Beautiful Rainforests in Costa Rica

Costa Rica nature has always been one of the reasons why tourists keep coming back to this tiny country bordered by Nicaragua and Panama. Despite its size tourists and travelers still consider this country one of the best hosts for tourist vacations and that is because of its abundance in natural diversity. More than a quarter of Costa Rica’s total land area consists of natural reserves and conservations, national parks and wildlife refuges.

Costa Rica national parks and rain forest may be the best this country has to offer considering that the Parque Nacional Manuel Antonio is the most visited park which was created back in 1972. The land area encompasses 682 hectares which makes it the tiniest national park in the country but is reputable for its spectacular beauty.

Despite numerous rainforest in Costa Rica, the Manuel Antonio National Park is among the rain forest vacations that promises a terrific nature adventure for the entire family. The Manual Antonio National Park located in the Puntarenas province along the country’s Central Pacific coast is pretty accessible for tourists who came from San Jose, the largest and capital city. This park is also near Jaco, one of the most popular beaches in the country situated north of the Puntarenas province. Also near is the popular town of Quepos which encompasses some superb selection of restaurants, hotels, resorts and the best accommodations.

Most rainforests in Costa Rica have gained its popularity because of the gorgeous beaches, lush rainforests, exquisite coral reefs and diverse exotic species including birds and other animal species. The Manuel Antonio National Park houses some of the best beaches in the country that offers exhilarating water activities including surfing and snorkeling but also outlined with lush forestation.

Another popular Costa Rican rainforests is the Monteverde Cloud Forest which is actually called a cloud forest in Costa Rica because of its location at a much higher altitude. The Monteverde Cloud Forest is considered a very important ecotourism destination in the country. Also located in the Puntarenas province, about is 6 km east of Santa Elena and is a 4 hour drive from San Jose. This reserve is considered one of the most breathtaking and dazzling natural reserves in the entire world.

Consisting eight biological zones, the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve covers an area of 10,522 hectares of the Costa Rican rain forest and houses more than 2000 plant and tree species, 100 species of mammals, and 400 bird species and about 1200 species of amphibians and reptiles. Its landscape is a healthy habitat for more than 300 species of orchids and 200 species of fern.

Another popular tourist destination among the Costa Rica rainforest is the Tortuguero National Park which gained its reputation for the best nesting site in Costa Rica. The striking Parque Nacional Tortuguero which is the home of the endangered green turtle rests on the country’s Caribbean coast. It protects over 22 miles of beach strip from the end of the river Tortuguero and is the primary nesting spot for leatherback sea turtles, loggerhead sea turtles and hawksbill sea turtles. This park was propped up in 1970 mainly to protect the green turtle population from extinction.

Located in the untamed Osa Peninsula, the Corovado National Park is considered one of the most stunning yet remote parks in the country. It is home to that largest and only tropical primary lowland rain forest in the world. It encompasses an abundance of endangered animal and plant species.

Cairns – Travel Capital Of Tropical North Australia

Originally founded in 1876 as a service port for the North Queensland goldfields, Cairns is today the international gateway to North Queensland. With a population of 100,000, the Cairns region offers a healthy, relaxed lifestyle with the local economy based on tourism, agriculture, manufacturing, mining and fishing industries. The Cairns International Airport provides a first point of entry for both Australian and International travellers.

Cairns is surrounded to the north, west and south by magnificent rainforests, many of which are protected by World Heritage listings. To the east is Great Barrier Reef and the Coral Sea. The wealth of natural beauty in the Cairns region provides the perfect setting for a huge range of activities including swimming, snorkelling, diving, sailing, jet-skiing, white water rafting, bushwalking, fishing, hot air ballooning or simply enjoying the fantastic scenery on a drive out of town to Mossman Gorge, Port Douglas, Kuranda or the Nandroya Falls.

The Esplanade in the centre of Cairns, is where restaurants, cafes, markets, nightclubs, pubs and shopping arcades are located, and is also the departure point for most reef tours and island cruises. Accommodation is plentiful in Cairns, with the Esplanade and surrounding areas offering quality accommodation ranging from luxury apartments and five star hotels to caravan parks and camping areas.

Set in a lush tropical environment, the water-based activities available in Cairns are endless. Whether sailing the beautiful waters of the Great Barrier Reef and the islands, canoeing or jet-skiing on the bays and lakes, taking a casual cruise or a dynamic jet boat ride, there are adventure tours available for every taste. If fishing is your passion, Cairns is a brilliant destination at any time of the year. Offering excellent angling opportunities for all areas of fishing. Cairns is famous for its Black Marlin fishing and hosts fishing tournaments September to December. Barramundi and Mangrove Jack abound at Trinity Inlet, while freshwater fishing is available further inland on the Atherton Tablelands at Tinaroo Dam. Further afield, the Gulf Savannah and Cape York offer anglers an almost limitless variety of spectacular locations in which to enjoy the fishing experience of a lifetime.

The Rainforests of the Cairns region are another major attraction that simply should not be missed. Home to an amazing diversity of flora and fauna, waterfalls, rivers, lakes and national parks, the rainforests are magical environments containing 200 year old palms where everything seems larger, more colourful and healthier including trees, leaves and seed pods. The rainforests were World heritage listed in 1988 and cover almost one million hectares of lush tropical vegetation. The tropical wet season from January to March is a special time of regeneration and restoration in the rainforest. The rainforests have excellent bushwalking and 4WD tracks, and 4WD Nature Safaris are available. As most rainforest animals are nocturnal, a night excursion can provide the opportunity to view a rich variety of animal life including green tree frogs, pythons, tree climbing kangaroos, geckos and rare possums.

The Great Barrier Reef is located off the Cairns coast to the east in the Coral Sea, and consists of 344,000 square kilometres of warm, clear waters in which an amazing array of sea life abounds, from sea slugs to migrating whales to coral. The many wonders of the Great Barrier Reef can be enjoyed in a variety of ways, including snorkelling, scuba diving, kayaking, sailing, or a plane or helicopter flight.

The Great Barrier Reef includes many magnificent locations for day tours and longer expeditions, including the Hinchinbrook Channel, Mission Beach, Palm Cove, Port Douglas, Cape Tribulation and Cooktown, and Green and Fitzroy Islands. Green Island is a tropical island paradise perfect for a day trip from Cairns where you can enjoy activities such as windsurfing, rainforest walks and snorkelling. The best reefs for snorkelling and diving are Arlington, Elford, Agincourt, Oyster, Michaelmas and Upolu Reefs.

Travel to Brazil – Where to Go?

With a size of 8.5 million square kilometers, Brazil is one of the largest countries in the world. It is about twice as big as Europe (European Union) and in order to know all of it, a lifetime might not be enough.

I once met a journalist, who spent 3 years of his life to visit and film all Brazilian national parks, an area which probably represents less than 5% of the countries territory. Since more than ten years, I am personally working intensively on the rainforest trails in South and Southeast Brazil and sometimes wondering how many of them exist and how long it sometimes takes to come back to the same place.

Who already had the opportunity to travel between São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, a section which looks minuscule on every Brazil map, will agree with me that 10 days is not too much, in order to explore at least some of the treasures that lie between these two metropolitan areas.

So, when you pretend to visit Brazil with a limited time, it may be wise to pre-select some destinations, before travelling. To do so, you may divide Brazil in regions, states, municiples and cities but as a traveller or tourist, a better approach might be, to divide and to understand Brazil in form of its six biomes.

You can select between the tropical Caatinga desert in the northeast, the Cerrado savannah and the Pantanal floodlands in the center west, the Pampa grassland in the south and two rainforest biomes; the Amazon and the Atlantic Rainforest (Mata Atlântica). All of these biomes are flat with the exception of the Atlantic Rainforest, where the Mar / Mantiqueira mountain chains expose mountains of up to 3.000 height meters to the tourist.