Barbilla National Park is located on the eastern slopes of the Cordillera de Talamanca that is the highest and wildest non-volcanic mountain range in Central America. Much of the range and the area around it is included in the La Amistad International Park, which is shared between Costa Rica and Panama. This park not only protects the forests but also the Cerro Tigre, Laguana Ayil and the Dantas River watershed (an important source of water for the people and animals of the region). The park is nestled next to the Chirripó Indigenous Reserve, which continues to lead a modestly traditional existence.
This park was developed in 1982. Over 11,938 ha of wet lowlands and tropical rainforest along the slope of Caribbean of the Talamanca mountain range, is protected by the park. Barbilla National Park is relatively unspoiled and rich in its biodiversity as it is one of the least visited park of the country. As this is highly rich in its diversity, Cabecar tribe makes this area as their home and this tribe is considered as the second largest native group of the country. This particular tribe is living in this area for longer period of time and they depend on fishing and hunting for surviving.
Way to the Park and Facilities:
It is difficult to access the Barbilla National Park. Main entrance of the park is 2 miles or 20 km from the city of Siquirres off the highway to Limon. There is a Biological Station in the Barbilla National Park and this station’s efforts are made toward the classification of species and insect parataxonomy. This Barbilla Biological Station is run by the National Institute of Biodiversity. The park’s administration building is nestled in the town Brisas de Pacuarito and after turning off the highway the visitors need to follow a 10 mile dirt road to the town to reach the office. This building has different facilities including sanitary services, potable water, radio communication system and electricity. Though the trails wind through the park and trail maps are available, visitors are strongly recommended to take help from an expert local guide.
People who are avid hikers will find many thing to explore and do in the Barbilla National Park. While hiking through the trails, you can also explore the beauty of the area from a different view. It is necessary to notify a park ranger as there are many paths which are unmarked and the ground can be quite difficult. People who are not experienced hiker but want to enjoy hiking in this park, they are recommended to go with an experienced guide. It will be a thrilling experience to get the most out of the trip to Barbilla and explore the amazing natural beauty of the park.
Bird-watching and Wildlife Watching:
The park remains wet and verdant as the annual rainfall of this area is 140-180. This rainfall allows a great amount of biological diversity to flourish. Many rare but endangered species live within the park, including jaguars, ocelots, pumas, tapirs and several birds of prey. This nature reserve is also an ideal place for birdwatchers because many other rare avian species like sun heron and tolomuco can also be seen in this park.
Best time to visit the park:
During the month between November and April is the high time to visit the park.