The beach trail that connects La Leona and Sirena ranger stations follows the primal Pacific coastline. The trail winds off the beach into the edge of the forest in many places so that much of the hike is shaded. The portions of the trail that are on the beach itself offer no shade, and the walking can be made more challenging by dry sand when the hike is taken as the tide is rising.
Two rivers must be crossed during this hike. The Madrigal River, 2.5 kilometers from the La Leona entrance is unlikely to be deeper than waist deep at the most, even at high tide. The Rio Claro, which is only a kilometer or so from Sirena can reach chest high at high tide and is best traversed during periods of low tide. However, even at high tide it is not particularly dangerous. All Corcovado rivers are likely to have occasional crocodiles, and bull sharks feed at the mouths of all rivers, preying indiscriminately in the turbid mixing zone between fresh and salt water. Perhaps more treacherous than large predators, the swift current at the mouths of these rivers may be capable of knocking you off balance. Caution should be exercised at all river crossings.
The Sirena-La Leona hike is rated at 17 kilometers, plus another 2.5 kilometers that separate La Leona and Carate. When the sun is out, this hike can be particularly arduous, and care should be taken to bring plenty of water and sunscreen as needed. A hat is a necessity for this trail.
Sirena Trails: There are a number of trails in the Sirena area, all described here. It is possible to hike all of the trails in a single day. Likely routes to follow include: Espaveles – Guanacaste - Sirena in the morning, and Las Ollas – Corcovado - Claro in the afternoon, or vice-versa. Also, hikers can explore to the northeast along the coastline on the San Pedrillo trail.
Swimming: There is a swimming hole in the Rio Claro along the Claro trail. It is a twenty-minute walk from the ranger station to get there. The beach offers alternative swimming options. Be aware of currents and heavy surf. Do not swim in the vicinity of river mouths as this is where bull sharks feed.
Sea Turtles: Olive Ridley, green, and black sea turtles all use the beaches along the Corcovado coastline for laying eggs. Laying season runs from June through November, and laying turtles can commonly be observed at night (except that night tours are not allowed) during this time period. Sea turtles comprise the jaguar's primary food source during these months, so sea turtle viewing is actually one of the most likely opportunities to spot the elusive jaguar as well.
Night Hiking: Corcovado National Park no longer allows night hikes from Sirena.
ALL INCLUSIVE OR BUDGET - Price are Per Person
|2 PAX||3 PAX||4 PAX|
|3 DAY - ALL INCLUSIVE||$ 580||$ 500||$ 465|
|3 DAY - BUDGET||$ 510||$ 460||$ 435|
|5:00||Departure Jimenez in taxi or colectivo|
|6:30||Arrivation in Carate, starts the hiking to La Leona Ranger Station.|
|8:00||Pass through La Leona check permits and fill water bottles.|
|11:30||Pack lunch in the forest.|
|15:30||Arrival and check-in at Sirena Ranger Station: soft drinks, showers, laundry, lounging.|
|17:45||Dinner, Sirena.||Day Two|
|6:30||Breakfast at Sirena.|
|7:30||Hike one of the Sirena loop trails.|
|11:00||Lunch at Sirena.|
|13:00||Hike a second Sirena loop trail.|
|18:00||Dinner, Sirena||Day Three|
|7:00||Departure (fill water bottles). Hike along the beach trail to the La Leona Ranger Station|
|15:00||Arrival at latest at Carate General Store (the Pulperia). Depending on time you can stop at La Leona Lodge forty minutes prior for ice cold soft drinks, or, even iced cold beer (since you're nearly there).|
|15:30||Departure by private taxi or colectivo from the Carate Pulperia.|
|18:00||Back in Puerto Jimenez|