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First time in Costa Rica? Here are the 10 spots you can’t miss

By on August 10, 2016

Being a first time visitor in Costa Rica can put you in a difficult position. With many natural wonders, national parks, wildlife refuges and cultural spots choosing where to go can be a hard task.

 

Here is Reserva Conchal’s top 10 places to visit while staying with us in your first time in Costa Rica.

 

  1. Las Baulas National Marine Park

Distance: 23 min

 

Las Baulas National Park is one of the most beautiful experiences anyone can have when visiting Costa Rica. Since its opening in 1990, this breathtaking park has been committed to protect and guard the threatened Leatherback sea turtles who, year by year, gather on the shores of Playa Grande to nest.

 

This has earned Las Baulas National Marine Park its reputation of being one of the most fascinating places to visit when coming to Costa Rica.

 

  1. Palo Verde National Park

Distance: 2 hours

 

If you want to discover and admire native wildlife, Palo Verde National Park is, without question, the perfect choice. Famous for its unique bird watching and for being home of densely areas populated by migratory birds and aquatic species, this beautiful park encompass one of the most exotic flora and fauna found in Costa Rica.

 

Its dual nature -conjugating majestic wetlands and one of the last remaining dry forests- will captivate and intrigue you. Marvel yourself across the 45, 492 acres that have stayed unaltered since its prehistoric days and wander the vast land that offer beautiful lagoons, mangroves, grassland and forests.

 

 

  1. Guanacaste National Park

Distance: 2 hours

 

Taking the name of its province, Guanacaste National Park, its a must see for anyone visiting the Guanacaste region for the first time. Although the place is more popular between researchers than tourists, we really recommend you to stop by and say hi to the 140 species of mammals, 300 species of birds, 100 amphibians and reptiles, and more than 10,000 species of insects that proclaim Guanacaste National Park their homes.

 

 

  1. Santa Rosa National Park

Distance: 2 hours

 

Founded in 1971- the first national park in all of Costa Rica- Santa Rosa National Park is a must visit for anyone who wants to know more about Costa Rica’s history, flora and fauna.

 

Gathering both an important historic monument known as “Hacienda Santa Rosa” (or La Casona) and a significant catalogue of Costa Rica’s flora and fauna – 115 species of mammals and 10 distinct habitats-, Santa Rosa National Park combines tradition, history and a complete guide to all of the local wildlife.

 

 

  1. Celeste River

Distance: 2h 30 min

 

One of the most sublime places to visit in your first time in Costa Rica is definitely Celeste River. Its unique turquoise color, created by the effect of rocks at the bottom of the river that contain several minerals and combined with the reflection of sunlight, gives the water its characteristic hue. This qualifies it as one of the most beautiful and popular places people visit when coming to Costa Rica.

 

  1. Arenal Volcano National Park

Distance: 3 hours

 

Arenal Volcano National Park is one of the favorite places by locals and tourists. Located on the foothills of one the most active volcanoes in Costa Rica -it ceased regular eruption in 2010-, this incredible national park encompass from hiking trails to hot springs for every type of adventure.

 

  1. Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve

Distance: 3h 30 min

 

Visiting Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve is an otherworldly experience. Guarding two of the most breathtaking cloud forests in the planet, this reserve also offers exclusive coffee tours, suspension bridges, canopy tours and zip-lines that will give you the chance to experience the natural wonders of Costa Rica like you never have before.

 

Monteverde is also the best place to admire the magical and exotic beauty of the quetzal -one of the most mythical birds in Pre-Hispanic cultures-, along with the mega diversity of wildlife that gather in this legendary forest.

 

  1. Playa Conchal

Distance: Just a few steps!

 

Located in one of the most beautiful places in Costa Rica, the Guanacaste region, Playa Conchal is the ultimate jewel of this tropical paradise. With crystal clear beaches, and shell-covered sands, this stunning beach offers everything from snorkeling to stand-up paddleboarding.

 

Marvel yourself with Playa Conchal’s breathtaking sunsets or marvel at the starry night sky, while camping overnight in this little piece of heaven. If you really want to discover why Costa Rica is one of the most life changing experiences, then a trip to Playa Conchal is the key.

 

  1. Manuel Antonio National Park

Distance: 4h 30 min

 

Even though it was founded a year after Santa Rosa National Park and being one of the smallest parks in Costa Rica, Manuel Antonio National Park has become the favorite national park for both locals and tourists.

 

Internationally known for being one of the most biodiverse parks in the planet, this spot is home to a vast number of endangered species and it also offers well-marked trails that concede visitors a fascinating opportunity for greeting the 109 species of mammals and 134 species of birds that congregate in this captivating paradise.

 

  1. Poás Volcano National Park

Distance: 4h 30 min

 

Last but not least, we have Poás Volcano National Park. This absolutely heart-stopping place is one of the most popular attractions in the country. Treasuring one of the biggest -and accessible- geyser craters in the world, Poás is a unique experience that needs to be in your itinerary while vacationing in Costa Rica.

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