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“Best by far in the area and one of the best in Costa Rica” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Arenal Natura Ecological Park

Arenal Natura Ecological Park
Book In Advance
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$39.00*
and up
Afternoon Tour to Arenal Observatory Lodge and Natural Hot Springs River
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: At Arenal Natura Ecological Park you will experience the natural world in a whole new way, where beautiful frogs, birds, reptiles, and their natural habitats will have the starring role. Arenal Natura is a private Biological Station, where we are concerned at the conservation of habitats, as well as reserach and reproduction of amphibians and reptiles, many of these listed as endangered species by CITES. We are located in a section of the tropical rainforest, at the base of the Arenal Volcano, home to a large quantity of species which, with the help of our guides, will give you a new way to view and enjoy these impressive, complex worlds.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Fairfax, Virginia
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Best by far in the area and one of the best in Costa Rica”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 14, 2013

I was on a site inspection as part of my travel business and tour this and other attractions in the area and Costa Rica. This is well worth the trip and one of the best sites of its type I have been too! Much more than just their butterflies, of which they are registered and certified by Costa Rica bodies, but also a bio reserve and frog reproduction facility. Great nature trail with Howler Monkey family usually present, great views of the Volcano along their trails as well as being part of the cloud forest. Not the easiest to get to but well worth it. Very knowledgeable and helpful staff that will explain everything and anything about their reserve and what they are doing in species preservation and conservation. Skip the one in down town La Fortuna, a major dissapointment.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Peter H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ronald F, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Arenal Natura Ecological Park, responded to this review, September 14, 2015
Wow! Great!
Thank you.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Coconut Creek, Florida
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Great!!!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 21, 2013

Long and relaxing walk thru a beautiful; ecological park. Beautiful view of the Arenal Volcano. A must see!!!

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Sandra A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ronald F, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Arenal Natura Ecological Park, responded to this review, September 14, 2015
You are awesome!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Key Largo, Florida
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Definitely worth a visit - went twice!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 19, 2013

My girlfriend and I absolutely loved this place. We did the night hike the first night we arrived in the Arenal area. Almost immediately we spotted some blue jeans and green jeans strawberry poison dart frogs in the wild. We walked for awhile and Joseph (excellent tour guide) pointed out a lot of different frogs, toads, ants, bugs, butterflies (re: moths). We got to see the red-eyed tree frog as well, in the (semi) wild as well. After the night hike portion was over, he took us through all of the caged wildlife portions of the site, showing us crocs, snakes, caymans, toads, frogs, etc., all at night. The frogs were especially lively at this time.

We enjoyed the experience so much, we went back a day later (in the daytime) just to walk through again, and they let us in at half price! We again had Joseph lead the way, and in the day you can really see the vastness of the reserve, more ants (huge leafcutter nests) , and better views of the crocs, snakes, and caymans. After a guided portion, they let us roam free throughout the park checking out whatever we would like for as long as we liked. There were some birds in the trees throughout the park, but there is no aviary on site, and seeing exotic birds is more of a game of chance here.

I definitely recommend this place for the amount of wildlife you will see, ok entry fee, great tour guide, and the amount you will learn. If you are staying at Volcano Lodge, this park is literally next door and about a 3 minute walk from the front desk.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Buck W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ronald F, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Arenal Natura Ecological Park, responded to this review, September 14, 2015
Wow! You are awesome.
Thank you.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Raleigh, North Carolina
Level Contributor
13 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Nice - Nothing Extraordinary”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 15, 2013

We did a night walking tour here upon arriving in the Arenal / La Fortuna area. It was actually the very first activity that we did upon making it to Costa Rica.

The excursion included a nice nighttime walk through the park looking for wildlife. Much time was spent looking off-path, trying to find the animals. This is a very difficult task. It would be impossible if we didn't have a guide. In our case we got to see some frogs (some colorful ones - but more of the garden 'bullfrog' variety) and a snake.

Tour guide was nice, and the overall activity was 'pleasant' - but we certainly didn't feel that it was a 'must do'

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank Robert K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ronald F, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Arenal Natura Ecological Park, responded to this review, September 16, 2015
Google Translation
Muchas gracias!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
21 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Night hike in a safe setting”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 6, 2013

This was a last minute decision, since we arrived at 6pm and Natura was around the corner from our hotel. They accomodated us by sending us out with a guide even though we missed the group departure.

This is a "zoo" and conservatory type setting, which makes sense given many of the snakes, frogs and toads on display are rare to find when you are out in the wild, are found in different parts of Cost Rica and some are extremely poisonous. The terrariums were spacious and much care is given to these animals. There is also an uncaged frog area where we were able to spend a good hour looking for free roaming frogs with flashlights. We saw several species and even a huge toad in the middle of the walkway!

We also saw leaf ants hard at work, an armandillo running through the bushes and some very interesting insects.

The crocs and caiman were probably the only thing I was not a fan of since they were in enclosures. (We saw wild crocs near Jaco and caimans near Puerto Viejo.)

This was a fun night activity.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank TravelEatPlayDo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ronald F, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Arenal Natura Ecological Park, responded to this review, September 16, 2015
Thank you very much for your honest comment.
Arenal Natura is a private Biological Station where we are concerned in the preservation of habitats and the reproduction of amphibians and reptiles to be released in nature. We also work as a rescue center for some animals.
Thanks a lot!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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