Comprising a 7.3-sq-km swath of subtropical forest rising up from the lake over limestone terrain, this nature reserve offers mildly strenuous hiking and excellent wildlife-watching, with paths to some brilliant lookout points. As a bonus, there's an adjacent lakeside park with diving docks for a refreshing conclusion to the tour.
More than 20 mammal species roam the reserve, including spider and howler monkeys, white-tailed deer and even the elusive Mesoamerican tapir, though sightings are rare. Birdlife is rich and varied, with the opportunity to spot toucans, woodpeckers and the famous ocellated turkey, a big bird resembling a peacock. Trees include mahogany, cedar, ramón and cohune palm, along with many types of bromeliads, ferns and orchids.
A network of loop trails ascends the hill to three lookout points, affording views of the whole lake and of Laguna Salpetén to the east. The trail called Los Escobos (4km long, about 2¼ hours), through secondary growth forest, is good for spotting monkeys.
The admission fee includes the right to camp or sling your hammock under small thatch shelters inside the entrance. There are toilets and showers. The reserve is 1.75km west along Jobompiche Rd from El Remate.