The Guanacaste National Park is one Costa Rica’s most important biological corridors. Crossing ecosystems from the dry forests to the rain forests, this massive park covers over 83,000 acres of land and was created to guarantee a sufficient, safe habitat for animals such as jaguars and mountain lions protected seasonal access between the dry forest and rain forests in Guanacaste.
Guanacaste National Park was created on July 25, 1989, on Guanacaste Day (Dia de Guanacaste) and forms a protected area from Santa Rosa extending southeast to Rincon de la Vieja encompassing a variety of habitats ensuring the survival of large number of species in the region.
Considered is one of the most diverse environments in Costa Rica the Guanacaste National Park has several unique climate zones and habitats from dry forests, watersheds and thick water soaked rainforests.
The Guanacaste National Park is home to rich variety of wildlife including howler monkeys, capuchin, white-tailed deer, snakes, jaguars, mountain lions, long-tongued bats, collared peccaries and a vast array of birds are prominent throughout these forests as well, such as crested caracara, white-throated magpie jays and orange fronted parakeets.
Guanacaste is one of the driest climates in all Costa Rica. Around the beach areas temperatures range from upper 80s to lower 90 and the evenings are generally in the upper 70s. In the highlands temperatures remain about the same, but very dry compared to the rest of Costa Rica.
When you visit the area visitors should pack a bathing suit, towel, shorts, tee shirts, appropriate shoes, rain gear, sun block, and insect repellent. To ensure you get most out of your visit you should use guide in the park. These guides are experts and will be able to point out many animals and flora that an inexperienced person would miss as well as providing details and information on the various habitats.
Hikers should never go alone because of the large cat population and as well they should make sure to stick to the known and marked trails.
The park’s main entrance is Quebrada Grande and can be accessed from the Inter-American Highway at Porterillos. For overnight trips dorm style rooms are available at one of the park’s biological stations. These extended trips require permission from the National Parks Services (Sevicio de Parques Nacionales) in San Jose in advance.
As one of the richest bio-diverse habitats in Costa Rica, make sure to the Guanacaste National Park on top of your must see list.