La Amistad International Park
Experience the magic of pure untouched nature at La Amistad International park. Proudly protected by both Panama and Costa Rica, La Amistad International Park is the largest and most remote nature reserve in Central America. The stunning 991,000-acre tropical forest located at the top of the Central Mountain Range is renowned for its biodiversity, and features animal species that can only be found in the area. In fact, UNESCO named La Amistad International Park a World Heritage Site in 1983 for its astounding diversity of plant and animal life.
There are plenty of mountain trails to take you deep into the mist-covered forests, and if you’re lucky, you may even get to see the resplendent Quetzal—a striking bird that was once sacred to the ancient Mayans and Aztecs. Wildlife lovers should also look out for big cats such as pumas, jaguars, margays and ocelots, as well as sloths, monkeys and the endangered tapir, plus 600 other bird species. While you’re there, expect to see panoramic views of Baru Volcano—Panama’s highest point.
We highly recommend bringing a hiking guide when you visit La Amistad International Park. Though trails are abundant, they are not well documented. On your hike, you’ll venture through dense cloud forests, and into tropical rainforests, all within a few minutes, which means temperatures can vary greatly due to the many microclimates inside the park. To experience everything the park has to offer, consider camping there for a multi-day journey.
The best way to get to La Amistad International Park is from the town of Las Nubes, located in the Chiriqui province, which you can easily reach by car or bus from the town of David.
The closest lodging options can be found in the town of Cerro Punta.