The territory of the Biosphere Reserve is located in the Coquimbo Region, in the north of Chile. The region is undoubtedly one of the most biodiverse in the country, with 3,429 species of plants (not counting varieties) of which 1,605 (46.8%) are entirely endemic to this area. This Biosphere Reserve represents the dwarf coastal cloud shrubland habitat, harbouring succulents and thorny shrubs comprised in the arid and semi-arid Mediterranean type plant formation of Mediterranean Chile.
Designation date: 1977
Regional network: Red de Comités y Reservas de Biosfera de Iberoamérica y el Caribe (IberoMAB)
Surface : 134.311 ha
- Core area(s): 9,959 ha
- Buffer zone(s): 25,682 ha
- Transition zone(s): 98,670 ha
Tel.: +56 934 26917
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This Biosphere Reserve represents the dwarf coastal cloud shrubland habitat, harbouring succulents and thorny shrubs comprised in the arid and semi-arid Mediterranean type plant formation of Mediterranean Chile. Biomes such as river, estuary (the mouth of the Limari River), coastline, semi-arid sclerophyll shrubland and evergreen relict forest are represented in this BR.
The evergreen relict forest comprisesa hygrophyll forest with plant species characteristic of the south of Chile, over 1,000 km away, such as the Olivillo (Aextoxicon punctatum) and Winter’s bark or Canelo (Drimys winteri).
There are 440 species of native flora, of which 266 are endemic to Chile, 10 are listed as endangered and 84 as vulnerable species.
The main activity is tourism, with close on 15,000 visitors per year. Since the establishment of the Biosphere Reserve, a series of changes have been experienced, very profound in certain segments of the tourist demand, which can be synthesized in a greater demand for environmental quality, the choice of new destinations far from traditional tourist circuits and individualized experiences, where ecotourism becomes more relevant and places the Protected Areas as a central element for their development. Initiatives related to envolving the local communities in the tourism sector have been implemented.
Research activities and environmental education also take place in the Biosphere Reserve.
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Last updated: June 2020