A packed gravel nature trail that loops below the walkway of El Portal Visitor Center where you can explore the understory of the canopy and get some spectacular views of the lower forest and the coastal plain. The first part of the trail is accessible.
Built in the former La Catalina Nursery. Established in 1945, the nursery grew mostly exotic tree species that were added to all the reforestation efforts in the forest and the entire island. Prior to that it was a coffee farm called La Catalina. This trail offers a prime example of a Secondary Forest, an effect of the recuperation process that is set in motion after natural or human disturbances. You will see breadfruit, plantain, coffee, and papaya trees coexisting with exotic, native, and endemic species in the forest. Excellent for birding; at different times throughout the day, 78 species of birds have been heard. There are also bats, snails, coquís (tree frogs), lizards, and a great variety of insects.
Location: Road 191 km 4.0 at El Portal Visitor Center
Distance: 0.3 miles (0.5 km)
Time: 20 minutes
Elevation: 160-180 meters
Amenities: Visitor Center, Parking, Bathrooms, Gift Shop, Food Concession, Theater and Interpretive Programs
Special Safety Messages: N/A