Explore the most popular Bird Watching trails in Alajuela with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

ThIs is definitely a hard trail. When you get to the split at the top, go right. It’s steep down, but if you made it that far you will be fine. Do not go left. . The trail is not maintained and it’s hard to find the lake from there. Also def bring insect repellent or you will be eaten alive by the mosquitoes, they are everywhere. Lastly watch out for SNAKES. I almost ran into a jumping viper and saw death flash before my eyes. KEEP YOUR EYES ON THE TRAIL

hiking
private property
10 days ago

guided tour was completely worth it (entrance fee + US$20). Andres pointed out fauna we wouldn't have seen otherwise. hiking itself was super easy.

Absolutely amazing end to a great but difficult trail! Give yourself the day! Enjoy the hike and brings lots of water!

hiking
muddy
scramble
28 days ago

Awesome hike! If you're in the area, I highly recommend considering this one. It is very difficult though, as everyone else has already stated. I clocked it at about 2.1 miles from the GreenLagoon reception building to the edge of the lake in the crater. If you enjoy using your hands and feet, getting dirty, and hiking in the jungle, this hike is perfect for you.

hiking
closed
muddy
over grown
scramble
1 month ago

My friend and I did this about a month ago. It was nuts. Very worth it but difficult. When you get to the top of the volcano and begin your descent, there are two paths to go. One to the right and one to the left. We chose the one to the right and it was a big mistake. It was almost a vertical face of straight mud and we were grasping for anything we could hold onto as we slid down. We had to swim around the lake with all of our gear to find a better way up which did work out well. So when you get to the top, definitely take the left trail to begin descent to the lake. Also, you have to ignore a lot of warning and closed signs but it is well worth it.

hiking
muddy
scramble
2 months ago

Loved this hike! Nearly 3/4ths of the hike is root and mud scrambles, it’s difficult but so fun. Took us about 3 hours and 20 min to complete including 40 min of swimming/hanging out at the lake. Make sure to have good hiking shoe traction. Do not do this hike if you have limited hiking experience or have knee issues.

They moved the dead body! Quite the challenging hike but well worth it.

hiking
muddy
rocky
3 months ago

The path is difficult but it is not very long. It is well marked so impossible to get lost. It's awesome because you really get inside the jungle. Also I did not find other trails that are not very commercial to say in the area.

Challenging hike but well worth the effort once that first glimpse of the lake! As the other reviews state, you'll need to pass barbwire, it's muddy, and you'll need your hands and feet for this one!

When it comes to difficulty/ reward ratio, this is perfect. It is absolutely not for the faint of heart or for those who are not physically fit. But if you are able to push past those last 2kms then you'll be greeted by the most beautiful untouched lake at the top of the volcano. On our way down however, we found a man in the ground who had a heart attack and died, so this is a hike that I'd only recommend if you're in good shape.

very easy hike...not much to see or experienced..

hiking
closed
muddy
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

The marked trail doesn’t afford good views, being in tall reeds / woods almost all the way. Lots of tourists too. Not much wildlife viewing. Very easy and still nice. Much better is the shorter hike directly up slope to a shelter, shown as the short white path toward east on AllTrails map. Less traffic, saw a river of army ants, cute birds, orchids , and almost constant view of the volcano.

Great trail with family

This trail is officialy closed : barbed wires limits its entrence and sometimes a guard patrols there and ask you to leave. You can however get around the wires and hope that nobody guards the entry. You can access the trail through a private path belonging to GreenLagoon cabinas (they dont explicitely warn you that the cero chato trail is closed but will charge you 5000 crc/ 10 usd entry fees) but there might be another way to access the trail. The trail remains difficult : since its closed the path is not maintained and the forest is ALWAYS muddy so you mainly have to climb your way down to the lake (super steep and slippery). Took us 6h (1h of break included). It however TOTALLY WORTH IT : funniest and most beautiful hike I ever did (plus you can swim in a volcano).

Unfortunately this trail is closed , supposedly for governmental reasons:-(

Gonna need your feet AND hands for this one. So cool though! Can officially say I’ve dipped into a volcanic crater lake. Steep up and down into the crater, hopefully it’s a clear day so you can see the entire thing.

Checked in at the green lagoon to get passes, ten dollars per person. Had to go around the barb wire fence. Challenging hike lots of climbing, took us 4h total at a fast pace. It rained the whole time and it became slippery on the way down. Worth the hike but dont expect the view in bad weather.

Great hike. Make sure you have good shoes because it will get slippery. Bring plenty of water.

awesome but hard trail. it gets more difficult step by step. as we started laid, the crater it self was filled with clouds. paid 10$. no problem to enter national park.

Awesome hike! If you want to escape from the too easy, touristy hikes, do this one! It is a little hard but very fun. Bring proper shoes though.

The guard was not there today so we were able to hike all the way to the crater!! It was so foggy that we could not see to the other side, but awesome to say we swam in the crater of a volcano! You pay $10 per person at the hotel near Arenal Observatory then hike the Fortuna Observatory trail. You will cross to the illegal part of the hike once you go through the opening of the barbed wire. You can also start this hike from the La Fortuna waterfall which is $15 a person and a shorter hike I believe.

We had heard that Cerro Chato was closed but decided to give it a try we decided to go through Arenal Observatory Lodge, we were warned hiking Cerro Chato was illegal and would not give us information. But we found our way, unfortunately they have a guard at their property line to turn people back so we weren't able to go up. Seems like Cerro Chato is no longer an option in Arenal.

Wild hike!!

hiking
7 months ago

amazing

hiking
7 months ago

Lots of steps up to the top, the fog was over the lake so I couldn't see it but it was a very fun trial really accessible from town about an hour each way

This was by far the hardest hike I have ever done, but it was so worth it. I recommend going in the water of the lagoon. The feeling of the ice cold water after the long hike was refreshing not to mention pretty exciting knowing we are in a volcanic lagoon!!

One of my all time favorites. We got here early in the morning during rainy season. Trek up was very difficult because of how slippery and muddy everything was, but the elements made it more enjoyable honestly. The views from the top were beautiful and then you take a pretty steep hike down to the crater. We got down to it, a lot of fog was rolling in and it made for a super eerie yet serene setting.

This hike was absolutely breath taking. One of the highlights of our trip.

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