Also known as the Old Metropolis, Cartago was the capital of Costa Rica until 1823, time when such title was transferred to the city of San José.
Is a relatively small province, with just 3.124 km2 and almost 35 000 residents.
This is Costa Rica's colonial art most important region. Perhaps, the best example is the temple of Orosí, constructed on 1743; a historic jewel that has witnesses the birth of a nation.
Cartago possesses a humid tropical climate, its mountainous system embrace two mountain ranges, the Central, where the Irazú and Turrialba volcanoes are situated, and Talamanca's Mountain Range, which is the other great mountainous formation of the province. Among these mountains it raises the imposing Chirripó, the highest point of Costa Rica, situated at 3.600 meters above sea level, Cartago is o land of tradition and religiousness.
Towards the north of the province, located on the outskirts of the cita of Turrialba, the visitor will find Guayabo's National Monument. On this mystic place, the visitors will admire enigmatic constructions dating the pre-Columbian epoch. It is one of the largest archaeological areas than has been discovered in the country.
Mounds, bridges, plazas and paved roods, as well as an aqueduct that still works, are some of the traces of the old cultures. The pilgrimage to the Basílica de los Angeles -in Cartago's downtown- is the most important religious activity of Costa Rica. Each year, on August 2nd, the Virgin Mary is celebrated and millions of persons respond her from all over the country.
Perhaps, Cartago's main attraction is the Irazú volcano; a magnificent giant still active, whose five craters attracts thousands of tourists annually.
Irazú is the highest volcano in the country, with 3.432 meters above sea level. It is the born site of various rivers that supply the basins of the Chirripó, Reventazón, Sarapiquí and Grande de Tárcoles rivers.