Cerra Chato [CLOSED]

MODERATE 12 reviews

Cerra Chato [CLOSED] is a 2.7 kilometer lightly trafficked out and back trail located near San Ramón, Alajuela, Costa Rica that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round.

2.7 km
350 m
Out & Back



nature trips








washed out


no dogs

25 days ago

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

4 months ago

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

Pura vida!

7 months 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.

11 months ago

Very muddy towards the summit. Currently, in these conditions I think this hike is in the hard category. It took us over three hours each way. Make sure you’re wearing good-gripped shoes!

Saturday, September 16, 2017

That was our first hike in Costa Rica and we enjoyed it very much. We hiked from the Lodge to the Laguna and the lush rainforest and abundant wildlife impressed us a lot. The laguna is beautiful.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Great hike - challenging from La Fortuna climbing mostly roots and washed out eroded trails. Hope for clear skies at the top for an excellent view of Arenal and the lake below!

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

We hiked from the Arenal Observatory Lodge side which was steep on the way up with huge person-sized mud walls to scramble up. Got pretty exhausting but the lake at the top was incredibly beautiful. Hot and humid so bring lots of water.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Four of us decided to tackle this trail on our own in mid-December, foregoing a tour -- and we're glad we did. A guide is unnecessary if you have any sort of hiking experience and the big groups involved with a tour (we saw them on our descent) would only add to the difficulty. The path is narrow and precarious in many spots, causing large groups to maneuver their way in a compact single-file line. I'm sure they were constantly tripping over each other.

Plan on this being a full-body experience hike, jumping over large puddles and across crevices, grabbing vines and ducking under limbs, and climbing up steep mounds with minimal footholds. There was a monsoon-like downpour the day before (our friends had gotten caught in it, which made this trail turn into a full-fledged river/waterfall -- watch for storms!), so there was mud aplenty. Warning: the clay is red and it does stain your clothes.

Unfortunately we were socked in with clouds at the top, so didn't get to see the view. There is a lagoon off the summit with an incredibly steep and slippery descent to get to it, so it's off-limits. However, people do still go and take a dip, including someone we knew. He is a very experienced hiker and indicated that the hill was even difficult for him to climb up -- but the lagoon swim worth it.

Really cool and unique flora/fauna throughout and some tiny (dangerous?) creatures along the way to remind you that you're smack dab in the middle of a rainforest.

Saturday, June 03, 2017

Beautiful hike with incredible views, and you can take a swim across the lagoon. There are two ways to get up, one shorter and one long. The start near the Arenal Waterfall is very challenging, particularly if muddy. There are intense sections when climbing down to the lagoon as well. Definitely stock up with water, high energy snacks, and your swim trunks!

Saturday, April 01, 2017

The trail starts about 1.5 miles further back, at the observatory, than the map states. Great views at the top, but it is HARD - especially the steep section down to the lake.

Friday, May 26, 2017