The island was the place where a former prison was located from 1873 to 1991.
- San Lucas Island National Park photo -

Published on Wednesday, July 14, 2021

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

On Tuesday, the government announced the bid to hire the company in charge of designing the visitors center in the San Lucas Island National Park.

The island is located in the Gulf of Nicoya on the Pacific Coast. It was the place where a former prison was located from 1873 to 1991. The island and the waters that surround it contain a wide variety of wildlife.

On August 10, 2020, San Lucas Island was designated as the 30th National Park of Costa Rica. A video showing the natural beauties of the island was released by the National System of Conservation Areas and can be seen on AM Costa Rica's YouTube channel.

"We are motivated to advance in the San Lucas Island reactivation route, which is backed with inter-institutional cooperation," Claudia Dobles, the first lady said. She is also a supporter of the plan to increase tourism to the island. "San Lucas continues its development towards an environmentally responsible tourism model, which will boost the economy in the province of Puntarenas."

According to the government, architects incorporated into the College of Engineers and Architects of Costa Rica can participate in this bid. The offers to design the visitor center must meet characteristics such as innovation, creativity and must be environment-friendly.

People interested in competing for this deal have until Aug. 23 to submit their offers. The information must be requested by email to the College of Engineers,

The winning project will be announced on Nov. 4 and will also receive an extra prize sponsored by the Central American Bank for Economic Integration, CABEI.

According to the bank, the goal of this award is to promote the quality participation of professionals in architectural design and to support the development of extensive restoration projects on the island, both in the tourism and infrastructure fields.

As part of the plan to reactivate tourism to the island, several restorations have been made to the old prison buildings, the construction of a new park ranger house and better trails, among others.

Since August 2020, when the San Lucas Island reopened, a total of 920 visits have been reported, the government said in its statement.

In June, representatives of the United States National Park System and the Ministry of the Environment signed an agreement to twin the U.S. Golden Gate National Park and the San Lucas Island.

Have you been to San Lucas Island? We would like to know your thoughts on this story. Send your comments to


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