BRAULIO CARRILLO NATIONAL PARK
It is located in the northeast of the Central Valley, on the Central Volcanic Mountain Range, between the massifs of the Poas and Irazu volcanoes. This park includes the volcanoes Barva and Cacho Negro, extending from the Alto de la Palma (Moravia) until the Biological Station la Selva (Sarapiquí). It was created by the Law No. 8357-A, of April 5, 1978. Its extension is 45.899.2 hectares.
This park is dedicated to the Benefactor of the Fatherland, Mr. Braulio Carrillo, third Chief of State of Costa Rica (1835-37 and 1838-42), who located this efforts to open a path to transmit the Central Valley with Matina, on the Atlantic coast. This area is located in one zones of most irregular topography of the country. The landscape consists of high mountains densely cover by forests and innumerable rivers. The topography and high annual rainfall of about 4.500 mm annually, result in the formation of countless waterfalls.
The park contains several dormant volcanoes. Cacho Negro Volcano is very visible by its conical shape and the Barva with several craters, the lake of the Barva, circular, about 70 meters diameter and of clear water and the Danta Lake, about 500 meters in diameter. The hills Las Tres Marías, seen clearly from San José, are the remains of a calderic structure that existed there. The park´s vegetation is the evergreen forest of great density y floristic complexity. The forest has variations under varying environmental conditions, topography, drainage, temperature, cloudiness and rainfall.
Higher forest and of higher species richness are found in the lower parts, in the higher parts the trees are smaller and shapeless and the total number of species is lower. The major part of the park is covered by a primary forest, in which there are about 6.000 plants species that represents the half of the total of the country. The manú, caoba, oak, caobilla and gavillán are relatively abundant. There are also botarrama, ceiba, yos, lorito and ojoche; other species, however, are in danger of extinction, such as the nazareno, jícaro, palmito dulce and the súrtuba. In the higher parts of the park, specifically the Barva volcano; the flora is characteristic of cloud forest, finding species such as: cipresillo, candelillo, white oak and cedrillo.
The park presents a great fauna diversity. Highlights the rich avifauna represented in almost 515 bird species of residents and migratory birds. There are the king of vulture, the umbrella bird, the goldfinch and the quetzal. Among the mammals species highlights the white-faced monkeys, red and howler monkey, tapir, puma and jaguar, peccary, the bear beekeeper, the martilla, the mountain goat, the agouti and the coyote. Also are species in danger of extinction due to hunting, such as the peacock and the tepezcuinte. Frogs and toads are very abundant in the area. Located on the volcano Barva area, there is endemic specie, the toad Bufo holdridgei. A reptile existent in the park is the matabuey, the largest venomous snake in the continent.
Park facilities and hours
All three ranger stations within Braulio Carrillo National Park are open from 8:00am to 4:00pm. Several scenic hiking trails wind through the different sectors, and trail guides are available. Restrooms, picnic areas, and facilities are available only at the ranger stations, and it is highly recommended that further exploration of the park be undertaken with an experienced guide.
Our reception desk will be pleased to answer any questions you may have about these or other tours. Tours can be booked through our receptionists prior to or during your trip.
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