Rinc贸n de la Vieja, Guanacaste

Rinc贸n de la Vieja is located in the northeast of Liberia, a city in Guanacaste, its located around 5 hours from San Jos茅 the capital of Costa Rica. Rinc贸n de la Vieja offers many attractions for its visitors, here you can spend your days surrounded by magnificent nature; you can participate in a multitude of activities and visit many tourist attractions. Here we will provide you a general information about the area and many things you can enjoy there. This area is of volcanic origin, its land is very fertile and the vegetation is very diverse; this varies according to the distance this volcanic cone. The areas great natural and cultural wealth gives life to this area, making it worthy of being visited, and is one of the most scenic destinations in Costa Rica. Near this area you will find many lodging options, to suit all budgets; most of these places offer excellent views of the Pacific, the Caribbean and the Nicaragua Lake.

The main attraction is the volcano, that bears the locations name, which in turn gives rise to many tourist attractions such as hot springs, animals, rivers and the surrounding population. Due to the varied topography of the area there is a great diversity of species; they have identified 260 species of birds like the peacock, the tucancillo and hummingbirds, among others; besides mammals, among the most common can be found the agouti, tapir, peccary, anteater, sloth bear, the howler, deer, pumas, spider monkey and Capuchin monkey. In addition there are many insects; and here you will find the genus morpho butterflies. It is a great location do admire many species. The Rinc贸n de la Vieja National Park was declared by Act No. 5398 on October 23, 1973; this park covers 14,300 hectares and is divided into two sectors of tourist visitation, one is Las Pailas and Santa Maria; both sectors have very particular atractions, due to the importance of their ecosystems. The Rinc贸n de la Vieja National Park is a volcanic mass which contains nine craters; this Park is part of the watershed between the Caribbean and the Pacific. The largest population existing in the wild of the Guaria Morada (national flower of Costa Rica) is protected in this area.

Las Pailas

Here you will find a combination of volcanic components, fumaroles, lagoons and mud flows; in this part you can see great variety of ecosystems and stunning landscapes. In this sector you can see the active crater of the volcano Rinc贸n de la Vieja, its waterfalls (Las Escondidas y la Cangreja), grassland regeneration, and primary forests; all this through trails 100% natural, with odds of spotting birds, mammals and reptiles.

In this part you can visit:

  • Las Pailas circular path.
  • The falls path, there you’ll see Las Escondidas waterfall and La Cangreja waterfall.
  • The Active Crater Trail

In addition, this sector has several services for visitors, such as:

  1. Ranger office; here you will find information about the national park, but it’s important to know that these rangers handle a basic English level.
  2. The camping area is located 200 meters from the information booth, in the forest; up to 40 people maximum.
  3. Public bathrooms
  4. Showers.
  5. Washbasins
  6. Coffee table
  7. Iron grate (grill) for the visitors
  8. Drinking water
  9. Lunch area: located along the Colorado River. With access only in the dry season.

It is important that you know is forbidden to use soaps or detergents in the river. This sector also has parking at the entrance; this is private property located outside the national park.

Santa Mar铆a

For many years, the sector was a family farm, until in 1973 it was annexed to the administration of Guanacaste Conservation Area. It is a place of great biological interest, high beauty scenic and is composed of volcanic, natural and cultural events. This sector is entered by La Victoria and you have to continue along a path of ballast stone to the intersection of Colonias Blanca and Libertad, then you must to divert 2.5 km to the northwest to get to the administrative area. Here you can find:

  • The Santa Maria house
  • Colibr铆 Trail
  • Bosque Encantado Waterfall
  • Pailas (cold water)
  • Hot Springs

This sector also has several services for visitors, such as:

  1. La Casona Santa Mar铆a (visitor center); maximum 20 people.
  2. Observatory; this is a small hill behind the Casona Santa Maria, with year-round access. You can see the Miravalles volcano, around the town of St. Jorge and the lowlands of Guanacaste, near the Tempisque River.
  3. Camping area for up to 30 people.
  4. Public bathrooms
  5. Showers.
  6. Washbasins
  7. Coffee table
  8. Iron grate (grill) for the visitors
  9. Drinking water

Rinc贸n de la Vieja National Park is the perfect place to escape the sun drenched beaches of Guanacaste, and enjoy the fresh mountain air, this place around Rinc贸n de La Vieja volcano is very active, this geothermal activity produces heat, so which there are very famous the hot springs and bubbling mud pools; the mud is very therapeutic, and taking mud baths is a great way to relieve body aches after a long day of exploration. The best time to visit the area is between November and April, when you can expect low amounts of precipitation and a greater chance of seeing wildlife. The active Crater is located on the northern edge of the Rinc贸n de la Vieja National Park; but this park has nine eruptive outbreaks, which formed the Rinc贸n de la Vieja massif; these are aligned northwest - Southeast, the most popular are the Von Seebach crater, the active crater, the Rinc贸n de la Vieja and Santa Maria. To the South, in the foothills of the volcano you can find Las Pailas and Las Hornillas; are jets of steam rising and boiling mud, in which mud bubbles due to the output of vapours and gases.

The springs originate streams of water and holes through which these fumes rise. In the absence of rain they can become dry in the summer time. Remember that in this national park you can enjoy activities such as visiting the viewpoints, birdwatching, trails and camping areas; outside the National Park you can visit nearby national parks as the Santa Rosa National Park, the Guanacaste National Park and Miravalles protective area. You can also participate in many activities near the Rinc贸n de la Vieja Park, you can go horseback riding, on canopy tours and much more.

Rinc贸n de la Vieja National Park

How to get to Rinc贸n de la Vieja

There are many ways to reach this beautiful area, you can choose to:

Shuttle Transportation Services

Interbus is the best option for travel to or from the main tourist spots in Costa Rica, without having to drive; if you don’t have reservation yet, we recommend you check the schedules and prices of Interbus, Enter here ; or if you want to book Click here . You can also contact by mail at Info@interbusonline.com and gladly we can advise you on your journey.

Rent a car

If you want to rent a car, you can enter http://adobecar.com/; here you will find variety of cars and information to rent them.

Public Transportation

You can take public bus from San Jos茅 to the Liberia city; the bus terminal is located on 24 street and 5-7 Avenue in San Jose down town, the company responsible for providing this service is called Pulmitan. Once in Liberia is due to take other transportation to your hotel; our recommendation if you travel by public bus to coordinate with your hotel transportation from the Liberia city to your hotel.

If you are a nature lover, this area is perfect for you; visit Rinc贸n de la Vieja and enjoy all the attractions it has for you...

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