The Corcovado National Park is a 42,469-hectare park located in the southwestern corner of the Peninsula de Osa. It is composed of eight distinct habitats that range from mangrove swamps, primary rainforest, secondary rainforest, low altitude cloud forest, and sandy coastlines. These habitats support a diverse wildlife population that includes Costa Rica’s largest population of scarlet macaws and other endangered species such as the giant anteater, the harpy eagle, white-lipped peccary, jaguars, and Baird’s tapir. These qualities earned it the label of “the most biologically intense place on earth” from National Geographic. It also has the distinction of being the last great tract of tropical rainforest in Pacific Central America.
The park remains remote to general tourism but is open to the adventure travelers who are willing to travel the distance to get there and experience its natural beauty. Backpackers generally flock there to swim in desert beaches, hike through the rainforest, and bathe under waterfalls.
One can go there by taking the bus, ferry, or airplane. The 699 Puerto Jimenez and 612 Golfito buses have daily departures from San Jose. Travel time straight to Puerto Jimenez will take ten hours, while to Golfito will take eight hours. The ferry from Golfito to Puerto Jimenez usually takes around an hour and a half. Traveling by air is an option but is very expensive compared to land travel.
It is possible to stay overnight in the park as there are camping areas with portable water supply. The six ranger stations located inside the park are equipped with radio and telephone. Camping equipment is available for rent or there is also the option of staying at one of the bunkhouses. Reservations for camping or staying at the bunkhouses are made at the administrative headquarters east of Puerto Jimenez. The town of Puerto Jimenez also offers inexpensive accommodations as well as bicycle, kayak and horse rentals.