for hiking in the national park, is the town of Puerto Jimenez on whose center and the surrounding area there are several pensions and hotels in various categories. The administration of the park is located there. A visit of several nights in one of the shelters ranger has to be planned carefully. It is also recommended to make reservations well in advance.
You can get to Puerto Jimenez through the local airline SANSA from San Jose. In the car, the journey takes approximately 11-12 hours from San Jose.
The most important ranger stations inside the park are Los Patos (northern Gulf), San Pedrillo in South Drake Bay, Sirena (the largest station, located at the South Pacific part) and La Leona located at the south park entrance.
The trail system within the Corcovado National Park is well developed. There are paths from Los Patos to Sirena (about 20 km, 6-7 hours.), from Sirena to La Leona (about 13 km in parts of the beach), and from Sirena to San Pedrillo (about 26 km, nearly all by the beach). In the area around the station Sirena, there are several paths by which you can hike fairly quiet with very good opportunities to observe animals without the annoying baggage.
The accommodations are offered only in the stations La Sirena and La Leona (cabins and rooms with multiple beds). Is important to bring mosquito nets and sleeping bags not too hot. In every season there is the possibility of spending the night in tents (which has to bring you), there are bathrooms available. The food must be ordered in advance at all stations.