Last updated on September 25th, 2023
Cerro Chirripó in Costa Rica is the highest mountain with an altitude of 3,820 meters (12,533 feet) with a protected extension area of 50 thousand hectares (123,552.69 acres) of land.
This makes this place to be visited by many local and foreign travelers.
There are three main sectors within the park that are ideal for visiting:
- San Gerardo de Rivas Sector (Most Popular – Local tour guide NOT requiered)
- San Jeronimo Sector (Local tour guide REQUIERED)
- Herradura Sector (Local tour guide REQUIERED)
If you plan to make a reservation well in advance, we recommend opting for the hike through the San Gerardo Sector.
It offers a more cost-effective option compared to the other sectors.
If you need assistance with the reservation process or want to learn more about hiking in this particular sector, we’ve created a step-by-step guide on YouTube to assist you. If you’d like us to help you directly with your reservations, please email us at [email protected]
Now if you are considering visiting Cerro Chirripo National Park and expect to stay at the base camp for a least one night.
Here is where the reservations process comes across, so we will share with you the steps that you need to follow.
Note: The all reservation process is component by two different entities that need to be contacted:
SINAC: This is an institution from the government and the permits are bought through them. They manage the offline/online permits for the national parks in Costa Rica.
CRC Chirripó: This is a local organization created by neighbors from San Gerardo de Rivas and surrounding communities. They managed things like lodging at Crestones Base Camp, food, supplies and horses haul gear up the mountain.
We (Ligia and Rodrigo) do NOT work directly with SINAC or CRC Chirripó. Because of this, we CANNOT assist with last-minute reservations.
However, if you need assistance with the entire reservation process for this park and plan in advance, we can help. Please email us at [email protected].
1. Book your Cerro Chirripó Permit Online
SINAC changed the methodology for booking the permit. So, please be aware of this:
- Go to the website: Visit https://serviciosenlinea.sinac.go.cr.
- Create an account: Sign up for an account on the website.
- Sign in: Once you have an account, log in to your account.
- Make a reservation: Navigate to the “Buy” section, then select “Online Reservation” followed by “Parque Nacional Chirripo” and “Make a Reservation.”
- Select your preferred sector: Choose the sector you wish to visit and select your desired entry and departure dates.
- Choose the number of people: Indicate the number of people you are booking for (up to 4 people per reservation).
- Accept the terms: Make sure to review the terms and conditions, then accept them.
- Proceed to payment: Continue to the next step to complete your payment.
- Complete your purchase: You will have approximately 12 minutes to finalize your purchase. Ensure you provide the required information and complete the payment within this timeframe.
After booking your Cerro Chirripó permits, you will receive an email from SINAC ([email protected]) containing your confirmation number and all the relevant information.
2. Paying for lodging, food, and supplies
After you pay the permits with SINAC.
You will be getting an email like this, from CRC Chirripó.
In the email, you will receive detailed information about the expenses for lodging and instructions regarding food arrangements.
For residents, it is important to note that payment for lodging must be made within the next 5 days. Failure to do so will result in the cancellation of the reservation by CRC Chirripo and SINAC.
Foreign visitors, on the other hand, will be given a deadline for payment upon their registration at the national park.
On that day, you will have the opportunity to pay for lodging, food or any additional supplies/services you may require, such as a baggage carrier.
Cancellations and Policies
- SINAC says: If for any reason you cannot attend, the user or users, will not have the right to change members on the reservation and will be entitled to a refund of the amount paid, as long as they manage at least 15 days in advance, a situation that can change according to the Decree of entrance fees to enter protected areas that are valid.
- CRC Chirripó says: We only process cancellations of reservations that have already been canceled by SINAC, for this it is necessary that they send us the official note, where they are told that it has been processed. a) If you request cancellation of reservation (as) between 90 or more and 60 days before the date of entry; We will reimburse you 80% of the amount deposited for accommodation and / or food. b) If you request cancellation of reservation (as) between 59 and 30 days before the date of entry, we will reimburse you 60% of the amount deposited for accommodation and / or food. c) f you request cancellation of reservation (as) between 29 and 15 days before your date of entry; We will reimburse you 30% of the amount deposited for accommodation and food. d) If you request cancellation of reservation (as) 14 days or less in advance, we will not be able to make the refund.
- Tourists entering by San Gerardo Sector, must register their entrance personally without exception in the Administration of the Chirripó National Park, located in San Gerardo de Rivas de Pérez Zeledón before entering.
- For those wishing to enter at dawn or in the early hours of the morning of the day of entry, you must register the day before from eight in the morning until four in the afternoon.
- Tourists must only enter the park by the sector authorized in the reservation process and on the specified date.
- The Administration of the Chirripó national Park will establish control devices which they consider appropriate to ensure the access to the protected area once the corresponding rights of admission have been canceled.
Main contacts at SINAC and CRC Chirripó
506: is the country code of Costa Rica*
CRC Chirripó phone: (506) 2742-5200.
Email: [email protected]
CRC Chirripó: https://www.chirripo.org/
SINAC’s website: https://serviciosenlinea.sinac.go.cr/
The schedule to the public at the administrative offices of the Chirripó National Park, will be from Monday to Sunday, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 m.d. and from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
By following these steps for doing your reservation successfully plus the tips in our post about Hiking Cerro Chirripo, anyone will be able to do this great trip.
Do you need help?
We love to answer the questions from our readers through their comments and emails.
However, our time is limited and normally, we can not get into detail as much as we would like to.
For the reasons mentioned above, we can assist you with your reservation process. Please email us at [email protected].
Our service fee is $50 US if you need assistance solely with reservations for Cerro Chirripo National Park.
With this service, we can assist you with your Cerro Chirripo reservation. Additionally, if you need help planning the rest of your trip around Costa Rica, we are here to help.
Note: Don’t forget to check your Spam email after 24 hours since we normally respond during this time