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Carate, South Puntarenas

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Open beach of Carate, south of Corcovado

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Lying in the gorgeous Osa Peninsula in the southern region of Puntarenas province, Carate is located right next to the amazingly beautiful Corcovado National Park on the shores of the Pacific Ocean. Carate is situated near the La Leona Ranger Station on the eastern end of Corcovado National Park, around 50 km south from Drake Bay. Surrounded by lush green tropical primary rainforests, Carate is often referred to as one of Costa Rica’s best-kept secrets. This is because not many people come here on vacation.

Corcovado National Park

With its close proximity to Corcovado National Park, this town is the prefect place to stay at while you explore the many wonders of this 41,788-hectare nature reserve. Home to eight diverse habitats, there are over 139 species of mammals, 116 species of reptiles, and around 400 species of birds found in Corcovado. This park is also the habitat of some of the tallest rainforest trees in the world, as well as home to the endangered puma and Scarlet Macaw.

Marine Turtles

In Carate, you will have the opportunity to watch Pacific Ridley sea turtles, Leatherback sea turtles, Green sea turtles, and Hawksbill sea turtles, come ashore to nest and lay their eggs on the beach, while you will also catch a glimpse of squirrel monkeys in the nearby trees. You can watch tapirs walk down the beach or if your lucky see some orca whales arrive in Drake Bay.


Staying in Carate

Being the ultimate nature lover’s holiday, Carate has some secluded hotels, resorts, lodges and accommodations for tourists with a sense of adventure. However, if you come here between April and December, be prepared for some heavy rains. There are plenty of hiking opportunities around Carate as well as plenty of deep sea fishing, or if you wish, you can scuba dive near the pristine waters of Caño Island.

Getting to Carate

The best way to reach Carate is by plane, as this town has a local airport, which has regular flights to San Jose. Alternatively, if you want you can fly into Puerto Jimenez from where you need to rent a 4WD taxi to Carate, which is quite a distance away past the Golfo Dulce Forest Reserve. When in Carate, do visit the stunning Playa Madrigal, a relatively isolated beach a few kilometers away.

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