In 1970, locals and government officials took action against the diminishing natural beauty of Costa Rica and turned the country into one of the most prosperous ecotourism
industries in the world. The community gathered to recognize the country's natural beauty and save flora and fauna
throughout 186 areas that are protected by the National Conservation Areas System (SINAC). SINAC now protects 32 national parks, 51 wildlife refuges, 13 forest reserves and 8 biological reserves. As one of the most bio-diverse countries in the world, Costa Rica's national parks and protected areas are some of the most interesting and beautiful places to visit.
The Costa Rican National Parks System has been a model for many other countries to improve sustainable efforts. More than 25 percent of the total landmass in Costa Rica is occupied by the National Park System, which consists of protected rainforests, tropical dry forests, cloud forests, marine areas and wetlands. Visitors come from all across the globe to experience the national parks in Costa Rica and its leading efforts in conservation and eco-friendly initiatives. The national park system protects existing vegetation areas, and some parks have also made efforts to revive areas, which are considered secondary forests. From stunning beaches
to towering volcanoes
to hot and humid rainforests
to dark caves
, Costa Rica's national parks are extraordinarily diverse from one another.
Fragile ecosystems and threatened species are conserved in efforts to assure balance and evolutionary continuation. Costa Rica is home to many wildlife sanctuaries, biological reserves and protected areas that are used for scientific and research purposes as well as the safeguarding of wildlife species that are endemic, threatened or near extinct. Protected areas also include natural and landscape features that play a role in Costa Rica's history or archeological discovery. Some stretches of sea are also protected as animals travel through these areas during migration or for birthing. The biggest difference between national parks and reserves is that the community and conservationist groups maintain the land of reserves.
These typically have a small entrance fee used to support the local community, keep up with maintenance of the parks, purchase larger plots of land to increase protection and maintain trail systems that allow travelers to go hiking and explore the diverse flora and fauna of Costa Rica.Select from the list below the National Park or the Reserves & Protected Area that you are interested in: