La Fortuna Waterfall, La Fortuna de San Carlos

4.5
#1 of 119 in Nature in Costa Rica
A short drive from town, La Fortuna Waterfall offers an idyllic place for swimming, picnicking, and relaxing. Fed by the Arenal River, which winds its way through the rainforest before plunging dramatically over a steep cliff, this waterfall forms a large pool at the base of a dormant volcano. Lifeguards remain on duty throughout the day, while modern facilities like restrooms and showers ensure a comfortable visit in a lush area noted for thick vegetation and abundant wildlife. Prepare for a short but arduous hike to the base of the waterfall by wearing shoes suitable for slippery and uneven terrain. Use our La Fortuna de San Carlos attractions planner to add La Fortuna Waterfall and other attractions to your La Fortuna de San Carlos vacation plans.
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La Fortuna Waterfall Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
7,626 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • Beautiful waterfall with exceptional water. Unfortunately very rocky and sharp rocks at that! Be careful, several people got cut walking down slippery wet rocks. You have to hike up several floors of ...  more »
  • We did the waterfall hike as part of a day trip that included the hanging bridges and Arsenal volcano hike. We ended with a descent down the 500 steps and swam beneath the roar of the waterfall.  more »
  • Had a great day. Very touristy but fun. Easy walk down and not too bad getting back up, though our whole family is very physical  more »
Google
  • It's a great place to visit. I like this waterfall specifically because you can swim here. It's beautiful too, super tall and has great photo opportunities. There's more than 500 steps (each way) but there's spots along the way to take a rest. Kid friendly, I brought my 3 year old and she did fine the whole time, though down at the base its kind of rocky, so you'd want to keep an eye on them the whole time. But yeah again, would definitely recommend checking out this waterfall, it's worth it.
  • Such a beautiful a beautiful place. The waterfalls are stunning and worth all the stairs. The swimming area has a very nice, covered bench to leave your belongings while you swim. The changing rooms/showers and the bathrooms are well kept and very clean. The orchid and butterfly walks are nice little extras to explore once you've been to the waterfall. We saw a ton of butterflies while it rained!! Everything was well worth the entrance fee!!
  • A beautiful waterfall very close to La Fortuna. Often offered as "tour" by travel agencies, but you can easily discover it on your own - especially if you have a car (~5km from town). The admission is $15, there is a free parking. There are lockers and even showers at the entrance which is extremely convenient. Keep in mind that there are 500 stairs to take to get t waterfall, going back is a bit of exercise. You can also swim at the waterfall which is a great experience on own.
  • Breath taking! From the sound of the waterfall to the animals and just everything around it. Just a gorgeous place. There's about 500 steps to go down. Quite a work out but totally worth it. The water is extremely cold but just so inviting. This is a must! (PS. All photos taken from a Google Pixel 2XL)
  • Trail to the waterfall is well done. It is not a typical dirt trail but instead stairs that follow the steep slope. Great viewing stops along the way and the platforms at the bottom allow for good views of the waterfall. There is a swimming area to the left of the waterfall. Cost is $15 per person. Price is pretty high but if you don’t mind that you can get some wonderful photos of a waterfall.
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13 days in Costa Rica BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES February, popular sights PREFERENCES: February ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 6 days in Costa Rica BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES January, teens, kids, outdoors, beaches, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: January, teens, kids, outdoors, beaches, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 5 days in Costa Rica BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES November, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: November, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 7 days in Costa Rica BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES March, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: March, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 5 days in Costa Rica BY A USER FROM CROATIA February, popular sights PREFERENCES: February ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 8 days in Costa Rica BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES February, popular sights PREFERENCES: February ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 11 days in Costa Rica BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES March, kids, outdoors, beaches, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: March, kids, outdoors, beaches, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 31 days in Central America BY A USER FROM CANADA November, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: November, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 23 days in Central America BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM December, popular sights PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 18 days in Nicaragua & Costa Rica BY A USER FROM ISRAEL January, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, shopping, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: January, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 60 days in Central America, South America & Caribbean BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM August, popular sights PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 8 days in Costa Rica BY A USER FROM PUERTO RICO October, popular sights PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium
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