La Selva Protected Zone & Biological Station, Heredia

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Located some 3 km south of Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui, the La Selva Protected Zone & Biological Station is an amazing neotropical biological research station in region of Heredia. Created and operated by the Organization for Tropical Studies, La Selva Biological Station each year is home to more than 250 scientists and researchers from 26 countries across the globe. Offering tourists and nature lovers a unique opportunity to learn and enjoy this incredible ecosystem, La Selva Protected Zone & Biological Station is an important research site in the world today.

Unbelievable Amount of Animals

Home to over 120 species of mammals including jaguars, tapirs, agoutis, bats and three monkey species, in La Selva Protected Zone you can also spot over 420 species of birds, 500 butterfly species and roughly 2,000 different kinds of vascular plants. According to recent studies, more than 400 ant species have been found to live here.

October is Driest Time to Visit

Adjacent to the Braulio Carrillo National Park, where the Sarapiqui and Puerto Viejo rivers meet, La Selva Protected Zone extends over 3,739 acres and is one of the wettest protected zones in Costa Rica. The annual rainfall here is roughly 13 feet or 152 inches! The best time to visit La Selva Protected Zone & Biological Station is in October, when the rainfall is much less.

Endless Hiking

There are roughly 57 km of trails to walk in La Selva Protected Zone & Biological Station with half-day guided tours beginning daily at 8 am. Tour groups are limited to 10 people, so it is key that you reserve your place in advance to avoid disappointment. Another option is to enjoy a 3 hour natural history walk or if you enjoy bird watching half-day tours are also on hand. Keep in mind though that unguided hiking is not allowed here. The Sendero Tres Ríos trail is wheelchair accessible with a paved walking track. Watch out for toucans, tangers, sloths, agoutis, iguanas, coatis and peccaries as you walk on by. The arboretum is also great o visit with over 1,000 plants and trees grown here.

If you like, you can stay overnight at the La Selva Biological Station with 10 dorm-styled room on hand for rent. The rooms here are basic, with guided hikes and meals included in your room rate.

Getting To La Selva Protected Zone

The best way to get here is to catch the bus from San Jose to Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui, from where you can catch another bus or taxi to the biological station. It is best to make reservations before coming here as researches have first priority on rooms and other facilities.

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