Olof Wessberg (known as Nicolas) and Karen Mogensen arrived in Costa Rica in the 1960s in the pursuit of finding happiness in harmony with nature. They chose to establish themselves in the Nicoya Peninsula. Soon after establishing near Montezuma, they set out on an expedition to the Cabo Blanco area in search of native tree seeds to reforest their newly acquired farm. Upon arriving in the area, they were amazed at the abundant wildlife and the size of the trees in the area. This was like an oasis in the midst of a desert as all lands around had been devastated to give way to low-yield pasture and agricultural lands.
This experience was what triggered their determination to save and preserve this “natural jewel.” With the aid of an international agency, they bought 1250 hectares of land in 1963 and turned these lands into the first protected area in all of Costa Rica.
Nicolas died in 1975 and Karen in 1994. Their bodies are buried at the Nicolas Wessberg Natural Reserve which was the original farm they bought when they first arrived in the Montezuma area.
The Nicolas Wessberg Absolute Natural Reserve contains a moist tropical secondary forest, with approximately 150 identified trees, where evergreen species predominate, but dry forest species are found as well.
It serves as a habitat for many animals, such as white-faced and howler monkeys, white-tailed deer, pacas, armadillos, anteaters, collared peccaries, coyotes, porcupines, raccoons, coatis, ocelots, jaguarundis or margay cats.