Rincón de la Vieja National Park
Rincón de la Vieja National Park is located over the Cordillera de Guanacaste, Guanacaste and Alajuela province, 27 km northeast from the city of Liberia.
It was created by the law No. 5398, of October 23, 1973. It has an extension of 14.083.9 hectares.
One of the great benefits of this wild area is the protection of the watersheds. In this park there is probably the largest population in the wild of the purple guaria, the national flower. It has great tourist potential due to the attractions they have, specifically the scenic beauty and the geological features.
The massif of Rincon de la Vieja, with an altitude of 1.916 meters, is a composite structure. At the summit have been identified nine eruptive points, one active and the others inactive or in decline. To the south of the crater is a lake of pure water.
The last strong eruptive period, with release of large clouds of ash and production of earthquakes and subterranean noises, it happens between 1966 and 1970. The most recent eruptions occurred in 1983, 1984 and 1991. Today Rincon de la Vieja presents fumarolic activity.
At the base of the volcano, at the south side, there are areas called Las Pailas y Las Hornillas, covering an area of about 50 ha. Here are hot springs that give rise to streams of very hot water; solfataric gaps occupied by small depressions in which muddy water is constantly bubbling, holes through which jets of steam especially during the rainy season and mud volcanoes in varied shapes and dimensions.
Rincon de la Vieja presents divers habitats due to the differences in altitude and rainfall, the effect of volcanic eruptions and the type of slope. In the lower parts, some most common trees are: laurel, guanaco, olive, the ardillo, the indian nude, cedar and white capulin.
In the intermediate parts of the massif, the most abundant trees are the copey, the curd, the gourd tapir, the papayillo, the burio raton, yos, the iguano, the oak, the mata-gente and the white cypress. From 1400 meter until near the top, the forests are low and the trees are very branched and covered with mosses and epiphytes. The most common species are: the copey, the papayillo and the crespón. The Summit of the volcano is cover by ash and has little vegetation, some of the plants that can be found are copey and sombrilla de pobre
Copey sometimes is decorating almost pure forests; there the cats, tapirs, the gongolonas and black guan are numerous.
In the park there have been noticed 257 species of birds: the lark, the peacock, the goldfinch, the oriole of Montezuma, the river woodswallow, the tucancillo or curré verde, the red widow, the colidorado hummingbird, el búho de anteojos, la lora frentiblanca y el guaco. Some of the mammals are: the mountain goat, the peccary, the agouti, the tolomuco, armadillo, the bear bee-keeper, two-toed sloths and howler monkeys, white-faced and red. The insects are very abundant; highlight the beautiful morfo butterflies of which there are four species.
Camping areas at Ricon de la Vieja are open 24 hours. Also available are restrooms, showers and picnic areas.
Well marked park trail systems lead visitors through the tropical forest to the park`s attractions.
Trail guides can be arranged at either the Pailas or Santa Maria station
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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