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

Very hard the last 2 km, but they are worth it. I went with very heavy rain, so bring impermeable jackets. Don't forget impermeable gloves. Don't hesitate just go forward

no shade
2 days ago

The hike is basically a dirt road - partially shaded and partially sunny. Pretty hot because we went toward the afternoon. That being said, the Waterfall was truly gorgeous and the water was refreshing! There were plenty of people that brought their lunches out and made it an adventure - if I were you I would do the same. We stayed the the waterfall itself for a good hour or so. Swimming and sitting on the rocks looking at the fish!

Nice and easy trail, lots of apes and other wildlife.
You have to cross a small river two times.
If you walk oneway you can take a local bus back.

It’s crazy to see all these animals in their natural habitat. We’ve seen 2 species of monkeys, a lot of iguanas, birds, a deer, a few sloths with babies and other mammals that I don’t remember the name. Definitely worth it! Do the trail with a guide or you won’t spot anything yourself, these guys have lynx eyes!

5 days ago

Great hike, amazing views!! Loved the graffiti ✌

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.

Long line ups to get in so go early. everyone is trying to sell you parking as well so delay paying the first person you see. once in the crowds at Main trail are large and noisy. But we did see Toucans near main gate which we heard guides say was rare. also saw Maccaws lots of Monkeys,raccoons and a Blue Iguana. waterfall trail and Caterdal trails much less busy likely due to there being many stairs to climb. waterfall was dry this time of year but we saw a couple of monkeys along the path. Beach at end of main trail is amazing so take swim gear as there are change rooms and showers available. watch out of thieving monkeys and raccoons here as they are very bold.

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

8 days ago

its worth doing the whole hike to the 3rd waterfall..

Not really a hiking trail. More of an overcrowded walking trail. You’ll see sloths and monkeys for sure, but it’s expensive to get in, and so many people pushing up against you, makes it hard to enjoy the experience. The line to get in is ridiculous. However, at the end of the trail when you end up in the monkey beach, it’s stunning. One of the top rated beaches in the world. But it’s completely possible to just pay less to get into the private beach and enjoy the water And the monkeys trying to steal your bag. My least favorite CR experience by far.

Straight up. Slightly overgrown. But worth the views when killing time in San Jose.

15 days ago

Great trail with an excellent view of the volcano. There is a observation area at the base with rocking chairs.

off trail
17 days ago

Most of the trail is in the forest and extremely off the beaten path. a much better place for pffroading. Not moderate in my opinion but I also don't recommend bringing kids on this as there are some steep climbs. Don't go after it rains. along the trail I stepped knee deep in mud. per the recommendation of a local, I didn't make it to the park because and I was alone and he said it wasn't safe. Seems like a safe area. No animals/birds along the way and not the best. Okay climb/trail. Would do a waterfall hike next time.

trail running
17 days ago

I’m a professional trail runner and this is as good as it gets. NEED YOUR PHOTO ID AND $15 USD for each person. Single track and wider trails with no scrabble and perfect climate. I did a counterclockwise loop called Sector La Pailas off of the Hot Springs Trail. Although I report on trail running I loved it so much I took my wife walking which is why it took 4 hours at walking pace. Saw 3 large groups of capuchin and howler monkeys. There are 6-8 water crossings that will NOT get your feet wet and some crossings have cable assist. This is an awesome trail for walking AND running.

20 days ago

There are a few things people need to know before they do this hike. The first is getting there. The beginning of the trail looks like it's to the left of a dirt road (right after the fork in the road). That is not the beginning!! If you look on the trail map, you'll see it veers to the right for the first half and then juts to the left. The trail starts when the trail juts left! Don't park your car off to the side of the dirt road--drive all the way up until you see the info/ ranger station (if you zoom into the map you'll see there is an info sign right by the top right most point of the trail). There is parking, a bathroom, etc. You'll also need to bring $15 CASH for each person in your party.
The trail itself was nice and not too hard. I'd recommend going to every side trail too as that is where the sights are (the side trails are all marked on the map with black dotted lines). First there is a hummingbird trail (we didn't see any), then the longest side trail is to the cold sulfur bubbling water pools (if you want to skip any, this would be the one), then an enchanted forest which has a waterfall and a brook, then a bigger waterfall, and then finally the hot-springs. It's worth bringing a towel and a bathing-suit. Remember that sulfur reacts with lots of metals so remember to take off jewelry!

28 days ago

The beach at the end is rocky. Good outing.

29 days ago

Good trail well maintained. Some good, steep climbs to keep the heart rate up.
To hike, you must pay ($15USD each hiker).

Such a wonderful experience.

Awesome hike!! I would definitely recommend this to those who want to get out into nature and challenge themselves. You can make it up in an hour, but it will likely take more time than that (90+ minutes) if you want to chill a bit along the way. Definitely follow the "getting there" instructions as it's a bit tricky to find! At the second cross, you can head down to the lower path and take a different way back: from that way you will find a road with a semi-regular bus to San Jose!

Beautiful wet plant life! Every once in a while we could see sun rays peaking through the clouds in the forest. Closest you can get to walking in the clouds. Very neat!

Beautiful waterfall and a nice place to take a dip in the water! Stairs have all been replaced since the last time I was there. Much nicer and easier to climb up and down the stairs now.

Beautiful waterfall. Easy paved walk on stairs.
Nice for a quick and easy adventure.
Bring a suit to swim at the bottom!

To the eastern most point: end of the Bosque Nuboso trail. Saw elfin forests on the Caribbean side of the slope, where clouds roll in with gusty winds. Out and back in 1.5 hours — would have stayed longer if we had more time. Trail well maintained and elevation gain moderate. Unguided. Saw some wildlife.

1 month ago

The waterfall itself is a majestic sight. If you are into waterfalls this is a good stop and people can dip in the plunge pool. Apparently there are lifeguards who will prevent swimmers from getting too close to the fall itself. But from a hiking / nature viewing perspective this is a rather boring place. Travel is confined to the 500+ stairs down. Very little space at the bottom. It seems all tourists to Costa Rica are at the bottom simultaneously! Other than some fish in the stream no wildlife was seems.

1 month 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.

You need tickets, as most places in Costa Rica. Line can be long. The main attraction is wildlife viewing, hiring a guide is strongly recommended (equipment and experience). The walk itself is very easy. Do not touch any plants as our guide showed some unassuming but poisonous ones, and the chance of fer de lance and other snakes. At the beach watch out for capuchin monkeys who will steal everything left unattended, and for those signed large toxic trees.

Great trail with family

We visited the reserve by ourselves, did not saw any wildlife. It is less crowded than monteverde park hopefully. We did the 1h30 and 25 minutes hike (from which you can see the Arenal).

We took a guided tour of the reserve. The trails are well maintained obviously and we saw some wildlife (quetzals, monkeys, hummingbird, ...). Great park.

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