Established in 1956, the Armando Bermúdez National Park stretches 767 square kilometers (296 square miles), and together with the neighboring José del Carmen Ramírez National Park, boasts the tallest peaks in the Caribbean region, including the mighty Pico Duarte, source of the Yaque del Norte river, as well as several more river sources. The two parks cover the surface of the entire Cordillera Central mountain range. You’ll spot unique flora at this altitude, where temperatures range from 12ºC (53ºF) to -8ºC (17ºF) at night, including endemic criollo pine trees, ferns, and mahogany, among others. Amid these precious trees are numerous bird species such as the cigua palmera or palmchat–the DR’s national bird–the Hispaniolan parrot, butterflies, and frogs. You might even spot the hutia–an endangered large rat species. One of the most popular hiking routes to Pico Duarte depart from this national park’s main office, where you can hire the required certified guides, as well as mules for the two- or three-day overnight journey.