Parque Nacional Corcovado is the largest stretch of Pacific coastline primary forest in Central America and home to an amazing variety of animal, bird and plant species including the largest population of scarlett macaws in Central America. You can expect to see large flocks of macaws in flight or feeding on almond trees by the shoreline.
Corcovado is a good place to spot the red-eyed tree frog seen in T-Shirt shops throughout Costa Rica as well as the 'poison-arrow frogs'- don't lick them!!
Corcovado is one of only two places in the country with populations of squirrel monkeys- the other is Manuel Antonio). It’s also one of the last places on earth to spot the harpy eagle.
The Park is also home to tapirs and big cats- around the periphery of the Corcovado Lagoon is the best place to see them. Jaguars are there but under threat from poachers.
The Osa Peninsula has heavy rains from April to December. Many businesses close for October.
The park has 3 entry points:
La Leona, on the southeast corner near Carate.
Los Patos, on the northern perimeter.
San Pedrillo, at the northwest corner, 18 km south of Drake Bay
Corcovado has well-developed trails, a guide is strongly recommended.
Several short trails (2 to 6 hours) make good half- or full-day hikes. Longer trails give an in-depth backpacking experience in the rainforest.
From La Leon to Sirena is about 15km, following the beach for most of the way.
Beyond Salsipuedes Point, the trail cuts inland through the rainforest. Don’t try this at high tide.
Sirena, a trail leads northeast to Los Patos via Corcovado Lagoon.
Another trail—only possible at low tide (because sharks, mostly hammerheads, like to come up the rivermouths in the hours immediately before and after high tide)—leads to the San Pedrillo Ranger Station . There are three rivers to wade. The trick is to reach the Río Sirena and slightly shallower Ríos Llorona before the water is thigh-deep. Keep an eye out for the crocodiles upstream. Halfway, the trail is often slippery. The final 3km follows the beach.
From Los Patos, the trail south starts with a steep climb of 6km before flattening out for the final 14 km to the Sirena Research Station. The trail is well marked but narrow, overgrown in parts, and has several river crossings where it is easy to lose the trail on the other side. You must wade. Be especially careful in rainy season, when you may find yourself waist deep. Another trail leads from Los Patos to Los Planes.
CAUTION: You are in the jungle! Cover up and wear bug spray. Beware of riptides. Sharks reportedly cruise the inshore waters and estauraies, though there are no recorded incidents of unprovoked attacks here. Crocodiles inhabit the estuaries of the Río Claro and Río Sirena.
Getting to Corcovado National Park>
Boats from Marenco and Drake Bay will take you to either San Pedrillo or Sirena.