Costa Rica – Home to 5 Active Volcanoes!

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TravelingMom.comWith over 110 volcanoes some have to be active? For sure, but thankfully only 5 and they are of no major threat. Plus, you can actually see them in full action!

Poas Volcano

The most popular and easily accessible volcano in Costa Rica!



1. Being only 45 minutes from San Jose, it’s become a fun day trip.

2. You can walk right up to the tip of the crater and look in.

3. The hiking trail is an extra easy level so it’s perfect for everyone. Poas Volcano is actually three craters, but the main one is active. As you stand at the rim looking down at the crater you’ll come face to face with one of the most active bubbling volcanic lakes in the world.

Note: The best time to visit is early in the morning, usually by midday the clouds have rolled in and you’ll be lucky to see your hand in front of your face.

Arenal Volcano

The second most popular volcano in Costa Rica and one of the ten most active volcanoes in the world!

To get to Arenal is about a 4 hour drive from San Jose and it is highly recommended to spend anywhere between 1-4 nights here to get the full enjoyment of this amazing place. With non-stop lava flowing show, you’ll be awe-struck with its beauty. But the best part, you can enjoy watching this magical scene while soaking in natural hot springs warmed up by the volcano itself.

Irazu Volcano

So what else is interesting about Irazu, besides being active? For one, it’s the tallest volcano in the country and on a clear day you can see both oceans at once. Two, you can walk right on over to the tip of the crater and look down on the blue-green, sometimes red, mineral lake inside the active volcano. The volcano is also about 45 minutes from San Jose. Plus, you can add a stop over in Cartago and see the famous Basilica where millions of people make a religious pilgrimage each year, in August, and have some of the miracle working magic rub off on you too!

Rincon de la Vieja Volcano

This volcano’s name literally means ‘Corner of the old lady’. As a matter of fact, if you listen to the locals talking about it, they treat the volcano as though it is a live old lady. This is the third most active volcano in Costa Rica and is surrounded by a freshwater lake, waterfalls, hot springs, geysers and boiling mud pools. This is the only place where you can dip your body in a mud pool warmed up by the volcano rich with minerals.

Turrialba Volcano

What’s great about this volcano is that it’s one of those adventure-get-aways. There are no paved roads to the top, so the nature lodges surrounding it have horseback excursions to take you up to the top and have a peak inside. Marina has been living in Central America for over 7 years and her site Travel Experta is all about traveling in Central America. Marina loves to help people plan the perfect vacation to this amazing part of the world! You can sign up for her RSS feed and join the fun on her facebook fan page and follow her on Twitter at @MarinaVillatoro.

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About The Author

Marina Kuperman Villatoro
is CEO of, a travel resource site to inspire families to travel with kids of all ages. She’s been an expat 10+ years in Central America raising 2 boys in a multicultural, trilingual household. We travel all over the world. Needless to say, it’s never boring! So find out where you can eat, stay and play with your kids all around the world.

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