La Fortuna/Arenal Travel Guide

La Fortuna/Arenal Summary


  • Gateway to Arenal, one of the country's most active volcanoes
  • Great windsurfing on Lake Arenal
  • Beautiful landscape and breathtaking cloud forests


  • Unpredictable weather and seasonal rains
  • Arenal Volcano is usually hidden behind clouds
  • Difficult to spot local wildlife

What It's Like

This area in Northern Costa Rica is home to one of the country’s most active volcanoes, Arenal, and Lake Arenal, the top windsurfing spot in the region. There is a whole industry built around eco-tourism and outdoor activities here, and many hotels are small and hidden away amid lush rainforests.

Where to Stay

The actual town of La Fortuna is home to a number of budget accommodations, but for lush foliage and the best volcano views, you'll want to stay off of the road west of the main town, toward the lake.


View all La Fortuna/Arenal Hotels


Languages: Spanish
Airports: Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO)
Liberia International Airport (LIR)
Peak: December - April (dry season), Easter week
Off-Peak: May - November
Visa: No
Vaccines: No, though some countries require proof of yellow fever vaccination
Currency: Colon, but US dollars are widely accepted
Electricity: 120 V, 60 Hz
Tipping: Not required for taxis; automatically included in the bill at most restaurants

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