Discover the real highlights of Central America and the Dominican Republic

Discover the real highlights of Central America and the Dominican Republic

Volcanoes such as Tajumulco in Guatemala or Baru in Panama, Sirribo in Costa Rica or Duarte in the Dominican Republic are the highest peaks in the region. Climbing.

Although the beaches of paradise in Central America and the Dominican Republic are known to many tourists, few know that the area is full of high peaks. For example, the extinct Tajumulco volcano in Guatemala, at 4,222 meters above sea level, is the highest in the entire region. But Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic and Panama also have peaks with majestic views: sometimes you can go up in a jeep – somewhat – but often it requires steep climbs.

Guatemala: Tajumulko volcano

At 4,222 m above sea level, Tajumulko is the tallest volcano not only in Guatemala but throughout Central America. Declared a protected area in 1956, it covers an area of ​​4,472 hectares in the San Marcos area west of the country. Small eruptions occurred in 1821 and 1863, but it has been dormant ever since. This volcano is considered as one of the best places to climb and camp. Tajumulko has two peaks, the largest being in the east and a small depression about 50-70 meters in diameter. The smallest is called the Cerro Concepción and stands at an altitude of 4,100 meters.

Potatoes, vegetables and other edibles are grown on the slopes, and many woolly goats can be found. At the height of the middle of the mountain, the plants consist mainly of oak forest, oamyl fir, juniper and cones, which make the climb exceptionally beautiful. At an altitude of 4,000 meters above sea level, the ecosystem is primarily alpine tundra, where alpine meadows (jacadonalls) and algae are the main vegetation, with no tree growth at this altitude.

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Costa Rica: Zero Sirribo

Established in 1975 in the Chirripó National Park, Cerro Chirripó is one of the highest mountains in Central America at 3,820 meters above sea level. Covering an area of ​​50,920 hectares, the park is located on the 320 km long Cordillera de Talamanca Mountains in Costa Rica.

To get to the park you have to go to the village of San Gerardo de Rivas, from where the trek starts through this forest area. From the top of Cerro Chirripó you can see beautiful views of the Caribbean and Pacific beaches on clear days. The park is home to a large number of wildlife such as tapirus, jaguar, quetzal bird and goldfinch. Birds can be seen at various heights in the park. Mariposa Hostel is located at an altitude of 3,400 m above sea level in Valle de los Crestones.

Dominican Republic: Pico Duarte

Pico Duarte is a peak in the central part of the Cordillera of the Dominican Republic, with an elevation of 3,084 meters, the highest point in the Antilles Myers. It is located between two national parks, Armando Bermudas National Park and Jos del Carmen Ramirez National Park, and can be reached on a two or three day excursion depending on the route chosen.

The most popular route takes two days and departs from Jarabacoa-Manabao-La Ciénaga-Compartición-Valle de Lilís to Pico Duarte. All routes guarantee spectacular views of the tropical rainforest. It is mandatory to hire an official guide and donkeys (for luggage and food) at your hotel or at the government camp at La Cianca at the entrance to Jose Armando Bermudas National Park. During the trip, you will spend the night in the official camps of Compartición or Lilies Valley. The tour requires a reasonable amount of exercise, a good pair of walking shoes and multi-layered clothing for high temperatures and low temperatures.

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Panama: New Volcano

Covering an area of ​​14,325 hectares, Baru Volcano National Park is located in the province of Sirigui in northern Panama. Situated at an altitude of 3,475 meters above sea level, the highest point in the country, the park runs a number of hiking trails and trails, including La Nevera, El Pianista and Los Quetzales.

The ascent of Baru Volcano is a rough climb over a bumpy road in 4 to 6 hours or 30 minutes in a 4WD car. On a clear day, you can see the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans from above. You can even walk along the paths up to the craters of the Baru volcano where you can also see unique bird species. If you want to stay active at the lowest level, go rafting or canoeing on mighty rivers like the Siriqui Vizo with many rapids. Places like Respingo Bass are ideal for bird watching, especially quetzal and token or beautiful orchids, ferns and algae. The city of Bouquet in eastern Panama, at the foot of the Baru volcano, is an ideal base for these outdoor activities.

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