Starting at $60 per night

Overview

Until recent years, Arenal Volcano was one of the most active volcanoes in the world!  On this fun-filled tour we will venture to one of the reserves at the base of the volcano to learn all about the fascinating history of the volcano and surrounding jungle.

Arenal Volcano blew its top so to speak in the deadly 1968 explosion. While it has not erupted since 1968 it still is considered active and shows plenty of signs of life including frequent steam from the crater and hot springs at the base. This sleeping giant could wake at any time!

The tour takes place at the "1968 Trail" which is located at the base of the iconic volcano. This trail through the rainforest is part of a private reserve. With a little luck and cooperation from Mother Nature, your bilingual guide will try to find and point out some of the local residents including peccaries, toucans, parrots, sloths, monkeys, frogs and more.

The hike itself is considered easy, although it does include walking along trails that can be muddy at times and does have some inclines and declines along the path. After about an hour or two, you will reach a clearing directly in front of the volcano.  Weather permitting you will have an excellent view of the mighty Arenal.

After the tour you will be driven back to your local area hotel. In total, the tour lasts around 3 hours including transportation. While we make every effort to use the 1968 Trail and give the most accurate timeline forecasts, we ask you to keep in mind that there are many factors that can affect the course of the hike.

The Natural History and Nature tour in Arenal Volcano is a fantastic option to acquire knowledge about the history of the volcano and be able to see some wildlife. This half day expedition includes entrance to the private reserve, transportation and a naturalist guide.

What to Bring

  • Binoculars
  • Camera
  • Fully Enclosed Shoes
  • Insect Repellent
  • Rain Gear

Location and Availability

The Arenal Volcano Nature and History Tour is available from Arenal, Arenal Zone 2, and Arenal Zone 3

Tour Times

  • 7:45am
  • 3:00pm

Tour Type

  • Nature
  • Learning Family
  • Wildlife Hike

Cancellation Policy

Cancellation Policy

Location

Latitude: N 10°29'5.64". Longitude: W 85°16'10.83"

Reviews

  • Overall 89.9% (471 Guest Ratings)
  • Experience: 88.9%
  • Expectations: 88.0%
  • Guides: 91.6%
  • Logistics: 90.9%
  • Value: 89.2%

05/04/2017

Very rushed. Did not meet exceptions could have been a nice tour under different circumstances.

03/14/2017

It was a beautiful day and a nice hike, but unfortunately there wasn't much to see in terms of wildlife. Would have been useful to have known more about this sanctuary ahead of time because we may have planned additional hikes here.

03/11/2017

The guide was wonderful and was very interested in what he taught us. For some reason, I guess I expected to feel more of the volcano. My fault.

03/10/2017

Maybe it was just me, but was very hard to navigate, steps were very high. I would not do it again, but the guide was very courteous and knowledgeable.

03/09/2017

What is the difference between 'overall experience' and 'experience'!!! Our guide was very knowledgeable about both the volcano and the local flora and fauna.

03/02/2017

Unfortunately due to the weather (low clouds and a bit of rain) we were unable to take the trail leading to the base area of the volcano. Instead enjoyed a hike on another trail through the surrounding area. Very knowledgeable guide (Danny) who shared with us the history of the region.

02/26/2017

The tour was in a beautiful area. We saw quite a bit of wildlife and our guide was friendly and very knowledgable. The trail was very steep and would probably not be for everyone!

02/23/2017

Loved our tour guide, he was very young, but very well versed. We saw an anteater! The scenery was beautiful. The hike was just perfect.

02/16/2017

Excellent guide - so much enthusiasm that it was infectious - very knowledgeable and entertaining. Would have liked a bit more "wildlife" but that is not always a controllable feature.

02/15/2017

History of the volcano well explained

02/11/2017

the guide was very knowledgeable and had a good sense of humor. We had a fun time

02/05/2017

What a day full! I learned so much and highly recommend this tour.

02/03/2017

Dani our guide was great!!

01/30/2017

Amazing guides. So knowledgeable, friendly and resourceful!

01/23/2017

Danny is an AMAZING tour guide, super knowledgable and friendly. He was clearly passionate about nature and his study of it, kept us entertained and safe in the jungle and we enjoyed his company very much. Highly recommend him as a guide.

01/22/2017

Much easier hike, with no physical challenge as expected. Also MUCH shorter than we wanted.

01/16/2017

Our guide was very friendly and it was a pleasure going on the tour.

01/11/2017

It was a much harder hike than we oldsters anticipated. We are in good shape, but we managed. I guess what dampened it for us (literally) was that it rained the whole time and we did not every get to see Arenal clearly. I know that is the breaks. The guide was superb!!

01/08/2017

Cloudy. Could not see the Arenal volcano.

01/05/2017

Our guide was great and knew the animals there and history quite well. Made it very fun.

12/30/2016

One of the best tour experiences we've had anywhere, US, other countries, etc. Tour guide extremely knowledgable and personable.

12/27/2016

This was our least favorite - it was ok, but looking back it was kind of boring and we wished we wouldn't have chosen something with more adventure. Our tour guide was great and an interesting few hours, but given the chance again, I'd pick a different 1/2 day adventure.

12/24/2016

A bit rigorous for some of our family.

12/21/2016

The guide was very nice and accommodating for the walking for my mother.

12/12/2016

Did not see a lot, it could be due to the rain. A little disappointing.

12/05/2016

Very knowledgeable guide, engaging with my son and deep appreciation for wildlife. Was unprepared for the hike in the dark.

11/27/2016

Our guide was very good. He had a routine that involved the things we saw as hiked the trail. He was also very adaptable to help us locate the critters along the path.

11/20/2016

Our tour guide was very knowledgeable and friendly.

11/11/2016

We ended up with a private tour this day and our guide was outstanding!!

11/09/2016

Excellent

09/30/2016

It was pouring rain, so we couldn't do the whole hike, but our tour guide made it worth our time anyway by showing us tree frogs and a great view near the start of the hike. They stopped the car on the way back for us so we could take some great photos at sunset.

08/19/2016

We loved this tour around the volcano as the guide was excellent with fascinating info about the natural history and local wildlife. Beautiful landscape too.

08/09/2016

Awesome guide, very friendly and knowledgeable.

08/03/2016

Fabulous guide

07/29/2016

great guide and a nice time.

07/27/2016

The weather (clouds) did not allow for the original hike, but we enjoyed the alternative.

07/26/2016

A relaxed, relatively short walk near the volcano. Lovely scenery and great for an introduction to the arenal area. We did this walk on our first day in Costa Rica and it was a great way to start after our previous day of transit. I wouldn't say this is the most exciting of tours but it is a nice, easy starting point for in early in a trip.

07/19/2016

Very knowledgeable guide. Enjoyed the hike very much.

07/12/2016

Weather was an issue as it rained heavily before and towards the end of the tour so time was an issue. Would have liked to spend a little more time but (again no fault of tour). Guide (Royvin) was extremely knowledgeable and passionate about the volcano/area and made the tour more interesting. Got incredible photos of red-eyed tree frogs and saw Howler monkeys/pit viper too.

07/09/2016

This was a beautiful hike and the guide was more than patient with others in our group that were goofing off or lagging behind. It made for some great pictures and was a completely different terrain and view than anything we had seen on our trip.

06/16/2016

Our guide as awesome. He really took his time with the group and was very knowledgeable.

06/05/2016

This was great. Knowledgeable guide and very pleasant.

05/27/2016

It was just the 3 of us on the tour, the guide was amazing. Totally knew his stuff and made a "learning" tour one of the best of the trip. He also suggested a local place for lunch and food was good and not expensive - Soda Resturant Viquez

05/21/2016

Day was wonderful, Guide Roy, was very knowledgeable and has a super personality.

05/16/2016

Our guide, Jose Danny, could not have been more wonderful. He has a genuine interest in, and knowledge of the region, and he engaged our curiosity and questions with respect and good humor.

05/09/2016

The guides were fantastic!

04/23/2016

Our tour guide was so accomplished we thought he surely had an advanced degree in biology or botany. He knew the history of the area and the volcano and every bird, plant and animal that we came across, not just their names but their scientific names. Amazing hike - especially since we had him all to ourselves.

03/26/2016

Our guide was so excited about his job. He made it really fun for us. He took extra time and made sure we got great pictures!! Great experiance.

03/25/2016

They could have explained the flora more - there were no discussions around the types of trees etc. so a large part of the walk was just quiet. But the guide was nice and polite etc.

03/21/2016

Highly recommended

03/14/2016

Great guide who stopped off in the way so we could see a sloth and other wildlife . Great views of the volcano . Loved it

03/13/2016

Our guide was awesome. Very knowledgeable and very personable. Arrived on time and went out of his way to ensure we saw and learned alot about the tour. Excellent value.

03/06/2016

Well organised and informative.

03/05/2016

Awesome guide - very knowledgeable

02/26/2016

Bit of a ho hum short and simple walk. To be honest we expected to see more. The guide was a replacement for someone that day. Seemed knowledgeable enough but lacking maturity. Overall I could not recommend this tour.

02/25/2016

Another wonderful guide.

02/19/2016

Hike was very short, and there wasn't much to see

02/13/2016

Our tour guide was fantastic. Well spoken and knowledgeable.

02/11/2016

The guide/s were very knowledgeable and friendly.

02/10/2016

Thought we would see more of the volcano I guess thought we would be closer .

02/09/2016

Our tour guide explained a few things, but talked more about himself and movies he'd seen. He was very nice, but we didn't learn much. We got to the top of the mountain, but would never have known we were at a volcano.

02/03/2016

Our tour with Carlos was the highlight of our 2 week vacation. He was a wealth of knowledge, fun to be around and truly loved what he was doing. Wish there were more animals but he found some things and took pictures on our camera so we brought home great memories.

02/02/2016

Carlos was very knowledgeable, friendly and fun. He was an expert in photography and helped us take some great photographs.

01/29/2016

Very good guide. Lots of information on the volcano and the flora and fauna. Would recommend this trip and the guide.

01/17/2016

Wish we could have hiked higher on the mountain. Was a little slow going.

01/06/2016

Really great tour guide

01/03/2016

Nice guide, but I wanted more information and to see more.

12/25/2015

The transport for this tour was a very old, moldy vehicle...

12/24/2015

Fantastic - would recommend to others

12/23/2015

Amazing breakfasts, staff were remarkable. Didn't even mind the rain.

12/20/2015

This was a fun experience, and I would give it all 10s, but I want to distinguish this trek from the others that were even more exciting and fun. This one was fine, and the guide was fun, thoughtful and knowledgeable, but the other adventures were more exciting. Also the volcano remained shrouded in clouds the whole time we were there, but apparently that's really common.

12/19/2015

Great history of Arenal, hector our guide was very knowledgeable and even took us to town for great local dinner.

12/14/2015

Did not see many animals, but guide was nice and informative.

12/12/2015

Our favorite tour, the tour guy was the BEST!!!

12/02/2015

Carlos & Hector were very good and experienced guides

11/30/2015

I did not take the tour to the top. It was getting toward dark and I didn't think I could make it up the last part. The guide was very knowledgeable and answered all our questions. We were not totally prepared for hike. We neglected to read the suggested preparation like bringing rain gear, flash lights and hiking boots. The tour ended in the dark. Luckily some of our cell phones has flash lights so we could get down the mountain.

11/18/2015

The guide really knew his history of the area, the plant life and allowed us to hike a bit in the dark.

11/05/2015

We were unable to take the hike through the forest due to a severe thunder storm. The guide was very safety conscious. We had a very interesting bus tour instead. I learned much about the volcano from the guide.

11/03/2015

We were lucky enough to have a guide who is an experienced and very knowledgeable birdwatcher. This was a perfect fit for us. He was outstanding. He showed us so many of the birds we were hoping to see in CR. terrific trip.

08/23/2015

Tour was good .I was hoping to see a little more wild life, but I do understand
that you have no control over such things

08/17/2015

Was expecting to get closer to the Volcano and to see more wild life. Also, it would have been nice to have the tour later in the day so that we would not have to wake up so early

08/15/2015

Although they had our tour time incorrect, the company was able to fix it and work with Ecoglide to ensure we were able to do both excursions. Our guide was amazing and even took us on an extended tour so we could see the monkeys!

08/02/2015

I thought we would be walking on the old lava, climbing boulders near the top of the volcano - it was just a nature walk at the base and we didn't see much. I wish we would have seen more of the actual volcano and rocks - we saw plenty of the rainforest later on.

07/26/2015

Guide knew alot about plants.

07/23/2015

Our guide was extremely knowledgeable about the area, wildlife, and history. I liked how there were only two families on the tour which made it very personable. The scenery was breathtaking!

07/21/2015

Jason was the best guide we had on our trip. He was very nice, informative, knew history, plants, animals, etc.. There was a pretty steep climb & we saw lots of things. Great time!

07/15/2015

It was a good tour. They stopped to show us stuff and we saw quite a bit.

07/14/2015

For one, the hike was cut short because of a sudden downpour of rain. The guide (Rinaldo?) was very nice and exceedingly knowledgeable. In fact, his knowledge really slowed down our hike. To much stopping with lengthy descriptions of the habitat and history. One stop was well over 20 mins., just standing and listening. I'm all for learning, but it dominated the experience. We actually didn't reach the summit where we can view the volcano and had to turn back because of the rain. If we could have kept the talk to a minimum, I believe we could have reached it no problem. Anyhow, the guide is really nice, just more hiking and less talking would have been better.

06/17/2015

Nice hike, but couldn't see much due to cloud cover. Guide stopped too many times along the way so ran out of time to do more hiking. Saw some wild life, but not as much as expected.

06/16/2015

Bad weather so couldn't see much but the guide (Jason) did a great job trying to find things for us to see and discuss. He made up for the bad weather

06/06/2015

I would not consider this an "easy" hike just for future reference. It is not like scaling a mountain or anything but especially while raining trails were challenging. Easy for anyone in prime shape, but older out-of-shape persons would feel it moderate to challenging.

06/02/2015

Our guide was wonderful. He took his time, took pictures of us, took pictures of snakes and frogs for us that we didn't quite want to get too close to. He was funny and very knowledgeable. A great experience.

06/01/2015

This tour we enjoyed but would be one to skip if you had other to replace it with..

05/17/2015

Great guide, gave us a birding tour, as well as two extra hours, as that was our main interest. I think it was Reynaldo.

05/09/2015

We had so much fun on this tour and so much history was provided.

05/06/2015

Guide was great, very informative and he found us monkeys. We would have like more hiking and a faster pace.

04/25/2015

The guide was entertaining, knowledgeable, and we learned a lot about the volcano and the various plants on the trail. He made sure we got a picture of the red eyed frog at night.

04/17/2015

Very interesting and information. The area is beautiful.

04/10/2015

Very nice private hike. Slightly slower pace than what I would have liked. But very good.

04/07/2015

Our tour guide was absolutely awesome. The black moss on the volcanic rocks was super cool!

04/03/2015

The guide was wonderful! Very friendly and knowledgeable. There was a little bit of waiting around to get back to our hotel at the end, but not too bad.

03/23/2015

Guide was fit and knowledgeable. The first hike offered and good but windy view of the volcano. The longer tour through the woods was very relaxing and enjoyable.

03/21/2015

I expect to see more wildlife. The flowers and plants were amazing and our guide gave excellent explanations, but sometimes spent too much time talking about himself instead of the surroundings.

03/18/2015

the tour guide was awesome he knew so much and even found termites to taste!

03/16/2015

Did not have good luck with weather so did not get to hike close to volcano. Guide did a great job making it a nature tour instead.

03/08/2015

Walking at the base of the volcano was not a worthwhile trip. I thought we would be walking up to the rim.

03/06/2015

I loved this walk. Would do this again. Reynaldo was our tour guide and he was phenomenal. He show us everything from plants to animals and the region. I learned so much in this short walk. I would hire and recomend Reynaldo to everyone I know. I woudl rate this part of my trip a 20.

03/02/2015

I would have liked a longer hike. I found that we spent a lot of time standing listening/talking. Although the guide was very knowledgeable and pleasant, I would have enjoyed a longer, more strenuous walk that covered more ground in addition to the history and information.

03/01/2015

In spite of the tropical downpour the trip was well worth while. I have rarely experienced a harder rain.

02/24/2015

The logistics were perfect. The tour was a little less than we thought. I had thought we'ld see more of the volcano but the planning of it was great and the guide was very friendly.

02/20/2015

We could have easily done this on our own. Our guide Reynaldo was very enthusiastic, a pleasure to be with.

02/19/2015

Your guide was amazing and knowledgable

02/17/2015

Great adventure and the tour guide was so funny and knowledgeable....

02/11/2015

Ronaldo was AMAZING! had a great time

02/04/2015

Defeated by the uphill walk and disappointed that we actually didn't get to see anything of the volcano. Very informative.

02/02/2015

Knowledgeable guide who obviously loved the history of the volcano. My husband, a former geology teacher, became part of the tour.

01/31/2015

Unfortunately, our guide seemed quite young and inexperienced. A rather nice young man, but it felt like he needed more experience guiding.

01/29/2015

rained too much to truly enjoy

01/20/2015

The rainforest hike was spent mostly looking down so as not to trip. The trail was very rough. If there had been things to see in the canopy, we would have missed it. Disappointed since this was our first rainforest adventure.

01/19/2015

The guide was great. We went in the pouring rain--not anyone's fault--we don't control the weather. So there wasn't a lot of wildlife. However, at the very start of the tour we were taken to a tree where we could see a sloth who was actually moving. The tour folks did everything they could to make this a good experience in the pouring rain. I would recommend this.

12/17/2014

The guide knew his stuff, pointed out things we couldn't see.

12/04/2014

It was a rainy afternoon, so we did not get to see any wildlife or a good view of the volcano.

11/29/2014

We were the only two on this tour and we really enjoyed the tour, our guide and the views.

11/19/2014

I thought we would see more of the volcano