All about Marino Ballena National Park

ballena marine national park costa rica

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Costa Rica is “the green country” and of pure life. You still have time to discover every little corner of this natural wonder, and you can start by visiting the Ballena Marine National Park in Costa Rica.

History of Marino Ballena National Park

On June 9, 1992, the first marine park in Costa Rica and all of Central America was created. So you can already imagine the jewels of flora and fauna of the place. In addition, it is in the top 10 of the best places for whale watching, according to National Geographic.

humpback whale at sea

The idea to create and protect this park came from a group of neighbors and small fishermen from Whale Bay and Piñuelas. They saw the massive and damaging activity that the big fishing companies were doing with the area and wanted to solve it.

Activities in the National Park

You can enjoy this unique place in different ways go whale watching, and thus enjoy the protagonist, the humpback whale. Or you can also do water activities such as scuba diving or snorkeling.

However, not everything is water activities, you can stroll along its beautiful coastline, sunbathing, hiking through its tropical forest and why not enjoy the typical food of Costa Rica?

If you are going on a trip to Costa Rica, we recommend you stop by this place.

Marino Ballena National Park: flora and fauna

The fauna and flora of this protected area is amazing. All this is possible thanks to its humid climate.

Specially noteworthy are the species of whales and dolphins such as the humpback whale, the spotted dolphin and the bottlenose dolphin. But there are many more beautiful marine animals such as manta rays, hammerhead sharks, parrotfish and macarel.

spotted dolphins swimming
Photo by: Marilia Olio

Also, here nests the white ibis and other birds such as the sea scissor-billed and the red-breasted booby. Not to be forgotten are the 17 different species of corals in its waters.

As for the flora, in the tropical rainforest you can find ojoche, cedro maría, chicozapote and lagartillo trees. Come on, for sure if you do some hiking route and go through this spectacular forest, you will discover all its mysteries.

Dimensions and location of the park

The dimensions of the park are enormous, with a coastline 15km long. It can be said that the Morete River and Punta Piñuela delimit this coastal area. All this area is divided into 4 sectors or official access routes: Uvita, Colonia, Ballena and Piñuela. You can access them by the interamerican highway south

In other words, the Ballena Marine National Park is located near San Isidoro de EL General, in the southwest of the country

Opening hours and rates

To explain the opening hours of the Marino Ballena National Park, you must take into account the 3 areas that are open to the public. All of them close on Wednesdays, what differentiates them is the opening and closing hours.

Hours Opening days
Sector Uvita 8:00 am a 4:00 pm from thursday to tuesday
Sector Colonia 9:30 am a 6:00 pm from thursday to tuesday
Sector Ballena 8:00 am a 4:00 pm from thursday to tuesday

The ticket is valid for the whole day and with it you can access the 3 sectors. You can get it at any official stand.

This ticket is free for children under 11 years old and senior citizens.However, the rest of the people must pay for it. If you are a resident the price is
₵1000 + VAT and if you are a NON resident at $ 6 + VAT.

It is very important for you to know that the sand formation in the shape of a whale tail (tombolo) can only be visited during certain hours. Because when the tide rises, it is not accessible.

But don’t worry, all the lodgings have blackboards indicating the tide times, you can also get information at reception or contact the national park by calling 2786-5392 (Monday to Sunday from 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.)

But don’t worry, all the lodgings have blackboards indicating the tide times.

You’ve surely taken note of what’s important about Ballena Marine National Park in Costa Rica and can’t wait to visit. So, just get your backpack ready, have the necessary tickets and set off on your adventure.

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