Arenal Volcano National Park
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Arenal Volcano National Park is a popular Costa Rican tourist destination known for its active volcano and diverse flora and fauna. It offers visitors a variety of activities, including hiking, soaking in the hot springs, and observing wildlife. The park's spectacular backdrop is Arenal Volcano, one of the most active volcanoes in the world. Arenal National Park is also home to a variety of wildlife. Monkeys, sloths, and many bird species can be seen. From swimming in the hot springs to taking a zip line ride through the rainforest, the park has something for everyone.

Good to Know:

  • Getting There: Fly into Costa Rica's capital, San José, and either drive or take a bus to La Fortuna. The bus ride takes approximately four hours.
  • Getting Around: Renting a car in La Fortuna is the most flexible option, as most sights are about a fifteen-minute drive from town. If you plan to mainly do day hikes, then taking a taxi from La Fortuna to the trailheads also works.
  • Where to Stay: Stay in La Fortuna, where there are plenty of accommodations for all budgets. There are other, often more unique, accommodations within the park, but be aware that these are much more remote.
  • When to Visit: There are two main seasons in Arenal Volcano National Park - the rainy season (May to November) and the dry season (December to April). Most visit during the dry season to avoid the rain, but the rainy season (also known as the green season!) is when nature is at its lushest and most beautiful.
  • How Long to Visit: If you combine your trip with the surrounding parks, about four to five days will suffice.
  • More: Check out our Visit Costa Rica and Backpacking in Guatemala trips for similar adventures!



The park offers several hikes, including the Lava Trail, which traverses a landscape shaped by past volcanic activity, and the Místico Arenal Hanging Bridges, with stunning views of the surrounding rainforest. For the adventurous, the park offers zip lining, rappelling, and horseback riding for a complete immersion in the region's natural beauty.

Hot Springs:

Arenal is also famous for its hot springs, which provide a natural way to relax and unwind after hiking. The springs offer different options, such as swimming pools with different temperatures, some with waterfalls, and others surrounded by nature.

La Fortuna Waterfall:

La Fortuna waterfall is a must-see attraction within the park, with its crystal-clear water cascading down from a height of over 70 m (230 ft), surrounded by lush vegetation and offering a refreshing swimming spot for visitors.