Explore the most popular walking 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.

Pura vida!

hiking
6 days ago

AWESOME hike to the most beautiful waterfalls I have ever seen! The hike is longer than the 2.5 miles one way that is advertised. More like 3. So six miles round trip. Very steep in parts but totally worth the hike. Definitely bring your for wheel drive car so you can drive down to the parking lot. It’s a steep muddy road and if you can’t drive down it you have to walk and that would add another 3 miles to your trip!! But this is a must see!!!

overall 4 stars. it should be labeled as easy. it took us 30 minutes to the tenorio or area where the rivers meet. we high tailed it to the top and stopped for pictures on the way down. completed this 7/7/18 after many days of rain. the waterfall was not blue because of the rain but where the rivers meet you could see the blue color. you dont need to rent the rain gear or the mud boots. I did it in tshirt and shoes and didnt end up very muddy.

Dont listen to other posters, you can still hike this. Just finished going to the green lagoon at the top of cerro chato 7/9/18. It has rained several days in a row and it rained the entire hike but it was worth it. I did the salkantay in peru a month ago and although this cant compare in distance or altitude it was at times more intense. be prepared to slip and fall and use your hands to climb. I did not use a guide and had a friend who doesn't hike much and we made it to the lagoon in 1 hour and 50 minutes. most hikes I halve the time up on the way down but on this one it took us longer down. it is much more treacherous going down. some places they have ropes for you to lower yourself down. definitely do this hike. it's great. we had planned on going from the arenal observatory but right before you get there there is a parking lot with a big sign. the guy there will give you a map and only charges you $10 per person. he was very nice and will actually guide you to the top of arenal which is also closed.

hiking
10 days ago

If you like beautiful scenery on a hike, this is about as good as it gets. It only took us about 35 minutes to reach the waterfall so if you want a short trek you could always just stop there and head back. If you go a little farther, though, you can reach a look out point, a blue lagoon, and finally a point where two rivers combine to create the opaque sky blue color of the Rio Celeste. The hike is more challenging after the waterfall (uneven rocks, steeper and more mud) but it is definitely worth it. It was extremely muddy when we went in mid March so definitely wear hiking shoes you don't care about getting dirty. We wore waterproof hiking sandals (like Keens) and they were great. You can also rent galoshes at the base of the hike if you want. Finally, entrance to the hike cost $12/person and THEY CLOSE AT 2 PM so make sure you arrive before then (you can still hike after 2). Enjoy!

hiking
27 days ago

Very fun and very steep. At the top, we tried to follow the trail to the right, but it was a lot like bushwhacking and sliding down a mountain. (maybe we missed the trail?) The trail to the left was much more reasonable and led to a beach that we had all to ourselves. Hard work but worth it.

Awesome awesome waterfall amazing views excellent little hike up and down not too difficult but a little bit challenging on the way back

Water is beautiful the price is OK and people are fantastic highly recommend

Great hike. First step is to pay reception guy at Green Lodge. He will point you in the right direction. The first part of the hike is fairly civilized and then dives into the jungle for a potentially muddy jaunt up. Veer to the left anytime you see barbed wire and you should be able to just go around. Walk down to the crater is as treacherous as advertised. We found that using a walking stick as a third point of support helped a ton. Lagoon is gorgeous. You'll be exhausted when you get back but you won't regret it. Just make sure the forecast is dry and you have good shoes. Never boring, never monotonous. Loved this hike.

incredible! the lake so is senrene and peaceful. I recommend you to bring snacks and plenty of water. it took us about 2 hours to get to the summit and 1 hour to get back

1 month ago

This trail is challenging and liberating. It took us around 2 hours to get to the lake and a hour to get back to the car.

Amazingly beautiful waterfall. However the hike can be difficult since it gets muddy and slippery. Getting to the waterfall will make you go down and up over 100 stairs. Still worth it.

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.

hiking
2 months ago

Super easy, man made trail, no guide is needed.

The waterfall is breathtaking and extremely strong.

hiking
2 months ago

Super easy trail, it usually rains there so invest in the rental rain boots, it gets muddy. The trail is well maintained and the water absolutely breathtaking. I found the trail to be easy, anyone who walks regularly can do it.

Beautiful, tranquil, and a great workout if you’re spending time hiking the longer trails. I would actually say it’s more moderate than easy. If you only do the waterfall trail, it’s easy. If you go to La Ventana, across the suspension bridge, then out to the waterfall - you are climbing steps and it feels like you’re on a stair master for a good 40 minutes. It’s hard. We did a few trails and it came out to about 5.5 miles. We spent 2.5 hours and the reception told us that the trails we did normally take 3 hours. Bring water. The mosquitoes are minimal if any (here in May) but there are lots of bugs so bug spray is helpful. It’s mostly shades but there are a few spots you’re exposed to sun.
La Ventana (continental divide is not labeled anywhere on the deck, it’s pretty lack luster. Good view of the forest though. Also if you cross the suspension bridge then you don’t need to do another sky walk tour because it’s the same thing; walking on a bridge over the air plants. Very cool but if you’re looking to save money and see it all, come here and do 3-4 trails.

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.

Sendero Mirador has a beautiful view point when you get up there. Totally worth it.

hiking
2 months ago

Great and easy hike. The trailhead is across the road the stop sign at Calle Madrigal and HWY 34 (another reference point: Its also across the road from the gas station). At the trailhead there will be a house on the left, some wooden recycling bins on the right, and then a steep paved roadway in front. This paved roadway is the beginning of the trail. It will turn into dirt. Along the way there will some archways on the road for a nice viewpoint. At the only fork in the road, take a sharp LEFT and then shortly you will see a paved sidewalk on the left. Follow this to the main lookout/abandoned restaurant.

The most incredible hike I have have ever been on! Highly highly recommend. We used google maps to get us to the start of the trail, once we got to the gazebo the trail is very obvious from there to the top (we had to go under a barbed wire fence to find the trail at the start). At the top we had a hard time finding the trail down to the lake. Some hikers leaving the volcano pointed it out to us. It is steep, but if you’re fit it’s very worth it. We came out looking like we rolled around in mud (and at times on this trail we probably did). But one of our favorite days in CR by far. Enjoy!

3 months ago

Good hike for bird watchers

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

nature trips
3 months ago

Right next to the Caribbean sea. You'll see animals galore .Couple of stream crossings and a definitely dip in the Caribbean sea.

Great hike for animal watching.

walking
3 months ago

Beautiful waterfalls and relaxing swim hole to the left .There's alot of fish that'll be swimming around you.

The “trail” is concrete steps down to the waterfall. Cost us $6 (USD) per person. The area is pretty enough, but even when we went on a Monday it was packed. There’s a lifeguard who doesn’t allow people to swim too close to the falls. Very pretty, but we only ended up spending about an hour there.

walking
3 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

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
3 months ago

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