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“wonderful adventure!”
Review of Venado Caves

Venado Caves
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Venado Caves Underground Experience from La Fortuna
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Reviewed December 6, 2013

This is a great cave. Loved the experience. I had been with my 10 year old son. He enjoyed it too. I was apprehensive before going in this, but it wasn't difficult at all. I had been through a tour group and our guide was very experienced and great (booked through our hotel Volcano Lodge, so don't remember the tour group and guide name)

The birth canal mentioned in many of the reviews is very easy. It is a very short distance. What was surprising and a bit difficult was the climb up the 15ft wall at the end of the birth canal. The walk, swim (not swim actually but crawling in the water), going through the water falls was awesome. The guide told where were the deep points were, to avoid. A photographer accompanied us and the 20$ picture CD was worth it. The bathroom facilities to change/shower were good. If you are wearing crocs or any water proof sandals, you don't have to use their boots. At the end of the tour we were served with light drinks and yummy fruits.

Here is an important note to read if you plan to drive there on your own:
Before going in the tour, we had tried going there on our own 2 days prior. Our GPS took us on a shortest route(never taken by an tour group or locals. This goes ahead of springs resort, which is opp direction to the normal direction taken), through unpaved, treacherous, winding roads up the mountain, through a river...it was really horrifying white knuckle moments of drive in the heavy downpour. We realized mid way that our non 4 wheel drive wouldn't make it...it was totally deserted....no one in sight and decided to return. Unfortunately the car couldn't make it back on a particular section and midway slid down the mountain since the road was all slush and pebbles...we had an unfortunate accident. Even the police couldn't make it to the point we had gone. So please ask before you drive. If you have a 4 wheel drive, you might be able to do it...but everyone we asked later told us that no one uses that road and it is not listed on any printed maps.

3  Thank ttaf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed November 25, 2013 via mobile

Currently in Arenal wanted to do something different. I came across venado caves and having never spelunked it seemed interesting. After viewing photos on Google and trip advisor I was also scared. I contacted some tripadvisor members for their advice and they were all helpful describing the experience (thank you!). Reluctant still, my friend and I drove to venado today. We were greeted by Victor who outfitted us with a helmet and big rubber boots. We walked down to the cave and I'm so happy I didn't back out! What an amazing experience! Our guide Victor was very nice and funny setting my fears aside. He took us into the cave, helped us on a segment of high drops (about 12' with footing) en route to the "birth canal" by letting us step on his shoulder and hands. He also snapped great photos of us. I can honestly tell you now having done venado and happy I did it - it's not scary. It is dark but a flashlight in addition to your helmet light helps greatly. You will see bats, scorpion spiders, tarantulas and maybe a frog. They are more afraid of you and will run away. We went into 4 chambers, each stunning with limestone, coral, calcium. You will get wet. You will duck through a short segment of subterranean river into the 3rd chamber and encounter waterfalls - magnificent! Your head and chest will be above water. Now - for those claustrophobic with a fear of heights like me...the only part that was a challenge but not very challenging at all - the second chamber - that has a rather tall drop (you'll need a boost if you're short like me at 5'2") and the "birth canal". Victor went first and helped me on the other side getting down. From there there's the "birth canal" it is simply a narrow hole you crawl through. You're not crawling for long in fact as soon as you stick an arm through you're on the other side. That's it! Then you pop out right where you started. If you must bypass this you can but I'm telling you from my own experience it was awesome. That is the only time during the 2 hour underground hike you'll encounter that and then you can say you did it! The rest is mostly standing erect walking, a couple narrow passages you walk though sideways and a couple areas where you crouch/duck (or if you need to crawl). Great experice, easy to get to from Fortuna and $23 for a private, easy going guide who will explain details about the cave and help you along as opposed to a $69 tour. Ask for Victor you'll have a great time and lots of laughs!

3  Thank DigsInNY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 6, 2013

My friend wanted to do the cave, I was indifferent. I thought we would just walk in, look around at the rocks, and leave. Boy was I wrong! This trip was amazing, climbing through and exploring the cave. It was just me & my friend with the guide, so it was a great experience. The guide even took my personal camera and took pictures of us, for us, climbing through the rocks and wading through the water. If you're terrified of bats (like me) you just need to make it through the entrance (and don't look up!) and then you'll be bat-free. If you're scared of small spaces this probably isn't for you.

1  Thank eephus19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 2, 2013

My husband and I just returned from our first trip to Cost Rica. If you are in La Fortuna, Venado Caves is an absolute must! We booked the tour through our hotel for $75/pp. This includes transportation, guide, and equipment. Edwin was our guide and since it was wet season, we ended up on a private tour with just the two of us and him. Climbing through the caves was such an awesome experience! We saw crickets, scorpion spiders, and tons of bats. I'm not fond of bugs or bats, but they don't bother you. The water level was also great with enough for a nice waterfall inside the cave.

Thank scao
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 27, 2013

I like the caves
The road was nice and my family and I enjoy learning about the conmposition of the caves.

Thank Gerardo M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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