Popular Destinations

Seven Natural Wonders of Costa Rica - guiaviajesvirtual.com

Seven Natural Wonders of Costa Rica

Chosen as the Seven Natural Wonders of Costa Rica in 2007 by Costa Ricans through an open competition organized by a national newspaper, these natural sites are among the favorites of both local and foreign tourists

Search and Book Hotels in Costa Rica

Hotels in Costa Rica

Book Cheap Flights, Hotels Deals, Vacation Packages, Car Rentals, All Inclusive Resorts and Cruises. Compare Prices and Save on Travel to Costa Rica with guiaviajesvirtual.com


Costa Rica is a Nature Paradise. It is one of the top eco-tourist destinations in the world and is considered the number one greenest country in the world.

Costa Rica features Mountains, rainforest, valleys, exotic white sand beaches, fire breathing volcanos, water canals that leads to unimaginable places in the middle of the jungle, waterfalls, and volcanoes. The country has 26 national parks protecting its rainforests, tropical forests, marine areas, volcanoes and wetlands.

In 2007 the people of Costa Rica voted in an open poll contest through an open competition organized by a national newspaper to choose the Seven Natural Wonders of Costa Rica.

About 2 million tourists visit Costa Rica on an annual basis which is a very high number considering there are only 4.2 million people living in this tropical paradise country.


These seven natural sites are among the most popular destinations by both foreign and domestic tourists, they lie in all parts of the country’s terrain, meaning that travelers will find a wonder no matter where he travels. Following are the seven natural wonders of Costa Rica:

Coco Island

Cocos Island is an island located in the province of the Republic of Costa Rica, which declared National Park Pacific Ocean. Despite being an uninhabited island in it are rangers, biologists, marine researchers and 24 hours. Since 2006 polling stations were installed for the presidential elections in Costa Rica on the island.

It was discovered in 1526 by Spanish navigator Juan Cabezas. It is located 532 km from the Costa Rican coast. Its coordinates are 05 ° 31'N 87 ° 04'W. Its land area is 23.85 square kilometers, and is 7.6 km long and 4.4 km wide, with an approximately rectangular shape. The island is one of thirteen districts of the canton of Puntarenas (Canton Central) in the province of Puntarenas. Wafer Ranger Station is located in Wafer Bay north of the island. The boat trip from Puntarenas takes about 36 hours.

Natural Features of Cocos Island

For its size, isolation, and conservation status, Cocos Island is one of the privileged natural sites worldwide. With an important endemism and unique biodiversity, the island can be categorized as an ideal place to conduct research on the evolution of species and environmental monitoring long-term natural laboratory.

235 identified plant species, 70 are endemic. 362 insects, 64 are endemic. There are 2 endemic species of lizards. 3 species of spiders are also recorded; 85 birds, 4 of which are endemic; 57 crustaceans; 118 mollusk; more than 200 fish and 18 corals. Deer and pigs were introduced by pirates and whalers who used the island as a reserve of food and wood at sea, but these species have generated Adaptations they already considered endemic.

The results of such research could provide important information on the dynamics of the planet's ecosystems and its relation to global changes of the marine and terrestrial environment. Rainfall reaches about 7,000 mm per year and during intense luviosos events have been counted more than 2000 waterfalls falling into the sea, inside there is a cloud forest, rivers and waterfalls, there are even references that there was a lake which was dried looking supposed treasures, because it is said that a metaphor for this derives the origin of its name: "this island has so much water inside and a coconut", especially useful condition for pirates and whalers, which supplied drinking water there as only possibility hundreds of kilometers around.

Condition: The National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC) has programs to ensure compliance with the laws of conservation of natural resources, maintaining a proper balance of the ecosystems of the island within marine and terrestrial boundaries. It is implementing the Program of Research and Monitoring It aims to lay the groundwork for the development of scientific research in the area and encourage it according to the priorities of the park, Public Use Program, which aims to raise awareness among groups engaged in the activity fishing in area boundaries on the importance of preserving populations of marine organisms most endangered commercial use, and a safety program for domestic and foreign visitors to the island.

As part of the protection is being infrastructure that includes cabins for parks Guarda, scientific laboratories and permanent positions in strategic locations for the control and monitoring of tourism as well as illegal fishing, all under strict principles of low environmental impact and scenic, which have been recognized by bioclimatic and environmental architects Ibo Bonilla and Rafael Víquez, who have carried out projects in many national parks and protected areas.

Cocos Island in Fiction

The book's "Desert Island" advocates the theory that Daniel Defoe used Cocos Island as a good model for his description of the island inhabited by Robinson Crusoe. However, Defoe island located off the coast of Venezuela in the Caribbean, the Pacific Ocean instead.

The fiction novel by Michael Crichton "Jurassic Park" takes place in the fictional Clouded Island, belonging to Costa Rica and located 550 km (340 miles) from the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, which corresponds exactly to the location of Cocos Island.

The novel "Falling Eagle" Costa Rican Carlos Gagini develops much of its plot on the island. One of the first films to IMAX "Shark Island" directed by Howard Hall, filmed and inspired on this island.

The Arenal Volcano in Costa Rica

The Arenal Volcano in Costa Rica is located in the district of La Fortuna, canton of San Carlos, in the province of Alajuela. It has a height of 1,670 meters. The volcano is located within the Arenal Volcano National Park. He began his last and current activity period in 1968, on July 29 at 7:30. Since then constantly it emits gases and water vapor, with some explosions with pyroclastic material emissions, and sometimes loud rumblings. For this and frequent activity, make this the most active volcano in Costa Rica.

El Arenal is a conical stratovolcano located about 8 km from La Fortuna. It has an area of 33 km2. It is distinguishable from a considerable distance. It can be seen from different villages in the canton of San Carlos as Aguas Zarcas, Pocosol, La Fortuna, La Palmera, Cutris, Deer, Florence and even Ciudad Quesada, Guatuso and Los Chiles. Geologically it belongs to the Sierra de Tilarán and is considered the nearby Chato volcano as his brother. It is one of the volcanoes of Costa Rica best known nationally and internationally and one of the most visited.

The Arenal Volcano has had several names throughout history. Some of the legends of the Maleku Indians who inhabit the plains in its shadow, that have lived inside the god of fire. His oldest registered name is The Drowned (1852), but has also been called volcano in Costa Rica (1854), volcano Rio Frio (1861), Cerro Arenal, Sugar Loaf Mountain (1896), volcano of Canastes or Pelon volcano (1925). He is quoted as Arenal volcano since 1922, this because their lavas suffering disintegration by physical and chemical effects, forming lithic and crystal sand deposited on the slopes of the cone, giving appearance of a mound of sand.

Volcanic Activity of the Arenal Vulcano

Nocturnal Eruption of Arenal in 2007. It has been estimated age of the volcano at least about 7000 years, with at least four Plinian eruptions during that period, affecting indigenous populations nearby. Before 1968, he struggled even if the volcano was one of those who did not erupt because this had never given any sign of volcanic activity. He even came to be known as "Cerro Arenal" but on July 29 of that year an explosion that destroyed villages of Tabacon and Pueblo Nuevo occurred, killing some 87 people, and created three craters.

Since then it remains active with manifestations including gas emission, flows or lava flows, pyroclastic flows and estrombolianas and Vulcan eruptions. The spectacular red-hot lava and constancy (since 1968) of the activity of Arenal, have given an important place in the world tourism community both as a scientist. Since 1984, the Arenal volcano has presented a continuous eruptive activity of Strombolian type, with effusion of lava flows, with increased activity between 1986 and 1987.4 The August 23, 1993 presented a major explosion that caused a partial collapse of the cone which emptied the crater lake of lava, causing a major landslide that came up areas pobladas.4 Between 1995 and 1996 he presented alternating periods of prolonged and quiet activity. In 1997, 288 explosions were recorded only in May. That year an ejection of ash between 5166 and 9622 tonnes per month was calculated. For 2000, the volcano showed an increase in activity (down lava flows, explosions, plumes of ash and gases) which resulted in the deaths of 2 people.4 In 2004, it was estimated at 720 km / h the they were expelled speed pumps and incandescent blocks coloso.3 overall, between 1995 and 2008, the Arenal presented important both eruptive seismic activity, although with a tendency to decrease.

Chirripo - Chirripo National Park

Chirripó is the name of the highest point of Costa Rica, is part of the Chirripo National Park. The massif is located on the border between the cantons of Perez Zeledon (San Jose), Turrialba (Cartago), Limón and Talamanca (Limón). At its peak, located in the province of Limon, converge near the boundaries of these three provinces. The summit is 3,820 meters above sea level (12,530 feet), and is the best known of the Talamanca Mountain Range and one of the highest in Central America.

Offers visitors landscapes than in any other part of the country can be seen, including glacial lakes. From its peak, on clear days you can see the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea looking southwest or northeast respectively; you can also appreciate 3/4 parts of the country and Panamanian territory. At its highest point plains, steep points, glacial lakes, forests and variety of nature they are observed. N is the peak 38 of the highest topographic prominence of the world and one of the highest 1500 world. The only way to get to this point is to walk up a mountain about 20 kilometers, which is usually done in two stages. In a first stage it rises to 3400 meters in an average time of 6 or 7 hours, where the Refugio El Paramo, which has electricity services (regulated), (not heated) drinking water, cooking utensils is, two computers with limited connection to the internet, and can accommodate about 80 people.

The second stage is usually performed in the morning on a walk 5 kilometers of moderate intensity and a time of 2 to 3 hours. Facts and Trivia: With clear skies, can be seen both the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean from its summit. The park has suffered two fires, caused by the hand of man, which have done much damage to the forest in the area. Currently these forests are in natural recovery. Every year a race up the mountain, where the best competitors finish the route to a hostel in 2 hours is performed. The minimum temperature that is registered is -9 ° C. During the winter in the northern hemisphere temperatures can drop to -5 ° C.

Rio Celeste - The Celeste River

The Celeste River is a river of Costa Rica located in the canton of Guatuso in the province of Alajuela, in the Tenorio Volcano National Park, Arenal Conservation Area-Tempisque. It is formed by the confluence of the rivers and Quebrada Agria Buena Vista in the Tenorio Volcano. Due to its particular color, the result of an optical effect produced by the scattering of sunlight due to the high concentration of aluminum silicates possessing its waters, is an important national and international tourist destination of this Central American country.

Legend: A local legend tells that the waters of the river Celeste have that color because, when God finished painting the sky, he washed the brushes in the water of this river.

Celeste River Attractions

Among the main attractions of Rio Celeste, they are: Cataract; The Teñideros, at the confluence of its tributaries and the water is observed in hues ranging from aquamarine, blue, turquoise, to deep blue; The hot Springs; The views of Tenorio Volcano; The Tropical Forest is around; The Blue Lagoon. The Bloominista Academy. The fauna found in the region includes peccaries, white-tailed deer, ocelot and birds.

Tortuguero Canals - Tortuguero National Park

Tortuguero National Park is located north of the village in Tortuguero and in the south of Parismina, Costa Rica. It is located within the Tortuguero Conservation Area (ACTo). It has 31,187 land hectares and 52,000 marine hectares. Channels are famous introductory part of Tortuguero. Impressively they were created with natural lakes and rivers. Its climate is humid; annual rainfall reaches 6000 mm in the northern part of the park. It is one of the rainiest areas of the country. No exite the dry season, but it is a fact that it rains less in February, March and October.

Tortuguero National Park is a protected area within the Humedal Caribe Noreste, was recognized under Ramsar Convention on 3 March 1991 for its rich biological diversity and ecosystems that support threatened flora and fauna species. Set in a natural wetland of the Caribbean coast, it forms a corridor with another protected area, the Indio Maíz Biological Reserve of Nicaragua. It is a key Ramsar Site.

The Tortuguero National Park ecosystem has more than 400 species of trees and about 2,200 species of other plants. The wet lowland Atlantic slopes (mostly below 500 metres (1,600 ft)) of northern Costa Rica, particularly along the coast, form into mangrove forests. The forests in this region comprise the Gavilán (Pentaclethra macroloba), Caobilla (Carapa nicaraguensis), the almendro (Dipteryx panamensis) and the monkey pot tree (Lecythis ampla); the last two species (regional endemics of the lowlands found below 250 metres (820 ft)) are stated to be nearly endangered. While 99% of mangrove forests are reported from the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, only 1% is found in the Caribbean part of the park. Lakes, marshes and floodplains areas in the park have reported floral varieties such as: Raphia taedigera, trees including Inga spp., Pterocarpus officinalis, Pachira aquatica, Pentaclethra macroloba; large trees with thick and varied undergrowth, several species of small palms; floating aquatic plants in the streams, such as the genera Azolla, Eichhornia, Hydrocotyle and Salvinia (which fully cover the streams during the dry season); other important plant species are, Dipteryx panamensis, Protium spp., Vatairea spp.,Pentaclethra macroloba, Paspalum spp., Luehea seemannii, Manicaria saccifera, Euterpe macrospadix, Brachiaria mutica, Pachira aquatica, Pterocarpus officinalis, and Raphia taedigera.

Wildlife: Tortuguero is famous for turtle nesting on its beaches. There are also numbers of monkeys, frogs, iguanas, fish, crocodiles, manatees, pumas and many other species of animals.

Poas Volcano National Park

Poas Volcano National Park is a national park in Costa Rica that covers an area of approximately 65 square kilometers (16,000 acres); the maximum height is 2,708 meters. One of its main attractions is that it is easily accessible even by 2009 Costa Rica earthquake only some roads were free. The volcano is located within the conservation area of the Cordillera Central. The main crater is 300 m deep and a diameter of about 1.7 km, is the largest crater in the world 1 geyser and one of the largest craters in the world.2 and remains active today, with small emissions and an acidic gases lagoon.

The last major eruption was between 1952 and 1954. The volcanic massif is composed of an older crater called Botos in reference to the original living in the area, which is not active and has a lake in its center. The Botos is a green color lake with water due to the amount of sulfuric acid in water and has a diameter of 365 m.

The park has well marked to visit these places trails, and you can see lots of birds that inhabit the rainforest. The park has a wide variety of wildlife such as squirrels, various kinds of birds, peccaries and dozens of orchids. In the last decade the park has had to be closed several times due to high emissions of gases that have been sporadic since. There are a number of indicators showing that the volcano is showing signs of activity very slowly which can become a new eruption.

Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve

The Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve is a private reserve in Costa Rica situated along the Cordillera de Tilarán between the provinces of Puntarenas and Alajuela.Su name from the nearby town of Monteverde and was founded in 1972. The reserve consists of more than 10 500 hectares of rainforest, and receives about 70,000 visitors a year. It has 6 ecological zones, 90% of which are virgin forest. Scientists and tourists have since found a very high biodiversity, which consists of more than 2500 species of plants (including most species of orchids in one place), 100 species of mammals, 400 species of birds, 120 species of reptiles and amphibians, and thousands of insects.


Monteverde Biological Reserve covers an area of biological conservation that is located in the foothills of the Cordillera de Tilarán, in the Province of Puntarenas, Costa Rica. The reserve is privately owned and covers an area of over 10 000 ha, protecting an important part of the extensive cloud forests of the Cordillera de Tilarán. It also forms a biological corridor Arenal Volcano National Park called "Complex Arenal-Monteverde cloud forest". The area is visited annually by more than 70,000 tourists who come mainly to observe birds and contemplate the cloud forest. It is located 5 km east of downtown Santa Elena, in the Monteverde district (province of Puntarnenas).

Private Reserve: The area relates entirely to a private reserve owned by the Tropical Science Center (CCT), a Costa Rican scientific and educational NGO nonprofit organization, founded in 1962. The book as such, was established in 1972 and immediately took CST administration.

This wildlife area was created to protect the flora, fauna and water resources, and to carry out both scientific studies and environmental education programs. Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve covers eight different biological zones, covers an area of about 10,522 hectares. It is home to over 2,000 species of plants and trees, 100 species of mammals, over 400 species of birds and some 1,200 species of amphibians and reptiles. Among the species are the bell bird, jaguars, pumas, monkeys and frogs. As for its flora, it is also home to more than 300 species of orchids and 200 species of ferns.

Map of Costa Rica


Custom Search




You May Also Like


Best Hotels Deals  Cheap Flights  Compare Car Rental  Cruises  Last Minute Deals