Explore the most popular trail running 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.

Great views of the whole valley as you up the path. Not too challenging but does get a little steep in places.

Great for families as it’s mostly flat but gets you into the forest seeing animals and waterfalls.

There is two path you can follow. The red one is the shorter ans the easier and leads you directly to the lava flow. The yellow is longer and a little more difficult and leads you to beautiful points of view. Both of the trails starts at the same point. Along the way you can see monkeys, lizards and many birds. Very nice trail. I suggest to save the panorama (where there is a little coffee shop) for the end. Can be slippery when raining.

Take caution if you come here. I’m studying abroad in Costa Rica for five months and one thing I learned is that if a local tells you not to go somewhere..don’t go. I got home after doing this hike and my host mother was appalled that I went to such an unsafe place. The location of this hike is in one of the most dangerous/ crime-infested areas of San José, so if you go, go in a group or not at all. The view was cool though.

Peaceful hike and probably the best view of volcano along with lava rocks.

Great hike for animal watching.

Stayed at the observatory lodge in February 2016. The facilities were really nice but what made it truly fantastic was the resort was located already in the Arenal Volcano National Park. Saw owls by night and toucans and amazing rainforest birds by day (mostly around sunrise). The trails around the property were really well maintained and very quiet for the most part (maybe timing of our visit). There were really cool hanging bridges to cross over through the rainforest, beautiful gardens, open prairies with crazy views of Arenal in the background sooo close by, and an awesome waterfall you could walk down to just off the trail. The observatory lodge trails are all easy to moderate. The trail to hike up Cerro Chato volcano was pretty difficult and muddy (quick elevation gain in a short distance) but the view up top of the lake in the middle was beautiful.

nature trips
4 months ago

A nice walk with some decent views of the volcano. Not sure if it would be worth the money back home, but on vacation, it’s a cheap activity that is gratifying.

Great views! Very steep in several places, but worth it.

Great trail in the dry season. Seems nearly impossible during the rainy season. Well worth the easy half-day trip out of SJ.

Awesome views of the volcano and lake

Other than seeing a lot of lava rocks on the path and views of the volcano, this was a boring hike. I would not do again

hiking
6 months ago

Awesome trail with side trails leading to two waterfalls and 'cold water pots' where volcanic gasses are bubbling out of shallow pools of water. The hot springs themselves are warm and pleasant, but do smell a bit like eggs because of their sulfur content. We saw lots of wildlife on the trail including a large troop of white-headed capuchins.

there are multiple trails that actually go up to the biggest cross so I've heard. the trail was slick and overgrown, but the views going up were worth it. very steep and rocky.

hiking
Saturday, July 29, 2017

Fun hike to get a great view of Arenal Volcano and Lake Arenal. The trail is very well maintained (it is actually raked frequently) and well marked. The Forest Trail is mostly covered, except when you approach the Lava Summit and observation point. The View Point has a Smoothie Stand if you're interested in a tasty, fresh fruit smoothie.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

the trail itself was great. our only difficulty was that there was zero signage and a few times we had to double back. there were a few spots where the rain has washed the trail to a fairly steep grade but other than that it was good.

hiking
Friday, March 17, 2017

The hike was as reviewed by the others. We went on a Friday and met exactly 0 people on the trail which is nice. If you had a 4x4 you could drive up past the resteraunt about 4-500 meters before the trail forks off which is marked. we were about 2 hours up and 40 min down. It is pretty much straight up, a good slog for my 61 year old lungs.
Fantastic views and cow pattys. Unfortunately the two resterants were closed when we got down, Friday 1.30?beers delayed

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Great hike with awesome views of San Jose. Trail was A little overgrown with vegetation in some areas, but clear visible path the entire way. Previous review with directions to Restaurante Valle Azul (great view and hospitable for beer and wifi afterward) and dirt path to the right were spot on. Recommended!

Fantastic views. Bring a camera! Not technically difficult but very very steep in places though. Would recommend a walking stick for those who need it. On the way down, the earth is loose, so watch that you don't slip.

hiking
Monday, April 04, 2016

Great hike in Escazu. Park at Valle Azue Restaurant, and start up the dirt road to the right of the restaurant. Takes you to 3 distinct crosses, with each one more impressive. It's a pretty steady incline, but the trail is in good condition with no need for technical climbing. The views at the 3rd cross are outstanding, and there were many families there enjoying the views and having an early lunch picnic. Definitely worth the climb!

hiking
7 months ago

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