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Aguacaliente Wildlife Sanctuary

Getting Here & Around | Activities

Location: Near Laguna Village, Toledo District

The Aguacaliente Wildlife Sanctuary (AWS), was declared a sanctuary in 1998, covering 5,492 acres of land and water. It is situated amidst rolling hills on the east end, steep karst hills on the south and central wetland areas, which consist of three fresh water lagoons, two hot springs and several streams boding in and out of the lagoons. The lagoons and forested areas are homes to a wide variety of birds, mammals, orchids, butterflies and insects.

The area reaches from the Rio Grande River in the east to the Moho River in the south. The villages of Dump, Laguna and Blue Creek border the AWS and are known for their traditional methods in farming, community development, governance, and celebrations. Being a small community, the people are very friendly and helpful to each other and visitors.

Getting to the Sanctuary

By Bus
There is a bus that travels to Laguna, on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. It departs from Laguna at 6:00am and returns at 12:00pm from Punta Gorda.

By Private Vehicle
Go west of Punta Gorda for about 10 miles. Take a left onto the dirt road towards Laguna. The turn is before the Machaca Forest Station. Take this road 3 miles into Laguna. The trail is on your right from the village. You can ask any local as to its location.

Accommodations and Services
There are three stores that serve snacks and cold drinks. If lodging at the TEA guest house local meals are provided.

Activities at Agua Caliente Wildlife Sanctuary

Caving: There are several caves that lie in the hills behind Laguna Village. They can be reached by hiring a guide from the village.

Hiking: Trails can be taken into the sanctuary and are accessible only during the dry season. Trails into the hills are available all times of the year and a 45 minute hike up the hill gives a view of the sea to the east and the lagoons in the sanctuary to the west.

Fishing: Line fishing is allowed in the sanctuary. There are abundant fish in the sanctuary which contributes to the diverse bird life that is present.

Bird watching: There are an abundant number of bird species within the sanctuary year round. There are wood storks, jabirus, as well as many migratory species mainly present from December to February.

Cultural Activities: Ten local communities work for the protection of the Aguacaliente Wildlife Sanctuary. Each one offers an assortment of cultural activities. The villages are Laguna, Jordan, Blue Creek, Dump, Big Falls, Yemery Grove, San Marcos, Silver Creek, Mafredi, and San Antonio. Presently the only entrance open to the Sanctuary is in Laguna.

Volunteer Activities: The Aguacaliente Management Team has opportunities for environmental and community volunteers. The local schools also are always in need of volunteers.

Community Based Tourism:  Aguacaliente Wildlife Sanctuary | Bladen Forest Reserve | Rio Blanco National Park

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