Golfito, Golfo Dulce, Costa Rica

The port town of Golfito was founded in the late 1930s by the infamous United Fruit Company. Within a short time it was built into a prosperous trade centre. Golfito was the most important port in southern Costa Rica.  However it suffered an economic depression after the United Fruit Company moved it's headquarters out in 1985 and allowed their real estate to return to the Costa Rican government.  The following year the government established the Golfito Reserve or Refugio National de Vida Silvestre - establishing a kind of limited national park or wildlife refuge area.

 In April 1990 a duty-free shopping zone was opened in Golfito which attracts ticos (native Costa Ricans) as well as resident foreigners from all over the country. The tourism resulting from the duty-free shopping zone and the Eco-tourism industry around Golfito are helping to revive the region and boost the struggling local economy.

When we got to the Golfito Reserve it was just starting to drizzle. Dutifully we put on our anoraks and headed out along a muddy path, but soon after crossing a river, we had to turn round because the path was closed due to a fallen tree. So we never saw the intended waterfall. And, as we headed back to the entrance and the buses, the heavens opened and the tropical rain that we had managed to avoid since leaving Fort Lauderdale came down in buckets.

I did not take many photos as it was raining from the start. This is a government park and not a private one, so it did not seem to have a sense of pride in what it was doing. There is very little written about it on the web - the government appears to be pushing the development of the area with ex-pat housing and the duty free shopping, and the nature reserve seems to have been left behind.

Click on any of the thumbnails to get a bigger version of the picture


On to next port - Isla Coco, Costa Rica

Silver Explorer Oct 2019