Costa Rica is a land of volcanoes, with seven major ones looming over different parts of the country. Arenal, where you’ll head this morning, is about 55 miles northwest of San José, and rises to a height of 5,358 feet. It has been dormant since 2010.
You’ll start your morning in Arenal Volcano National Park
in thrilling fashion—with a rafting trip down the Sarapiquí River. The rapids range from class I to class III (III being intermediate rapids). You’ll be accompanied by guides ready to navigate you through any difficult stretches. If you’d rather opt for an easier morning, choose to join a gentle float trip instead (advanced notice is required).
The river is of historical significance, having been used in the Filibuster War of 1856, between Nicaragua and its neighbors, to transport supplies and troops. Today it is a route through the low-lying rain forest along its banks. You may spot monkeys, sloths, and turtles while hummingbirds, woodpeckers, toucans, and other birds fly overhead.
You’ll then dry off before a lunch in a stunning setting in the Sarapiquí river valley.
Afterwards, continue on to your hotel for the night, either the Arenal Kioro Suites & Spa or the Tilajari Hotel Resort. The Arenal Kioro has 53 suites on 27 acres of land, crossed by two mountain streams. Suites here boast panoramic views of Arenal, sitting majestically nearby.
Both have restaurants with views of Arenal, which you’ll be able to admire over dinner tonight.