Los Quetzales National Park

South Central

Declared a national park in July of 2005, Los Quetzales National Park has the distinction of being the most recent addition to Costa Rica's extensive park system. The park encompasses what was formerly the Los Santos Forest Reserve, stretching across 12,355 acres (5,000 hectares), three types of rainforest, and fourteen different ecosystems. Set at a high altitude (between 2,000-3,000 meters) along the Talamancan mountain range, much of the park is covered in cloud forest and protects a crucial habitat for a number of plant and animal species.

Perhaps the most notable of these animals is the quetzal, for whom the park was named. Although the bird is renowned for being elusive and skittish, park authorities claim that the quetzal is easier to spot here than in the cloud forests of Monteverde and Santa Elena, which lay to the north. Not surprisingly, bird watching is quite popular here, as it gives visitors the chance of spotting this "must-see"? bird. Other bird species residing within the park include colibri, trogons, tanagers, and hummingbirds. Sloths, coyotes and pumas are also rumored to sidle through the park's limits.

The park's terrain varies widely from mountains to lakes, cloud forests to rainforests, rivers to streams, there is a bit of everything in this park. Most of the park lies on both sides of the Río Savegre, which originates in the Cerro de la Muerte and empties into the Pacific Ocean near Manuel Antonio. Oak and cypress trees grow at the higher altitudes, and significant portions of the park are covered in aguacatillo trees, which are a relative of the avocado and one of the quetzal's favorite foods. All kinds of exotic flowers dot the landscape, adding bits of color to the overwhelmingly green terrain. With an average rainfall that varies from 79-188 inches, the topography of the park is bounteous and bursting with life.

Los Quetzales National Park, lying 47 southeast of San Jose, is easy to reach from Manuel Antonio. From Jacó it's about a two-hour trip. The entrance to the park is on Cerro de la Muerte, just before the turnoff for San Gerardo de Dota.

Nearby Lodging

 

Santa Juana Lodge

Quepos

Restaurant

& More

New Hotel!
From$277

Santa Juana Lodge

Staying at Santa Juana Lodge, you’ll get to experience Costa Rica’s agro-tourism at its finest. These accommodations put you in the heart of Costa Rica’s awe-inspiring...

New Hotel!
Rooms and Rates

El Toucanet Lodge

Santa Maria de Dota

Free Breakfast

Restaurant

& More

5.0 / 5.0
From$88

El Toucanet Lodge

Set amidst the cloud forest near Santa Maria de Dota in the south central region of Costa Rica, El Toucanet Lodge provides a comfortable, rustic setting with panoramic...

5.0 / 5.0
Rooms and Rates

Paraiso Quetzal Lodge

San Isidro del General

Cable TV

Free Breakfast

Restaurant

& More

4.8 / 5.0
From$259

Paraiso Quetzal Lodge

Paraíso Quetzal lodge offers guests cabins in the midst of Costa Rica’s most interesting national parks. This hotel has received Costa Rica’s “blue flag” award for its...

4.8 / 5.0
Rooms and Rates

Pacific Paradise Resort

Quepos

Air Conditioning

Bar

Cable TV

Free Breakfast

Restaurant

& More

3.8 / 5.0
From$117

Pacific Paradise Resort

The Pacific Paradise Resort is settled upon a private nature reserve just outside of the town of Quepos, part of Costa Rica’s Central Pacific region. Quickly becoming...

3.8 / 5.0
Rooms and Rates

Trogon Lodge

San Gerardo de Dota

Bar

Free Breakfast

Restaurant

& More

4.7 / 5.0
From$146

Trogon Lodge

The small, charming Trogon Lodge sits on the highest peak in the lush Central Valley highlands of Costa Rica. This magical and rustic lodge is a short two hour drive...

4.7 / 5.0
Rooms and Rates

Hotel Mono Azul

Manuel Antonio

Air Conditioning

Bar

Cable TV

Restaurant

Swimming Pool

& More

4.0 / 5.0
From$79

Hotel Mono Azul

El Mono Azul, or the Blue Monkey, is located in Manuel Antonio on the beautiful Pacific coast. As you travel to Manuel Antonio you'll pass through the town of Quepos,...

4.0 / 5.0
Rooms and Rates

Villa Romantica

Quepos

Air Conditioning

Bar

Cable TV

Free Breakfast

Jacuzzi

& More

4.6 / 5.0
From$112

Villa Romantica

The Villa Romantica lies just on the outskirts of the popular fishing town of Quepos, on Costa Rica’s the Central Pacific coast. Quepos boasts excellent sport fishing...

4.6 / 5.0
Rooms and Rates

Condotel Las Cascadas

Quepos

Air Conditioning

Bar

Cable TV

Swimming Pool

Wireless Internet

& More

3.8 / 5.0
From$135

Condotel Las Cascadas

Condotel Las Cascadas is located in the Puntarenas province, in the town of Quepos along Costa Rica’s Central Pacific coast. This destination is renowned for its natural...

3.8 / 5.0
Rooms and Rates

Hotel California

Manuel Antonio

Air Conditioning

Bar

Cable TV

Free Breakfast

Restaurant

& More

3.6 / 5.0
From$168

Hotel California

Hotel California sits in the renowned area of Manuel Antonio, known for its gorgeous national park and stunning beaches. Set on a mountain with views of the ocean and...

3.6 / 5.0
Rooms and Rates