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Cusuco National Park

Cusuco National Park is a national park in the Merendon mountains of the Honduran Highlands. The park is open to visitors, but it is not well developed for tourism. There are designated campgrounds, and some hiking trails that allow visitors to the falls and towers for bird and wildlife viewing. It covers an area of 234 km2 (90 sq mi).

Understand

The park ranges from just above sea level in the west to 2,425 metres (7,956 ft) in the middle. Cusuco includes several major habitats: semi-arid pine forest, moist pine forest, moist broadleaf forest and dwarf forest (bosque enano) at elevations above 2,000 metres (6,600 ft).

Landscape

The forest cover is a mixture of primary and secondary forest. The lower parts of the mountains are covered by pine forests and tropical forest. At about 1500 m of elevation, the cloud forest begins. Cloud forests are reservoirs of water.

Flora and fauna

The national park is home to a wide variety of species including toucans, monkeys, tapirs, cougars, quetzals and a large number of insect and beetle species. The giant ferns (helechos), over 20 m tall, are the main attraction of the park.

The park is part of the Meso-American biodiversity hotspot which is characterised by exceptional species richness. The park is home to globally threatened species including amphibians, Baird's tapir, montane forest specialist birds, and jewel scarab beetles.

Climate

The lower elevations in the park have a tropical monsoon climate. The higher elevations have a temperate climate with no dry season and warm summers.

Get in

The park is about 30 km from San Pedro Sula. Ask about tours at travels agents Iin the city.

  • Operation Wallacea, ☏ +44 1790 763194. This UK-based charity operates biodiversity research expeditions, biodiversity and climate change field training courses and wildlife and culture experiences in the park. (updated Dec 2022)

Fees and permits

Get around

See

Do

  • hiking
  • mountain biking
  • rappelling
  • camping
  • bird watching
  • waterfall swimming
  • caving
  • night tours

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