Purchasing tickets to Costa Rica’s most popular national park is getting easier.
The National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC) announced this month that it has implemented an online reservation platform for Manuel Antonio National Park near Quepos, Puntarenas.
The website is meant to facilitate access to the protected wildlife area — which, due to its popularity, sometimes has long lines and meets daily capacity limits.
“We are convinced that the modernization of the online ticketing system for Manuel Antonio National Park, which is added to that of Póas Volcano, allows us to manage visits more efficiently and improve the quality of the visitor experience”, said Grettel Vega, executive director of SINAC.
The online tool will also minimize face-to-face interactions during the coronavirus pandemic.
“This platform responds to the call of the country’s health authorities to have technological mechanisms that reduce direct contact between people,” Vega said.
The traditional in-person ticket office is still available at the Coopealianza office on the outskirts of the national park and at their Quepos office.
More than 311,000 people visited Manuel Antonio National Park in 2017, according to data provided by Costa Rica Tourism Board. The park is popular for its beaches, abundance of wildlife and its relative proximity to San José.
According to SINAC, visitors to Manuel Antonio might spot titi monkeys, white-faced monkeys, howler monkeys, two- and three-fingered sloths, raccoons, coatis, and iconic birds like the toucan.
The entrance fee to Manuel Antonio is 1,600 colones (about $2.70) for citizens and residents, and $16 for foreigners and non-residents.
Costa Rica national parks open this month
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.