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Costa Rica Rainforests

Central America represents 7% of the flora and fauna of the world. Being a transit zone between two continents, it shelters species from both North and South America. Costa Rica alone guards 4.5% of the entire planet’s biodiversity and its rainforests comprise 25% of the national territory.

Costa Rica’s rainforests can be categorized into tropical rainforest, cloud forest and tropical dry forest.  While tropical rainforests are the most common habitat in the country, Costa Rica’s cloud forests are a stunning sight to lay eyes on.   They cover the higher pitch of volcanoes and mountains all across Costa Rica, captivating visitors with their mysterious fogs and exotic vegetation.
Costa Rica’s tropical rainforests can be found in the southwest of the country as well as in the Atlantic lowlands.  Rainforests play a fundamental role in life as they help Earth’s climate by diminishing the greenhouse effect and contain edible food crops and other important natural resources.  

Costa Rica’s forests are home to an amazingly varied mix of mammals, reptiles, amphibians, insects, fish and birds; becoming one of the most productive and intense ecosystems in the world. 

The flora is just as astounding.  The trees can grow up to 100 feet tall, absorbing about 90% of the rain forest’s photosynthesis.
Underneath these enormous wonders of nature, there are thousands of different species of smaller trees.

Tropical dry forests in Costa Rica are found in the North Pacific coast. Although they’re not as diverse as the rainforests, due to the fact that they receive much less rain, Costa Rica’s dry forests evoke an amazing ecosystem with a wide variety of flowers and trees.

Some of the most popular rainforest, cloud forest and dry forest destinations include the following:

  • Arenal Area: The Arenal Volcano area is the perfect spot for enjoying and learning about Costa Rica’s rainforests.  Places such as Cerro Chato, Fortuna Waterfall and Volcan Arenal National Park are key when visiting this privileged part of the country.
  • Monteverde: Monteverde is a misty and cloudy small town in Puntarenas and is considered a major tourist destination due to its numerous reserves with naturally impressive rain and cloud forests.  It was voted as one of Costa Rica’s Seven Wonders, along with Isla del Coco, Tortuguero, Arenal Volcano, Cerro Chirripó, Río Celeste and Poás Volcano.
  • Central Pacific: Central Pacific’s rainforests are located in Carara National Park and Manuel Antonio National Park.  It’s the perfect combination of exotic tropical forests and gorgeous white sand beaches.
  • Guanacaste National ParkGuanacaste National Park is part of the Area de Conservación Guanacaste World Heritage Site, located in northern Costa Rica.   It was created to allow a corridor between the dry forest and rain forest areas which many species migrate between seasonally.
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