Costa Rica has opened the majority of its national parks starting August 1.
Below is a list of national parks and protected wildlife areas open for visitors this month, according to the National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC).
- Marino Ballena National Park (Uvita Sector). Hours are Wednesday through Monday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and subject to tides.
- Caño Island Biological Reserve.
- Cahuita National Park. Beach use from 8:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
- Gandoca – Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge (Manzanillo Sector). Beach use from 8:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
- Barra Honda National Park (trails only).
- Cipancí Wildlife Reserve.
- Camaronal National Wildlife Reserve.
- Ostional National Wildlife Reserve.
- Las Baulas National Marine Park
- Monte Alto Reserve.
- Cabo Blanco National Reserve.
- Diriá National Park.
- Cocos Island National Park.
- Rincón de la Vieja National Park (Pailas sector). Requires online reservation.
- Santa Rosa National Park (Marine Sector). Requires online reservation.
- Santa Rosa Sector (Historic Site). Opens August 5 and requires online reservation.
- Guayabo national monument.
- Los Quetzales National Park.
- Irazú Volcano National Park (Crater and Prussia sectors).
- Tapantí National Park.
- Braulio Carrillo National Park (Quebrada González Sector).
- Grecia Forest Reserve (Bosque del Niño Sector).
- Manuel Antonio National Park.
- Carara National Park.
- Playa Hermosa-Punta Mala National Wildlife Refuge (5:00 am to 2:30 pm).
- Arenal Volcano National Park.
- Tenorio Volcano National Park.
- Palo Verde National Park.
- Tortuguero National Park (Cerro Tortuguero closed). Online reservations.
The privately owned Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve can also remain open. The popular Poás Volcano National Park will stay closed in August.
“The opening of Protected Wildlife Areas has been carried out progressively, seeking the greatest possible order and implementing all the sanitary facilities and measures, to guarantee a visit in accordance with the strictest sanitary protocols,” said Grettel Vega, director of SINAC.
Not all attractions will be open at the parks. Picnic areas and stores will be closed, SINAC says, while lookouts or trails that typically generate crowds may remain off-limits. Entrance will be capped at 50% of capacity.
Visitors must also abide by physical distancing and hygiene guidelines. This includes paying via credit/debit card (rather than cash) at most parks and wearing a face covering when interacting with others.