Positioned within Costa Rica’s fertile northern lowlands, the Arenal Volcano is an unavoidable presence while traveling within this part of the country. It is tall and imposing and has a reputation that precedes itself. Arenal’s perfectly symmetrical shape makes it a sightseer’s dream, while its abundance of outdoor activities makes it an easy place to check things off your “must-do in Costa Rica” list.
Until 2010, it was Costa Rica’s most active volcano. Much to the enjoyment of its visitors, Arenal spewed enormous amounts of lava, gas and ash on a regular basis. That eruptive cycle – which began with the infamous eruption of 1968 – ended recently. In October 2010, Arenal entered into an indeterminate resting phase. For the time being, visitors will be unable to watch the much-loved explosions, although that could change within a matter of months or years. Travelers to Arenal will still enjoy its bountiful sights, sounds and activities— there are mountains to be hiked, lakes to be fished and rivers to be floated. As one of the country’s most scenic and accessible areas, it is a requisite stop on any tour of Costa Rica.