Carara National Park Facts

Carara National Park Facts
Carara National Park is a 12,950 acre park located in Costa Rica's Central Pacific Conservation Area. In 1978 it was established as a biological reserve however as interest in the reserve grew it became necessary to upgrade its status to that of a national park, in 1998. The park is only 30 miles west of Sane Jose, which is the capital city of Costa Rica. One of the draws of the park is that it protects a large wild scarlet macaw population. The park is home to 15 archeological sites from the pre-Columbian era including the Pavas and Carthage periods. The park is one of 28 national parks in the country.
Interesting Carara National Park Facts:
Carara National Park has both tropical forest and dry tropical forest.
Within Costa Rica, Carara National Park is the most northern, intact rain forest of the Pacific coast.
Carara National Park is named after the crocodiles in its boundaries. The word 'Carara' is derived from the Huetar Native language and means 'crocodile'.
Crocodile Bridge in Carara National Park is a popular spot for tourists to stop and peer down at the 20 feet long crocodiles below.
There are many as 450 scarlet macaws living in Carara National Park which makes the park an important reserve for their population.
Because of where the park is located, at the transition zone for Mesoamerican and Amazonian habitat regions - there is great diversity of plants and animals from both regions.
Wildlife that can be seen in Carara National Park includes scarlet macaws, crocodiles, white faced capuchin monkeys, toucans, parrots, herons, kingfishers, aracaris, anteaters, poison arrow frogs, peccaries, agoutis, pacas, coatis, boa constrictors, black ctenosaurs, Fer-de-lances, narrow headed vine snakes, milk frogs, margay cats, spider monkeys, howler monkeys, kinkajous, and many more species.
Because of the large number of tropical birds living in Carara National Park, it is considered by many to be a tropical bird watcher's paradise.
The list of bird species in Carara National Park is extremely long and includes pelicans, vultures, ducks, parrots, kites, hawks, falcons, sandpipers, pigeons, cuckoos, owls, swifts, hermits, kingfishers, woodpeckers, and many more.
Two and three toed sloths are found in Carara National Park.
The two hiking trails located in Carara National Park are Laguna Meandrica Trail (2.7 miles long), and Araceas Nature Trail (0.6 mile long).
The wettest months in Carara National Park are from August to October. Some trails are flooded and not passable.
Within Carara National Park visitors can see secondary forests, primary forests, swamps, lagoons, rivers, and a gallery forest.
Although popular because of its location close to the country's capital city, Carara National Park is not as popular as nearby Manuel Antonio National Park. Carara has more mosquitos because it is wetter.
There is no camping allowed in the park boundaries but there are places outside the park where visitors can arrange to sleep.
A large problem with tourism in Carara National Park is theft. Visitors are advised not to leave valuables in their vehicles or they risk losing them to thieves - even if left in the trunk.

Related Links:
National Parks Facts
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