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Self-Guided Arenal Itinerary

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Charleston, South...
posts: 19
reviews: 42
Self-Guided Arenal Itinerary

Hola amigos!

We are excited to have less than a month before we arrive in CR! We have one full day in the area, and I want to maximize the time. Seeking your advice on doing this itinerary - a la carte.

Volcano Hike

*It seems like there are a lot of tours available, but how easy is it to find trails to hike on our own?

*Do we need to pay a park fee?

*Most challenging/rewarding trails to seek - go! :)

Skytrek & Skytram – 3 hrs

*This looks to offer the most value of the Canopy Tours, and most intense. Have you done it? Am I off-base? It's pretty expensive to take a gamble on.

Hanging Bridges

*This seems like so much fun, but the tours are expensive. Is this something we could see without a tour? I'm more interested in the bridges than anything else, which may be funny to you.

*Is there a cost if so?

La Fortuna Waterfall

*I've seen mixed reviews – how far is it from other highlights? Can we drive there?

*Is the cost $10 pp? It seems I saw that on TripAdvisor.

EcoTermales Hot Spring

*We'd like to end our day here, I think. This seems to be the most low-key and less crowded of the hot springs. Is it truly a natural spring? And, is the restaurant onsite delicious?

Thanks, experts!


posts: 635
reviews: 33
11. Re: Self-Guided Arenal Itinerary

We are staying at Nayara Hotel and one of the package tours is to the Eco Termales hot springs. Transportation is not included. Any idea how close it is?

Also, I notice they have 3 hour or 4 hour time slots , do you really need that long? We are trying to fit a lot in and do want to spend some time just R & R at the hotel., I would go in the evening but I would want to get back to the hotel by 8:30 pm since our dinner is part of the package we have already paid for.

Any advice would be appreciated.

Edited: 4:28 pm, January 13, 2013
Baton Rouge...
posts: 364
reviews: 62
12. Re: Self-Guided Arenal Itinerary

blondegeek - since no one responded with info, I e-mailed AOL directly to ask about hiking on their trails as a day visitor. The entry fee for visitors is $6 and you can hike on your own, no advance reservations necessary.

3 1/2 weeks until departure!

Charleston, South...
posts: 19
reviews: 42
13. Re: Self-Guided Arenal Itinerary

@hummingbird - thank you SO MUCH! That was really kind of you to contact and ask - I appreciate the details! :)

And now that I'm reading this...less than 3 weeks! So excited!! :)

Ottawa, Canada
posts: 30
reviews: 21
14. Re: Self-Guided Arenal Itinerary

Our itinerary for one day in Lafortuna in this order was a hike at Arenal starting at 8ish...there's a $10 entrance fee to the park and a 5km hike, a loop about half through the rain forest and half over the lava field...sounds short but the lava field is rated as advanced level hiking and it is strenuous and challenging so be prepared...bring water, bug spray and have sturdy boots. We then took a drive part way around the lake, it was gorgeous and we saw howler monkeys...so cool. Then booked Sky Trek for 12:30 which gave us time for a quick lunch in the restaurant. Sky Trek Canopy tour...best zip lining ever!!! About 2 hours. Finished the day off at Tabacon...awesome natural hotsprings...can't say enough good things about it...was great for the now aching muscles :-) 2 hours there late afternoon was plenty, tried out most of the pools and had a swim in the main pool and a drink in the swim up bar and left just before dark and dinner back in town. That was a full day...it's do-able and I have to say did not feel rushed. But that's the limit...

We did the falls on the way out of town the next morning which worked great but again, although only 500M trek down and back up, it was a workout so be prepared! $10 fee...

Ottawa, Canada
posts: 30
reviews: 21
15. Re: Self-Guided Arenal Itinerary

Sorry, one correction to my post..we did the drive part way around the lake the following morning. So on our first full day we did the hike at the lava fields, then zip lining (no hanging bridges just zip lining) and then Tabacon.

Enjoy :-)

16. Re: Self-Guided Arenal Itinerary

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