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Carate Wildlife Refuge Costa Rica was created on November 4th 1998, to protect forested and beach areas on the Osa Peninsula, of Costa Rica’s Southern Pacific Coast. This refuge is best known for its over 2 miles of Black Volcanic beach sand, which is great for swimming, but not for surfing.
The Carate Wildlife Refuge is an important nucleus for the management of natural resources, especially for the protection and conservation of life species typical of this type of ecosystem, forming a biological corridor between Corcovado National Park and Golfo Dulce Forest Reserve.
Most people love to go to this beach to watch the scarlet macaws as they feast on almonds in the many almond trees lining the beach. This refuge also is home for a wide variety of wildlife, pretty similar to the one you can find in Corcovado National Park, due to its proximity, such as all four species of Costa Rican monkeys (howler, capuchin, spider and squirrel), as well as pacas, kinkajous, raccoons, agouties, anteaters, coaties, sloths, butterflies and reptiles. In addition, 150 species of birds have been identified, including parrots, ibis, pelicans, herons and owls, among others.
The weather is typical of the Osa Peninsula, hot and humid, a rugged and wild area with very heavy rains and thick evergreen forest, making it one of the wettest places in the world. Rainfall is abundant all year long but in October and November it can rain over 700mm, which feeds innumerable waterways and encourages the growth of very tall trees laden with epiphytes. The dry season is from February through April.
There are no public facilities at Carate National Wildlife Refuge. Other nearby parks includes Corcovado National Park, Agua Buena Wildlife Refuge, Laguna Azul Wildlife Refuge and Golfo Dulce Forest Reserve.
Getting to Carate Wildlife Refuge:
From San Jose, take the Pan-American Highway to Piedras Blancas until La Chacarita gas station. Then take the exit to the right (dirt road) to Puerto Jimenez and continue towards Carate beach. The total distance from San Jose is about 7 hours.
Take a bus from the route San Jose – Puerto Jimenez, which takes about 8 hours (Transportes Blanco, 2771-4744). From here you can rent a car and drive, take a taxi or take another bus from the route Puerto Jimenez – Carate beach. We recommend buying the ticket a day earlier to be sure your seat is saved.
You can also take a bus from the route San Jose – Golfito, which takes about 8 hours (Tracopa-Alfaro, 2221-4214). From here you can take a boat to Puerto Jimenez and then rent a car and drive, take a taxi or take another bus from the route Puerto Jimenez – Carate beach. We recommend buying the ticket a day earlier to be sure your seat is saved.
You can also take a flight from the Juan Santamaria Airport to the Puerto Jimenez or Golfito Airports, either with Sansa or Nature Air airlines, both with daily flights. From here you can rent a car and drive or take a taxi to Carate Wildlife Refuge, which takes about 30 minutes.
Location: South Corcovado National Park in Osa Peninsula, district: Puerto Jimenez, canton: Golfito, province: Puntarenas, Costa Rica. Zone postal code: 60702.
GPS Coordinates: 8.444228,-83.4626 (8°26’39.22″N, 83°27’45.36″W)
Size: 123 ha (304 acres)
Osa Conservation Area (ACOSA) Telephone: +(506) 2735-5580 / 2735-5276
INFOTUR Tourist Information: 1192