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Bosque de Fray Jorge National Park
Area: 100 km²
Description of Bosque de Fray Jorge National Park
Bosque de Fray Jorge National Park is a protected reserve in Limarí
Province, Coquimbo Region of Chile. It covers a total area of 100
km². Bosque de Fray Jorge National Park lies approximately 100 km
south of La Serena along the Pacific Ocean. It lies close to the
Atacama Desert, in the Cordillera de Talinay, which is part of the
Chilean Coastal Range. On the south, the protected reserve is
bordered by the Limarí River. Bosque de Fray Jorge National Park
covers an area of 100 km², but the forests cover only 4% of its
surface. Most of the area is covered by shrubs and grasses.
Protected reserve is known for having the northernmost Valdivian
temperate rain forests.
Its particular characteristic is that it is the
northernmost remnant of the Valdivian rainforest, being isolated
from the rest of the temperate forest due to the disappearance of
these products from the end of the last glacial period.
remnant was maintained thanks to a particular climatic phenomenon,
which is the condensation of the coastal fog (camanchaca) resulting
from the crossing of the Humboldt current with the winds coming from
the sea. This creates a particular humid environment that maintains
- already in a significant degree of deterioration - the
characteristics of the forest. The place has an annual rainfall that
exceeds 250 mm. even coming in rainy years to values close to 800
or 1000 mm.
This characteristic of relictual forest
determines that in it the northern extreme limits of various species
of the flora of Chile are found, such as the olivillo tree
(Aextoxicon punctatum), the epiphytic vine medallite (Sarmienta
scandens) or the copihue (Lapageria rosea), the national flower of
Chile, although the latter seems to have been introduced to the park
during the twentieth century.
In 1977 it was declared a
Biosphere Reserve by Unesco
Access roads From Santiago,
take the Pan American Highway 5 or Elqui Highway until km 387,
follow a side road to the west (Route D-540) that in 22 km to the
entrance to the Park. At km 27 you pass through some agricultural
communities that border the park, this road is dirt and is kept in
good condition throughout the year. The path where the journey to
the Valdivian forest begins, is 10 km from the entrance of the Park,
so you must take a steep and curvy dirt road, which is not in very
From Coquimbo, take Route 5 or Elqui Highway
south to km 387 and from there follow the side road to the west
(Route D-540). They are 110 km in one hour and 45 minutes. It is
located 116 km south of the city of La Serena.
From the city
of Ovalle you must take the D-501 route, 1 kilometer before Cerros
de Tamaya, which turns west to join the Route D-535 along Route 5.