- Type: Camping
- Localyte author: Bill Roush
- Attractions Walking: La Amistad extends past the international frontier into Panama, it is the largest protected region in Costa Rica, has more virgin forest than all of the other parks, and it has been estimated that about two-thirds of the total species found in Costa Rica live here. Hikers and backpackers will be rewarded with glimpses of Baird's tapirs, giant anteaters, all six species of neotropical cats - jaguar, puma, ocelot, margay, oncilla and jaguarundi as well as monkeys, coatis, over 600 bird species, 115 species of fish, and almost 300 reptile and amphibian species. If you are interested in insects or plants there is no point in even trying to provide a number to represent their diversity because new species are being discovered at such an amazing rate. Visiting Getting There: Driving Directions Take the Pan American Highway East out of San José, the road curves South and changes designation from Highway 1 to Highway 2, although it's still the Pan American Highway. About 30 miles (50 km) past Cartago you climb over Cerro de la Muerte, which isn't called the mountain of the dead because of all the head on bus collisions there, but it could be (the name actually originated from all of the people who died walking over the pass before the road was much more than a trail). It's not advisable to drive in Costa Rica at night, but especially not here. You will reach San Isidro el General after a total of 92 miles (153 km, approx. 3 1/2 hours). From here on La Amistad is on your left hand side 15 miles (25 km) away until you reach the Panamanian border. There are several entrance stations. There are no paved roads into the park. Access is generally by horse or foot from one of the four Puestos (outposts/entrance stations) on the Pacific side of the Talamanca Cordillera (4WD required to reach each of them). Estación Altimira is the park headquarters, and is located 12 miles (20 km) north of Guácimo. Other entrances are from Estación Tres Colinas at Helechales, and in the Las Tablas region, Estación Pittier at Progresso, and Estación La Escuadra northeast of Santa Elena. Detailed roadmaps are available in acrobat pdf format or printed on waterproof tear proof plastic. Bus There are no buses into the park, but you can get close and take a 4WD taxi or tour from San Vito. 608 San Vito From San José - Departures every day, Terminal Alfaro At 5:45, 8:15, 11:30, 14:45; Returns 4:30, 7:30, 8:30, 10:00, 15:00. Alfaro Bus Company. Telephone (506) 222-2666 Entrance fees: $US 7 Amenities: The trails in La Amistad are unmarked. Camping is allowed at Estación Altimira which has restroom and shower facilities, and Estación Las Tablas which has no facilities and is about a six mile (10 km) hike from Estación Pittier. Lodging: There is no lodging in La Amistad Park.
- The description was provided by Bill Roush
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