Tortuguero National Park (TNP) is located in northeastern Costa Rican and is one of the country’s main tourist icons, internationally recognized for its protection of the largest green turtle nesting beach in the Western Hemisphere.
Tortuguero was declared a national park on Sept. 24, 1970, and 99% of the land area is used for absolute protection of resources, 1% is used for visitation facilities, and 100% of the marine area is designated for absolute conservation.
Often called, “Costa Rica’s Amazon”, Tortuguero is a navigable network of lakes and channels that crosses this National Park and allows a great diversity of fauna and flora to be observed close at hand. This area is one of the country’s most popular eco-tourism destinations due to its extraordinary scenic beauty and rich biodiversity. The canals, rivers, beaches, and lakes of this area are a working laboratory of rain forest, fresh water and marine biology and where it’s possible to observe Iguana basking in trees, Monkeys and Sloths in the forest canopy, and the Raphia Palm with the largest leaves of any plant.
Tortuguero and the North Caribbean are formed by a great plain which floods with the water that descends from the rivers of the Central Mountain Range, such as the Pacuare, Reventazon and Parismina. It has extended areas covered with tropical forests, a habitat for many species, some in danger of extinction such as; Red frogs, green macaw, Baird’s Tapir, Jaguars, and marine turtles. There are places to stay in town or along the canals from very basic to almost luxurious.
You will be amazed by the beauty of these canals, rivers and lagoons, which were used before by foreign companies as the transport means for extracting wood, bananas, cocoa and other products and which nowadays lead you to one of the most bio- diverse places in the world.
This area is the most important nesting ground for the Green Sea Turtle in the Western Caribbean. During the summer months (July – September), thousands of turtles come ashore along these world-famous beaches to lay their eggs. In one of nature’s most amazing spectacles, Leatherback turtles nest along the beaches from February to May