The picturesque San Lucas island has been designated Costa Rica&rsquos 30th national park. Once home to a notoriously brutal prison, the island located off the Pacific Coast of the Gulf of Nicoya is now a wildlife refuge.
The newly recognised national park covers 4.6 sq. km of both land and coastal areas. As per the newest of services available, visitors can find freshly minted hiking trails, toilets, 24-hour surveillance, and systems for electricity and water, unlike in its earlier days.
The wild inhabitants of the island include howler monkeys, spiders, snakes, deer, and pheasants. All is not forgotten here, as visitors can also explore former prison buildings which have been preserved with over 50 trained guides to help guests learn about the island and the history of the prison founded by the dictator Tomás Miguel Guardia Gutiérrez.
&ldquoSan Lucas Island is part of Costa Rica&rsquos history and heritage, so we are very pleased to reopen it as the country&rsquos 30th national park," Gustavo Segura Sancho, Costa Rica&rsquos tourism ministers says. "It will greatly surprise visitors looking for quieter spots when on holiday.&rdquo
San Lucas Island National Park lies a 40-minute boat ride away from the city of Puntarenas, located 96 km from San José. With Puntarenas hosting Coco Island National Park, San Lucas will be the second largest park in the region.