Study Guide

Jurassic Park Setting


Jurassic Park, Isla Nublar, 120 Miles West of Costa Rica, 1993

A Place Right Out of History

Isla Nublar and Jurassic Park (the park itself) are just as important as the humans and dinosaurs in the movie. Isla Nublar is probably the worst place possible to have a theme park. Sure it's tropical, which offers the perfect climate for prehistoric plants and animals to come back to life, but a storm forces everyone to evacuate, leaving those who don't isolated and in danger. You've heard the phrase tropical storm, so you know they happen a lot in tropical climates like this one.

But the big attraction—literally—is Jurassic Park itself. Jurassic Park is filmed as if you're going to the park yourself. The huge gates open up and the automated voice in the jeep says "Welcome to Jurassic Park." Hooray. Pretty much everything has the Jurassic Park logo on it, from the jeeps themselves to the walls of merchandise inside the visitor's center. It's corporate sponsorship at its best.

Aside from all the merch, Jurassic Park is "kind of a biological preserve" according to Hammond. He's right. It's like a safari, except instead of lions and tigers you see Triceratops and T. rexes. Do not attempt to feed the dinos.

The state of the park reflects the state of events inside the park itself. As the situation gets more and more dire, the park itself seems to deteriorate in front of our eyes. And boy does it happen fast—the entire timeline of Jurassic Park once everyone sets foot on the island lasts only two days.

First the perimeter fence goes down. Then the T. rex smashes right through it. When Sattler and Muldoon rescue Dr. Malcolm, there are dozens of muddy, torn Jurassic Park signs scattered on the ground. The park isn't so fun anymore, is it? Even the glorious visitor's center isn't exempt. But you'll have to head over to our "What's Up With the Ending" section to find out what happens then, when dinosaurs take over the earth.

Aside from the Island of Dr. Moreau or The Island of Blue Dolphins, Isla Nublar might be one of the most famous fictional islands in pop culture. A massive map of the island is used for the board of the Jurassic Park board game. And the island has even been recreated in Minecraft. Now those two are islands we wouldn't mind visiting. We'd at least be much more likely to make it out alive.