At 1,633 meters (5,357 feet) above sea level, Arenal Volcano has been until recently the most active in Central America and was considered to be one of the world's ten most active volcanoes! As you can imagine this is a popular spot for anyone wanting to visit Costa Rica therefore you should be aware, in peak season especially, this is by no means the peaceful area it once was. Despite the coach loads it can draw it is a stunning part of the country and well worth including on a trip to Costa Rica.
Although the volcano is no longer delivering its sporadic eruptions it is a magnificent peak and there is plenty to do in the area. The volcano can be difficult to see, especially in the dry season as it is often shrouded by cloud but its an incredible sight if you are lucky enough and the surrounding lava fields are also fascinating.
You can explore the area by combining a multitude of activities such as canopy walkways, horse-riding, canoeing and walking. The nearby hot springs, though busy, make for a special experience bathing beneath the stars and the nearby Cano Negro Wildlife Refuge is well worth a day trip.
The volcano's growth over the ages has been characterized by a number of eruptions - the last major one of which occurred on 29th July 1968. This eruption blasted off the top of the volcano creating the volcano shape that can be seen today.
The nearby Cano Negro Wildlife Refuge is well worth a day trip. This is one of the most densely populated areas of Costa Rica but we have found some fabulous accommodation in this scenic and beautiful region.
Suggested itineraries featuring Arenal Volcano
Our itineraries will give you suggestions for what is possible when you travel in Arenal Volcano, and they showcase routes we know work particularly well. Treat them as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.
Map of Arenal Volcano
Places & hotels on the map
Places near Arenal Volcano
- Monteverde Cloud Forest 18 kilometers away
- Tenorio Volcano 42 kilometers away
- Cano Negro 49 kilometers away
- San Ramon 50 kilometers away
- El Silencio Lodge 52 kilometers away
- Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui 76 kilometers away
- Rincon de la Vieja 80 kilometers away
- San José & Central Valley 90 kilometers away
- Northern Pacific Coast 91 kilometers away
- Punta Islita 102 kilometers away
- Esterillos 107 kilometers away
- Central Pacific Coast 116 kilometers away
- Playa Potrero 118 kilometers away
- Golfo de Papagayo 125 kilometers away
- Tamarindo 125 kilometers away
- Turrialba 128 kilometers away
- Tortuguero & the Caribbean Coast 134 kilometers away
- Manuel Antonio 135 kilometers away
- San Gerardo de Dota 141 kilometers away
- Dominical 164 kilometers away
- Corcovado & Osa Peninsula 227 kilometers away
- Puerto Viejo de Talamanca 232 kilometers away
- Manzanillo 243 kilometers away
Accommodation choices for Arenal Volcano
We’ve selected a range of accommodation options for when you visit Arenal Volcano. Our choices usually come recommended for their character, facilities and service or location. Our specialists always aim to suggest properties that match your preferences.
Ideas for experiencing Arenal Volcano
Our specialists seek out authentic ways to get to know the places that could feature in your trip. These activities reflect some of the experiences they've most enjoyed while visiting Arenal Volcano, and which use the best local guides.