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CR-Tortuguero Park aerial.jpeg (147956 bytes) COSTA RICA

Tortuguero National Park

Where to stay:
Tortuga Lodge Mawamba Lodge

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ABOUT TORTUGUERO NATIONAL PARK - in the words of Mawamba Lodge:

Founded as a National Park 26 years ago, Tortuguero is an area of great biological diversity, where 11 different habitats have been identified, as well as 309 species of birds including toucans, macaws, egrets, herons and an infinity of other species. Wildlife is impressive: crocodiles, three different species of monkeys (white-faced, howler and spider), sloths, endangered manatees, iguanas, lizards, among many others. The park area extends to 18.947 ha (46.818 acres) on land and 52.265 ha (129.147 acres) of marine habitat.

Located in the Northeast area of the Caribbean Coast of Costa Rica, Tortuguero is often compared to as the "Amazon of Costa Rica" for it's rich vegetation, fauna and the navigable network of lagoons and canals that cross the National Park from Southeast to the Northwest. The park is only accessible by land/boat or by air. By land it is a 3 hour drive from San José towards the embarkation point followed by a 2 to 2 ˝ river boat trip along the Canals of Tortuguero. By air, it takes 30 minutes from San José to the Tortuguero Airstrip.

The beach at Tortuguero is the most important site in the occidental half of the Caribbean for the nesting of the Green Sea Turtle (Chelonia Mydas) that occurs between July and September.

The area is part of the ecosystem known as "very humid Tropical Rain forest", where rainfall averages 197 inches (5.000 mm) per year, but it can go up to 236 inches (6.000 mm) in some parts. Elevation goes from sea level to 1.020 fee (311 meters) in the Tortuguero Hill (Sierpe Hill). Climate is warm and humid, average annual temperature is 80oF (36oC).