Parque Nacional Volcan Arenal, La Fortuna de San Carlos
(4.1/5 based on 300+ reviews on the web)
Take a hike through the lush flora surrounding an imposing peak at Parque Nacional Volcan Arenal. The trails take you through dense forest, past giant trees, and across lava fields, all the while Arenal, Costa Rica’s most active volcano, smolders above. You cannot go beyond a certain point, due to the liveliness of the volcano, but the surrounding trails are mostly flat and suitable for adults and children alike. Make sure to wear sturdy boots to traverse the rugged ground over the lava flows, and remember to bring a camera to capture memories of the area's colorful wildlife. Put Parque Nacional Volcan Arenal on your schedule, and learn what else deserves a visit by using our La Fortuna de San Carlos trip builder.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • We went here with Ecoterra, the guide was good, but I did not feel there was that much to see. It was cloudy when we went and were not able to see the volcano. It was less animals and other creatures ...  more »
  • To access the Park, located at the foot of the Arenal Volcano, we must pay a $ 15 entry and give access to parking. Before starting to walk, especially if the morning is clear, it is advisable to climb with the car to the viewpoint to have a good panoramic view of the volcano. Then there is that again to get off and leave the car in the "parking". From there there are 3 possible paths, with a total distance of 5-6 kilometers by all. I recommend to start with the path of the lava flows, 2km, which reaches flows of lava of the great eruption of 1992. Not climb much, but you can see the path of the lava, and how vegetation step has opened and it has been covering everything in a short time. The return can be along the path of el Ceibo, circular, in the midst of which can be seen a huge 500 years old ceibo tree. It is very nice, it impresses for its size. Although the walks do not constitute any difficulty, it is preferable to make them slowly looking at sounds and trying to discern animals, since there are several but don't let see easy. We heard some howling monkeys (Congo), and the sound is shocking. At the end of both paths, ending at the same point, you can do the Heliconias trail, of just 700 metres away, although we didn't too and does not have much appeal.
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  • While we did have bad luck with the weather, we still had a nice hike through the park. You can easily walk it without a guide. You'll probably see other tourists more often than animals. Still absolu...  more »
Google
  • Wonderful. The volcano was active while we were there. Attempts to climb the volcano were cut short with an eruption. Gas is an issue when active as is true for all volcanic activity. Don't climb this mountain if active. You could die. In fact, some have. Nice hot springs in the area. Some can be located away from commercial areas if you are willing to explore.
  • Well worth the visit! Enjoy the local wildlife and hot springs. A memorable experience.
  • We hiked the volcano Cerro Chato, is the shorter and inactive volcano right next to the arenal, entrance is about 20$, expensive as everything in Costa Rica; the hike was great; the path is very well visible, be aware, it is quite physically challenging! Apart from the very beginning, the whole way is very muddy and it can get quite steep! More that once we all had to use our hands to literally climb up ! The whole hike (up and down) takes about 2 and a half hour (we didn't go fast at all) all the efforts are definitely payed back by beautiful views, nature and a very suggestive volcanic lake where you can swim into.
  • Very beautiful place. The forest here is mostly new growth but it allows for some great views of Arsenal Volcano and Lake Arenal. Definitely worth a visit on a clear day.
  • We walked to the 1992 lava flow and really enjoyed it. The guide explained the history and we got rant lucky with some nice views of the Arenal peak. Interesting to see the forest try to take hold again after such destruction