The last station on our wonderful tour through Costa Rica was Rincón de la Vieja National Park. It covers a dry tropical forest region centered around the Volcano Rincón de la Vieja, and the surrounding volcanic and natural features. At the moment the volcano is not active and does not represent any danger for eruption. Thirty two rivers have their sources within the park. Forests protect the rivers from evaporation in the dry season and and from flooding in the wet season. Sights include an extraordinary amount of interesting flora and fauna, as well as plenty of hot bubbling sulphurous mud pits and a little “mini-volcano.” It has lots of volcanic activity, fumaroles, boiling mud pots, vapor vents, sulfur vents, forests, wild life. Approximately 300 bird species inhabit the park.
The flora is absolutely amazing. Very impressive are the strangler figs (Germ: Würgefeige). In figs of this type, seed germination usually takes place in the canopy of a host tree with the seedling living as an epiphyte until its roots establish contact with the ground, after which it enlarges and strangles its host, eventually becoming a freestanding tree in its own right. Individuals may reach 30 m (100 ft) in height.Another absolute amazing plant adaptation is the walking palm tree (Socratea exorrhiza), which ‘walks around’. This is because of its unusual root system; while most trees have one trunk, the palm splits into many smaller roots a few feet off the ground, giving it the appearance of many little legs.
The tree slowly ‘walks’ from shade to sunlight by growing new roots toward the light and allowing the old roots interfering with its wanderlust to die.”
On Mar 20 we started towards the Tamarindo Playa where we spent three wonderful beach days in the excellent hotel Tamarindo Diria beach Hotel on the Pacific Coast.