Directly above the town lies the dark-green swathe of the Parque Nacional Capiro y Calentura. The reserve’s huge cedars and pines tower amid a thick canopy of ferns, flowering plants and vines. As a result of the devastation wrought by Hurricane Fifi in 1974, much of the cover is secondary growth, but it still provides a secure habitat for howler monkeys, reptiles and colourful birdlife and butterflies. You can walk into the reserve by following the dirt road past the Villas Brinkley – it winds, increasingly steeply, up the slope of Cerro Calentura to the radio towers just below its summit; a 10km walk, this is best done in the relative cool of early morning. Alternatively, you could negotiate with a taxi driver to take you to the top and then walk down. Unfortunately there aren’t any trail maps, so you’ll have to do a bit of exploring.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Weekly newsletter

Sign up now for travel inspiration, discounts and competitions

Sign up now and get 20% off any ebook