7 Costa Rica’s Mandatory-Visited Volcanoes

For fans of volcanoes,Costa Rica is a wonderful vacation spot (that I would.) In actuality, this area is home to 66 clearly visible volcanoes, of which five are active and the remaining 61 are inactive or extinct.

Having said that, it is estimated that there are more than 200 volcanic ruins in the nation, many of which. Are still unidentified and concealed by thick jungles. Really nice, no?

upon what is referred to as the Central American Volcanic Arc, all of these volcanoes are located in the nation’s. Ggeographic centre. Between Mexico and Panama, this region has the highest concentration of volcanoes of any other place on earth.

Turrialba, Irazu, Poas, Arenal, Rincón de la Vieja, and are Costa Rica’s five most well-known and active volcanoes. Miravalles is the sixth, but tourists do not frequently travel there.

I’ll go into detail about each of Costa Rica’s seven must-see volcanoes in this blog post. I’ll explain the reasons why I go to each one,the location, the price of the tickets, and other useful. Information such as when to travel, which guided tours get great reviews.

It is your comprehensive reference to the top volcanoes in Costa Rica!

Optimal The volcanoes of Costa Rica

7 Costa Rica's Mandatory-Visited Volcanoes
Costa Rica’s Mandatory-Visited Volcanoes

1. Volcano of Poas 

A mere a half-hour and a half’s drive from San Jose’s downtown is the extremely active Poas Volcano. Its height of 2,697 metres (8,848 feet) dwarfs Parque National Volcán Poás. 39 eruptions have occurred since 1828, can you believe that?

The acidic lake called blue, actually among the greatest A globe map of craters, is what this volcano is most. Well-known for. This enormous crater, which measures a stunning 1.5 

kilometres (0.9 miles) in circumference, is certainly a sight to behold in person. This is unsurprising to be a popular tourist destination in Costa Rica.

select a day that is sunny and begin climbing early to escape cloudy skies frequently obscure late afternoon eruption of. The volcano for the best chance of seeing the crater. Here’s me. #1 advice

For climbing, the Poas Volcano had to learn it for the first time through hardship when I reached the peak. Simply to see clouds!

You will see a quick safety video and brief introduction to the volcano after reaching there. It will explain steps to take in case of an emergency. The volcano hike must be done next. Only a short distance, largely along an entrance road,

and after 15 or so minutes, the hiking track leads to the observation platform above the crater. You can spend around 20 minutes exploring the crater and gazing into the volcano once you arrive there.

Volcano National Park

Daily hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., and admission to Poas Volcano National Park costs For adults, $15 USD, and $5 USD for kids (Discounts are available to citizens..) A limited

a number of visitors are permitted into the crater during each time slot, and there is no ticket sales at the entry, thus you MUST purchase your ticket visiting the SINAC website beforehand.

In the busiest times of the year,early in the day time slots sell out weeks in advance. It should be noted that tickets for admission are frequently already included when booking a tour in person.

The best way to travel towards Poas Volcano National Park is by hiring a vehicle, especially given that San Jose is only a two-hour trip away. By doing so, you’ll have more time to see the

Crater, go on a trek, and maybe even stop by some of the historic towns near the park’s entry, such as Fraijanes and Vara Blanca.

You’re in luck if, like me, you adore strawberries because this region of Costa Rica is well known for its mouth watering strawberries. You’ll run into some roadside kiosks 

Costa Rica

offering a wide variety within these berries as you go through San Jose to the volcano. Other distinctive foods, including the renowned Palmito Cheese from the region, are also available from sellers.

The best option if you don’t have a vehicle is to sign up for a tour in person; there are many excursions that come highly recommended that leave on a day trip like this, leaving from San Jose one.

which departs the city at 8 o’clock and contains your National Park of the Poas admission fee. It’s excellent that you may avoid the frequently lengthy lineups around the volcano if you reserve this specific tour.

Consider taking this day-long excursion, which includes excursions to the volcano and Falls of La Paz, if you want to squeeze two of the best nearby sights into a single day. It takes 12 hours and leaves from San Jose.

Our major priority is safety recommendations for travelling to Costa Rica for more information.

  1. Mount Arenal 

The 1.657-meter high (5,436-foot) tall Arenal Volcano, which is located three hours’ drive from San Jose, is regarded as a volcano that was most recently active in 2010. Arenal, which had a 

a significant outbreak in 1968, was formerly thought to be Costa Rica’s most active volcano. The 10- to 11-hour journey towards Arsenal’s summit is forbidden, but lots of people still do it!

The best time to depart San Jose if you intend driving here is so you may take your time, first thing in the morning. Then, if you have the time, visit a lagoon called Arenal, a great location to unwind, or cross any off your list the La Fortuna area’s thermal springs.

La Fortuna, which is approximately fifteen minutes away from the park’s entrance, is the town that is nearest to Arenal. There are lots of sightseeing and activities to enjoy in La Fortuna, a well-liked tourist destination in Costa Rica.

There are several excellent places to view the volcano in La Fortuna town. In contrast, clouds can frequently obscure the top, particularly Later on, it becomes invisible..

as is the case with many other volcanoes on this list. If visiting Arenal is vital to you, try to travel around February. It’s best to stay away from the area from May to November, when it rains often.

A couple evenings should be spent in La Fortuna. is a It serves as the entrance to the National Park, if you want to get a decent view of the volcano

La Fortuna

(or trek up it, which I don’t advise because it’s prohibited to do so). Fortunately, La Fortuna has a tonne of excellent lodging options in addition to top-notch dining establishments.

You may explore the area around the volcano’s base as well as the park itself. Take one of the many hiking trails in the park to explore it on your own. The trails are fantastic since.

 They offer a variety of volcano perspectives to appreciate along the route. There is also a spot where you may observe the most recent large eruption’s lava spilled down its flank.

I took a guided tour to the National Park of Arenal Volcano solely because I enjoy learning about new places from experienced tour guides. Given that it covers all of your costs,

water, transportation, and a manual, this particular tour is a fantastic choice. A combo tour is something you ought to think about taking if you lack time. 

a garden of butterflies., an Indian town called Maleku, the Arenal and La Fortuna Waterfalls, and a River of free hot springs are all included in this full-day tour.

As previously mentioned, National Park of the Arenal Volcano is home to the volcano. Entry From 8 am to 4 pm, you can get to the park.for $15 USD for adults and $5 USD for children.

3. Mount Chato 

The 1,140 m (3,740 ft) tall Chato Volcano (also known as Aside from Cerro Chato, situated  within the La Fortuna neighborhood. On this list, it is the volcano with the least height.

It’s close to the Arenal Volcano and La Fortuna is only a short drive away.. It is a dormant volcano, and the last eruption is thought to have occurred more than 3.5 centuries ago.

Chato Volcano hikes are entirely legal, unlike those on Arenal. A stunning turquoise crater lake may be reached by climbing this trek, which is either moderately tough.

or challenging in relation to the weather. This lake is 500 metres wide, and swimming in it is a wonderful alternative in the summer.

In order to be at the top, linger a while. avoid The dark return hike, I recommend starting the hike around 10 am. Most people should be able to complete the hike up and down in 3 to 4 hours. I wouldn’t suggest taking this trek if it were pouring.

The ‘locals’ approach all the way up, which begins at the Green Lagoon Lodge close to the entrance to the waterfall in La Fortuna, is one of two ways to reach the summit of Chato Volcano. 

People without a car

The most significant practical alternative for people without a car, however because the path is no longer kept up with, it is not advised during the wetter months because it can become difficult 

to negotiate and have sections washed away. It costs $10 USD at Green Lagoon Lodge. for admittance, which also grants you access to the pool, showers, and parking.

Arenal Observatory Lodge is the starting point for the second ascent route. Although this is approximately a 30-minute drive in the town of La Fortuna,The route is better maintained 

s but still in no way easy) (but still in no way easy.) The hotel levies a $12 USD fee. for admission to the path; however, this cost does not include use of any amenities.

You decide how to get leading to, although I personally chose the second path. I’ve heard that that was a wise decision!

4.Volcano Irazu

The Irazu Volcano is located throughout Cartago province. With a height of 3,432 metres (11,259 feet), this volcano is the highest in Costa Rica. It lAst broke out in December of 1994.,

and it is still active today. A drive of a 20-hour period minutes will bring you there, making it a convenient day trip destination through San Jose. One of the most well-liked volcanoes to see in Costa Rica without a doubt is Irazu!

The main crater, which is enormous, as well as the Diego de la Haya crater are two of the most famous features on Irazu’s top.

The best thing regarding Irazu is that you don’t have to trek up to and including the top; instead, You can take a car to the top’s primary parking area. and take it quick and simple.

trail to get to primary crater It only takes three minutes one way, and on the route you can observe some unusual animal and plant species.

There is a green lake during the wet season

You will be in wonder when you get to the primary crater, which is an enormous 1,050 metresand in diameter more than 300 metres deep! 

down there in the crater, there is a green lake during the wet season, and during when it’s dry out, you view the remains of previous lava flows.

The lesser crater known as Diego de la Haya has a diameter of 690 metres and a distinctive bright green tint, is located alongside the trail to the right of the larger crater.

It will take you around a day and forty minutes (traffic-free) to go by public bus from downtown San Jose to the main parking lot in Irazu. Buses Metropolis runs this service.

At 8 am, the bus leaves, and it returns at 12:30 to San Jose. Since I had a rental automobile, I personally haven’t done this.

There are restrooms and a little store selling food, beverages, and some trinkets at the main parking lot. In addition, several benches for picnics nearby.

If you want a guided tour

The cost of admission $15 USD is required to enter the national park; make reservations for your tickets in advance on the website of SINAC. The store is open between 8 and 4 pm.

If you want a guided tour, the half-day volcanic excursion is a fantastic choice. It comes with snacks and travels to and from San Jose! A 3 hour visit to the volcano is included in this itinerary. 

Coming soon home,Additionally, it makes a detour to visit a Cartago church called the Basilica de Los Angeles, which is home to la “virgencita,” Saint Josemaria is Costa Rica’s national patron., whom the country’s citizens honour each August during a pilgrimage.

This 7-hour excursion is another excellent choice; it spends some time viewing the volcano and also stops in Cartago and the Basilica of the Angels.

 The cost also includes lunch and pick-up from your San Jose hotel.

5.the volcano of Rincón  de La Vieja

A notable example of popular volcanoes in Costa Rica, the Rincon de la ltima Volcano has 1,916. metres (6,286 feet) tall. One hour’s In the Guanacaste province, a trip from Liberia.

 It is situated inside the Park National de la Vieja Rincon. A second Santa Maria volcano, which is a dormant Volcano, is interestingly located within this national park. 

The last significant eruption at the Rincon de la Vieja Volcano occurred in 1998, therefore it is active. Actually, there are a couple little volcanic eruptions here every day!

Waterfalls, trekking, and the Rio Negro Hot Springs paths can all be found in the enormous (35,000 acres) Rincon de la Vieja National Park. It’s without a doubt one of Costa Rica’s

top national parks. Additionally, this location has a fantastic adventure centre with Zip lining, tubing, and riding horses!

The native tribe that gave the area its name, Recon of the Old, which directly translates from Spanish as “the old woman’s corner.

 did so because they thought a wizard at the summit of that mountain wanted it to steam and boil (much like a cauldron)!)

Although you can visit this volcano on your own, tours are very common here.

The park has various fantastic hiking trails, but I highly suggest the 20-minute hike to the Las Pailas (mud pots that are a-boiling)), a unique a quality of the region where the dirt is so sweltering that 

Little pools of bubbles

little pools of bubbles! a trail called Catarata La Gangrene, which is about three miles round trip, is another enjoyable hike and ends at a lovely waterfall. Additionally, there are hikes with a guide available, like this one.

As I previously stated, Liberia is the town that is nearest to Volcano Rincon de la Vieja and is where you should arrange a daylong journey excursion if you want to visit the volcano. 

The walking tour of the Las Pailas circle path, where applicable witness bubbling mud springs and observe the iguana and the spider monkey, is part of this 6- to 8-hour excursion,

making it a wonderful choice. You will also go to the thermae in Rio Negroand the Oropendola waterfall. The cost also includes lunch at the village of Curubande.

The travel time to other well-known tourist destinations including Tamarindo and Playa Flamingo is slightly under two hours. It takes 8:00 to 10:00 to complete this journey.

which departs from both towns. This tour focuses more on exploring  than it does on the adventurous pursuits that are available here.the national park

The cost to enter the national park of Rincon de la Vieja is $5.60 for children under 12 and $17 for adults if you don’t tour the area scheduled. It is open Tuesday through Sunday (closed on Mondays).

6. Mount Tenorio 

In Guanacaste Province, within , standsa non-ac Standing alone without air conditioning in ano National Park Active volcano in Tenorio, which rises 1,916 metres (6,286 ft) above sea level. The Rio Celeste 

a waterfall, one of Costa Rica’s best waterfalls, can be found in the country’s park, which is why it is so well-known.

Due to the park’s enormous rise in visitors since 2019, there are visitation Existing quotas, which restrict the amount of visitors who can come here each day. a maximum of 500 individuals

 can enter at once, with a maximum of 1,000 individuals can enter each day. Therefore, it’s crucial to get there early.

Although the volcano’s summit is off limits to the general public, in exceptional cases, special permission may be given to ascend to the summit.

should you ascend you would notice a leading to sizable crater with a wall, a lake, and lots of fauna (perhaps due to the low number of visits.)

To be quite honest, Rio Celeste—the volcano not—is the main attraction of Tenorio. The heavily used Back-and-forth hiking track that follows Rio Celeste inside the park is actually the main draw and among the top activities in Costa Rica.

Costa Rica’s most stunning natural landmarks

In the same way as the aforementioned Rio Celeste Waterfall, the walk goes by some of Costa Rica’s most stunning natural landmarks. the blue lagoon, a vivid blue lagoon, La Borbollona a portion 

where you may see the river view volcanic bubbles, as well as El Tenidero, intersection of those two rivers giving the area its blue color are all visible along this 5.5 km (3.5 miles) route.

 With the exception of one flight of narrow stairs leading to the waterfall observation platform, the trail is rather simple.

The travel time to the Tenorio Volcano from Liberia, La Fortuna, and San Jose is two hours and forty minutes, one hour, and twenty-five minutes, respectively.

If you don’t want to travel on your own to the park, this full-day, 8-hour journey departing from La Fortuna is a wonderful option. 

There is also a narrated trail where you may observe animals such as primates and birds. The cost includes a picnic lunch.

Personally, I went alone and had a great time. We departed La Fortuna at 7 am in order to enter the gates as soon as they did so and experience the waterfall free of crowds. I heartily endorse it!

Everyday, including holidays and weekends, the park is open from 8 am to 4 pm.). The previous entry, though, closes at 2:00 PM. You should be aware a parking space any one of the lots at the 

entrance costs 3.50 USD per vehicle if you are using a rental vehicle. Adults must pay USD $12 and kids must pay $4 USD to enter Tenorio Volcano National Park. No money is accepted; payment must be made using a card upon arrival.

At the park’s entrance, you can find dining options, toilets, and recent coconuts to enjoy after the route is over.

7. Mount Turrialba

Despite housing one of the nation’s most active volcanoes, Turrialba Volcano, in the Province of Cartago, Turrialba Volcano National Park is thought in order to Costa Rica’s least 

frequented locations. With two recent large eruptions in 2016 and 2017, Turrialba is prone to explosive explosions. With a height of 3,340 metres (10,958 ft), it ranks second in height in Costa Rica (behind Irazu).

SINAC, short for the System of Conservation Areas National, closed to the park visitors in January 2022 as a result of increased volcanic activity. a warning that although being exciting to visit, volcanoes nonetheless present a risk to tourists.

Compared to the more national parks listed, Turrialba is less developed, both the official route just the first 10 km (6.2 mi) into the park are paved.). The unpaved areas, however, are in decent shape.

You must be in reasonable physical condition to complete the 10.5 km (6.5 mile) out-and-back climbing trek that climbs.To the top. Most people should be able to finish this 

trail in less than three hours. A unique cloud and rain forest and a large number of rare Costa Rican animals, including gigantic Howler. Monkeys, toucans, and toads, may be found at

The popular Irazu Volcano

the summit of this volcano. Therefore, in my perspective, the journey to get here was really worthwhile. On the walks here, you may see various historic lava flows.

The popular Irazu Volcano, as I previously mentioned, is only 10 km from Turrialba Volcano, which is a two hours. And fifteen-minute trip from San Jose.

The cost of admission is approximately $12 USD to enter the park. for adults and $5 USD for kids. Everyday from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., it is open.

It’s crucial to emphasise that anyone planning to trek there MUST be a trail guided by a certified guide. This explains why excursions are so well-liked.

If you only have a short amount of Costa Rica time, this all-day excursion, which features stops in Irazu. And Turrialba, is the best option.

 This 10- to 12-hour journey includes a supervised coffee tour and leaves from San Jose.

I appreciate your reading!

I’m hoping this list has helped. assisted you in determining which volcanoes to see if you’re considering a trip to. Costa Rica and you really must see one.

There are obviously many for you to read since Costa Rica is famous for its volcanoes. These were just the top 7 volcanoes in Costa Rica that you really must see.

I really appreciate you reading. Ideally, you liked reading our article on Costa Rica’s top volcanoes. When you did, make sure to look around and read increased our comprehensive guides, like:

Irshad Ali
Irshad Ali
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