Costa Rica's National Parks and Rainforest

Corcovado National Park

Dubbed as the ‘most biologically intense place on Earth’ by National Geographic, this spectacular national park is filled with four monkey species, two crocodile species, jaguars, sloths, toucans, macaws and more. The park also encompasses the only remaining wet forest growth on the Pacific Coast, with 13 major ecosystems existing there including mangrove swamps, lowland rainforest and highland cloud forest; all of which mean you're likely to see some fantastic wildlife that has made itself at home here. 

Trekking, hiking and camping in the national park is permitted but only with a guide and is one of the best ways to see the park fully. Explore the natural rock formations, waterfalls, beaches and rivers in the rainforest and experience Costa Rica's true natural beauty; Corcovado is the crown jewel of the country's national park system. 

Tortuguero National Park

Otherwise known as the 'Venice of Costa Rica' due to its web of canals that pass through the dense lowland rainforest, Tortuguero is a fantastic spot for observing turtle nesting on the island with the best way to see the park by boat. Take a river tour, or hire a canoe or a kayak to take to the waters on your own. The park is a protected area and you're likely to spot green sea turtles, leatherbacks and hawksbills as they nest on the secluded beaches and wait for their babies to hatch. Most of the eggs are laid at night but you can arrange for a local guide to escort you after 6pm to see the turtles after dark as they dig their nests and lay their eggs. 

As well as turtles, Tortuguero is home to an array of other wildlife: from birds such as herons and jacanas, to sloths, iguanas, spider monkeys and river otters. For nature lovers, this park is a must-visit.

Rincon de La Vieja National Park

The lush Rincon de La Vieja National Park covers over 34,800 acres of land and is home to 32 rivers, 100 types of bird and countless animal species. Offering an intriguing mix of volcanic wonders and tropical forest, the main attraction is the cinder cone volcano whose highest peak stands at a staggering 6,385ft; due to recent eruptions, treks to the crater are no longer allowed but you can still soak up the beautiful view throughout the park.

Keep your eyes peeled for puma, jaguar, sloths and tapirs who live within the park and take a trek to the sulfuric hot spring where you can relax in the naturally heated pools or cool off in the nearby streams. The park is also dotted with beautiful natural waterfalls that make for a stunning sight. 


Home to around 100 species of mammal and 400 types of bird, Monteverde is set atop Costa Rica and is the best place to see cloud forests and coffee plantations at high altitude. At around 4,662ft above sea level, Monteverde looks down on the Costa Rican towns running along the shoreline and the dizzy heights causes a high level of moisture, resulting in plenty of fog that catches on the tall trees and drops to the flora and fauna below, creating an eerie yet stunning vista. 

Spend a few days exploring this fascinating ecosystem with its verdant, mountainous landscape and take a walking trail, or a tree canopy tour, to feel like you're floating among the clouds yourself. You can even dare yourself to a zipline adventure with some of the longest lines in the country; fly above the cloud forest on a Sky Trek adventure and look down at the priceless views.