Muddiest day of my life, but also one of the best days of my life! We began 2014 here, with family, traveling and being active in nature! It's beyond beautiful, but not much trail info out there! It's moderate hiking with some strenuous points that are short lived. We went with a 3 yr old child and a 16 yr old with down syndrome, that both walked the whole way, so it's a do-able hike for almost anyone! Naturally, we were slower than most, with children, but the hike was about 5 hours for us, with us eating lunch and taking in the scenery.
You begin after paying at the entrance, and the first part is paved (which will fool you into thinking it's a piece of cake). Once the path stops its all mud, rocks, and stream crossing FUN hiking! It's one way in/one way out, once you arrive at the waterfall, the trail splits in two. Sort of like a "Y" pattern, not a loop trail as many sites state! Either go left, and down the steps (over 400 steps), to see the waterfall, or go right to continue towards the lookout point, lagoon, hot springs, and the point where the water turns blue (in that order!). We saved the waterfall for last per my family's suggestion who have been before, and that was a GOOD choice b/c those steps will kick your tail!!! You will pass over 3 bridges on the longer path, very picturesque! Once you hit the point where the water turns blue, it's the end of the road and you turn around and head back to where you came from! Passing the bridges, hot springs, lagoon, and lookout once more, until back at the waterfall intersection!
Also, my family had visited a couple years prior and stated there used to be more hot springs, now you only see one area. The trail used to continue further to more, but people were not respecting the forest so they closed the trail down, so you can no longer get to those areas. The one hot spring you pass, would be very awkward to swim in as it RIGHT on the main path and people stop to take pics and feel the water temp. So not a relaxing haven to swim, anymore. PLUS the waterfall is blocked off now too. I'm sure there are side trails to go chomping thru the rainforest to get to it, however, it is not marked or encouraged. We saw no one down in the water.
Beautiful, worth every minute!!
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