Punta Leona Nature Reserve, near Jaco Costa Rica

Located on Costa Rica’s Central Pacific coast is the important nature reserve of Punta Leona. This reserve, in the Puntarenas province, is one of the most vital areas in the Pacific from a conservation and geographical view. Punta Leona is home to one of the last remaining forests that are found in the transitional life zone between the rainforests of the Southwest and the dry forests of the Northwest.

The Punta Leona Refuge was established over 25 years ago to protect the region’s unique flora and fauna. This Costa Rica private nature reserve measures 750 acres and consists of lush primary and secondary forests. A bird and mammal research center, this reserve has over 330 migratory and native Costa Rica bird species. Beautiful, exotic, and tropical, the Punta Leona Refuge got added attraction when it was part of a Hollywood movie starring famous French actor Gerard Depardieu.

Still an unknown gem to most tourists because of its unique location, Punta Leona is a fascinating place to visit for nature lovers, bird watchers, and families. Visitors are given a rare insight into the rich biological diversity of Costa Rica. Home to the endangered Scarlet Macaw, the reserve is home to a number of indigenous birds and animals such as the Three-wattled Bellbird, Marbled Wood-Quail, Hummingbirds, Toucans, Spider Monkeys, White-faced Monkeys, White-nosed Coatimundis, iguanas, and a variety of beautiful butterflies.

Located near a pristine white sand beach, Punta Leona has three different walking and hiking trails. They are easily accessible and prefect for bird watching. There is a small entrance fee to the park. A Costa Rica hotel resort is located directly on the reserve.

While on Costa Rica’s Central Pacific, visit nearby Manuel Antonio National Park and the Carara National Park. Punta Leona is only 1 hour west of San Jose and takes you through the town of Tarcoles. Coming from the south, Punta Leona is a few kilometers north of Playa Hermosa and Playa de Jaco.