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Travel Guide to Arenal Volcano, Costa Rica

Map of the Area

  • 9,757.53 km2 (3,767.40 sq mi)
  • average of 80.2°F (26.8°C)
  • UTC (GMT) -6 hrs
  • The Costa Rica Colon (CRC) ₡575.75 = $1 USD.
  • Spanish
  • Ajuela Province (2011) 885,571
  • 10°27′48″N 84°42′12″W

General Information About Arenal Volcano, Costa Rica

Ecotourism: Natural wonders and adventures abound

With its several protected areas, lakes, lagoons, volcanoes, rivers and waterfalls, the North of Costa Rica including famous the Arenal Volcano is undergoing a boom in tourism service and adventure site development, so that nature-loving visitors can enjoy the region’s many riches. Thanks to frequent rains, the Northern Zone features wet and evergreen forests as well as fertile plains—natural environments that serve as sanctuaries for water birds, reptiles, mammals and the prehistoric Gaspar fish, and important sites of interest for wildlife-lovers. Adventure activities and nature-watching may be enjoyed on the region’s rivers—Peñas Blancas, San Carlos, Toro, Puerto Viejo and Sarapiquí—some of which are important navigational routes. Forming part of the region is also the Sarapiquí canton, which, with its rich biodiversity, is recognized as a scientific research site and the last stronghold of endangered species such as the great green macaw. The region is also famous for the turnos (outdoor parties or festivals) held in its towns, with bull riding and livestock auctions.

Arenal Volcano Costa Rica Main Attractions - Tropical Discovery

Main attractions in Arenal Volcano Region

Not only is Costa Rica a country filled with beautiful beaches on both coasts, it also offers the interested visitor a large variety of other attractions as well as cultural and adventure activities. Please find below a selection of points of interests for this particular region.

Arenal Volcano Costa Rica Main Attractions - Tropical Discovery


Located seven kilometers from Fortuna, Volcán Arenal has an area of 33 square kilometers. The volcano has experienced constant activity since July 29, 1968. Its landscape has two faces: one covered with lush vegetation sheltering a variety of wildlife, and the other rugged with lava tracts and sand from the constant eruptions. Considered the region's main attraction, Arenal offers daytime and nighttime viewing opportunities, thanks to its constant explosions and eruptions.

Ecotourism, Wildlife, Forests, Biological Stations, National Parks

The National Park Juan Castro Blanco is one of the most important of Arenal Volcano Area. It is Located east of Ciudad Quesada, this park is surrounded by the Aguas Zarcas, Venecia, Zapote, Laguna, Tapezco, Altamira, Sarchí Norte, Toro Amarillo and Río Cuarto districts. The area features thermal pools (Fila Chocosuela), active volcanic vents (Volcán Platanar), inactive volcanic vents (Cerro Viejo, Cerro Pelón), volcanic cones and rugged topography. Wildlife is varied, and includes species such as quetzals, wild turkeys, chachalacas, black guans, monkeys, armadillos, agoutis and tapirs. The source of around 50 rivers, the park is home to Pozo Verde Lake and some of Costa Rica's biggest waterfalls: Toro, Aguas Gatas, Gorrión and Río Claro.

Arenal Volcano Costa Rica - Main Attractions - Tropical Discovery

Tours in the Arenal Region, Costa Rica

Caño Negro, La Fortuna, Celeste River

With its imposing volcano, rivers, lakes, forests and an amazing fauna and flora, all in the same area, it is no surprise that from the Arenal region there are unforgettable adventure, sporting, nature and cultural oriented activities to be had.

The Arenal Volcano region with its several protected areas, lakes, lagoons, volcanoes, rivers and waterfalls, is a paradise for nature-loving visitors who can enjoy the region’s many attractions. Thanks to frequent rains, the Northern Zone features wet and evergreen forests as well as fertile plains — natural environments that serve as sanctuaries for water birds, reptiles, mammals and the prehistoric Gaspar fish, and important sites of interest for wildlife-lovers. Tropical Discovery is offering you a variety of tours for all interests to discover the entire splendor of the Arenal Volcano and its surrounding:

Culture and Nature

  • This is the best ecological site in Costa Rica and the habitat or more than 350 varieties of birds, as well as the emerald basilisk, iguanas, river turtles, caimans, and many other animals. Enjoy a trip along the wetlands within a comfortable and secure boat, with our local experienced guides who have wide knowledge of the area. After that, have a delicious lunch at the Jabiru Restaurant.
  • This tour offers the perfect combination of beautiful sightseeing and physical activity. We begin with an easy and scenic horseback ride from La Fortuna village to the entrance of the La Fortuna waterfall. After viewing the magnificent 120-feet waterfall from a distance, we descend on a challenging hike through the dense rainforest where you will see amazing specimens of flora. The hike will bring us to the crystal blue pool the waterfall pours into where you will be able to take a wonderful refreshing swim.
  • Our Arenal Volcano hike through the rainforest is one of the best ways to experience the mighty "Mountain of Fire". Hike through the diverse flora and fauna to the famous lava wall where you will walk on lava rocks from ancient times and observe lava boulders tumbling down the flanks of Arenal. You could get the chance to see the glowing cinders from the crater and hear the booms from gas eruptions as your professional guide educates you on the activity and history of the marvelous volcano.
  • For the first activity of the day our guests have a choice between two activities: the Arenal Hanging Bridges and the Safari Float. The Arenal Hanging Bridges are located in a 250 hectare (618 acre) reserve of primary forest. Visitors will walk through 15 bridges from 5 to 100 meters long, along a 3 km rain forest circuit of trails built with paving blocks to prevent them from slipping. The tour is guided by a naturalist, who will open the doors of a fascinating and colorful Tropical Rain Forest world. The imposing views of the Volcano from the hanging bridges over the forest make a perfect combination for an unforgettable experience. The Safari Float on the other hand lets you enjoy the sights and sounds of the rainforest and experience its peacefulness as you quietly paddle the Penas Blancas river. Monkeys, sloths, iguanas, crocodiles and numerous tropical birds await us.   Then our tour will continue by car to the La Fortuna Waterfall. The waterfall is about 70 m high, and there is just a 600 m walk to get there. After that, lunch is served in La Fortuna. At around 3 pm we will continue on to the Arenal National Park, where the guide will tell you more about the natural and geological history of the area.Last, a relaxing bath at the Hot Springs, and a delicious dinner await you.
  • Along the river we'll find hot springs, bends of heavenly tranquility and a waterfall of singular beauty. All surrounded by varied flora and fauna. After breakfast in route to Rio Celeste, the tour arrives at the Tenorio Volcano National Park, where our 7 km hike begins (approx. 4 hrs) through the tropical rain forest. We will arrive to "Los Tenideros" of the Rio Celeste, the site where two streams of crystalline water come together and form the heavenly color blue that gives the river its name. We will continue our hike through the jungle to seek out the volcano's furnace vents that expel gases of extreme high temperatures.
  •    * Please note: Information on this page is believed to be correct but not guaranteed * Inquire for recent prices and schedule

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Hotel Campo Verde Arenal Volcano Costa Rica

The Campo Verde is a new hotel located just in front of the Arenal Volcano, 10 minutes North West from La Fortuna.

avg/night$75.00 SELECT

Mountain Paradise Hotel Arenal Volcano Costa Rica

Mountain Paradise Hotel invites you to enjoy a paradise that offers a perfect balance between nature, service, simplicity and contemporary design.

avg/night$112.00 SELECT

Lost Iguana Resort & Spa Arenal Volcano Costa Rica

The Lost Iguana Resort & Spa was created to give guests a private room surrounded by the beauty of the jungle and a perfect view of an active volcano.

avg/night$245.00 SELECT

Arenal Kioro Suites & Spa Hotel Arenal Volcano Costa Rica

The Arenal Kioro Suites & Spa hotel is located 10 kilometers Northwest from la Fortuna, in front of the majestic Arenal Volcano.

avg/night$260.00 SELECT
Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort

Tabacón Grand Spa Thermal Resort Arenal Volcano Costa Rica

Near the base of the active Arenal Volcano in the north of Costa Rica, the world renowned 5-star Tabacón Resort provides you a relaxing and unparalleled experience with its natural hot spring and thermo mineral water pools, its tropical and exuberant surroundings and its famous Iskandria Spa.

avg/night$305.00 SELECT

The Springs Resort & Spa Arenal Volcano Costa Rica

With a spectacular view of the Arenal Volcano, The Springs Resort and Spa at Arenal promises to overwhelm you in every aspect of quality, service and design.

avg/night$445.00 SELECT

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