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Northern Region (Arenal & Monteverde)

This is one of those "gotta see" type of places. Here you can lounge in the natural volcanic hot springs at the base of Arenal Volcano while enjoying a boiling lava show (when it's not cloudy) of the most active volcano in Costa Rica and one of the ten most active in the world.

Then you can head over to nearby Monteverde either by car, horseback or ATV, where the most privately protected areas in Costa Rica are found. Arenal Volcano Here you'll encounter cloud forests and plethora of living museums and canopy tours. No other place in Costa Rica will offer you as much plant and wildlife biodiversity as the cloud forests and rich volcanic soils of this region.

Where is It?

From the border of Nicaragua south to the Arenal Volcano including Monteverde, La Fortuna, the Arenal Volcano and Cano Negro Wildlife Refuge, east to the Caribbean side of the Tilaran mountain range, and west to the base of the Guanacaste mountain range, and all of the Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui area.

How's the Weather?

Warm and humid in lowlands and cool and breezy in the mountains

Average Temperatures: Monteverde: 65°F with 75% humidity

Arenal Area: mid 80’s with 75% to 85% humidity (more humid during rainy season)

Hot Spots!

Arenal Volcano / La Fortuna


Base yourself in the town of La Fortuna where the active Arenal Volcano puts on a lava show just for you (when there's no cloud coverage). Several canopy tours are located here, along with hanging bridges, naturally heated thermal springs and plenty of trails for hiking and wildlife watching. La Fortuna's myriad of activities can keep visitors busy for a week or more!

  • Canopy Tours
  • Hiking and bird watching at Arenal's Hanging Bridges
  • Soaking in natural volcano-heated hot springs
  • Windsurfing on Arenal Lake
  • Fishing on Arenal Lake
  • Cano Negro Wildlife Refuge: A rich wetland ecosystem just waiting to be explored

 Contact Us for more info



Monteverde is a paradise of majestic greenery, protecting eight different life zones. The area is best known for its rich biodiversity in the cloud forests, living museums, canopy tours and Spanish schools. It presents views of the Gulf of Nicoya and of Arenal Volcano. Bring a jacket and long pants, because this high mountain village offers a break from the heat of the nearby beaches and lowlands. Some local folks actually own down vests!

  • Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve: the largest privately owned reserve
  • Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve
  • Spanish Schools
  • Living Museums
  • Incredible wildlife viewing with more than 100 species of mammals, 400 species of birds including 30 species of hummingbirds, 5000 species of moths, 2500 species of plants and over 500 species of orchids.
  • Canopy Tours: Zip Lines, Aerial Trams and Hanging Bridges


Green Parrot

Officially called Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui, this is a small river-based community sporting class I-IV rapids on the Sarapiqui and Puerto Viejo Rivers. These rivers not only give you an adrenaline rush, but a glimpse at amazing wildlife while on floating safari tours.

Recently becoming a popular tourist destination,  the area is rich in culture, agriculture and adventure. Fishing, chocolate tours, canopy tours and more...the Sarapiqui area is one not to be missed.

  • World famous whitewater rafting
  • Safari float tours on the Sarapiqui river
  • La Selva Biological Station: explore pristine forests and eco-volunteer
  • Hacienda Pozo Azul

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In the Northern Region, you this:

Tree Frog Glass

Museums & Gardens

  • Arenal Botanical Gardens
  • Art Galleries
  • Living Museums: Ranarium, Serpentarium, Butterfly Gardens, Hummingbird Galleries & Insect Museum
  • Orchid
  • Macadamia Nut Farm - YUM!
  • Monteverde Cheese Factory
  • Orchid Garden

Popular Parks & Reserves


  • Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve
  • Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve
  • Children's Eternal Cloud Forest

Arenal / La Fortuna

  • Arenal Hanging Bridges & Nature Reserve
  • Hanging-Bridge
  • Cano Negro Wildlife Refuge
  • Arenal Volcano National Park

Sarapiqui Area

  • La Selva Biological Station
  • La Tirimbina Rainforest Center

Other Protected Areas

Alberto Manuel Brenes Biological Reserve, Arenal Monteverde Protected Zone, Arenal Volcano Emergency Forest Reserve, Curi Cancha Wildlife Refuge, Cerro El Jardin Forest Reserve, Curena Forest Reserve, Juan Castro Blanco National Park, Lacustrino de Tamborcito Wetlands, Laguna Maquenque Wetlands, Corredor Fronterizo Wildlife Refuge


Hot Springs & Mud Baths

  • Several Hot Spring Resorts
  • Contact Us for more info


  • La Fortuna Waterfall
  • San Luis Waterfalls, Monteverde

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In the Northern Region, you this:

Nature Activities

  • Bird and Wildlife Spying

Adventure & Recreational Activities

  • ATV Tours
  • Canopy Tours: Aerial Trams, Hanging Bridges & Zip Lines
  • Arenal-Hanging-Bridges-Trail
  • Bungee Jumping
  • Canoeing & Kayaking
  • Canyoning (waterfall rappelling)
  • Caving
  • Freshwater Fishing
  • Hiking
  • Horseback Riding
  • Hot springs
  • Mountain Biking
  • Rafting & Tubing
  • Safari Floats
  • Study Spanish
  • Arenal-lake
  • Whitewater Rafting
  • Windsurfing

Edible Tours:

  • Coffee Plantation Tours
  • Chocolate / Cacao Tours
  • Macadamia Nut Farm Tours

Cities Less Traveled:

  • Penas Blancas
  • Tenorio
  • Tilaran
  • Arenal -La-Fortuna -Waterfall
  • Upala
  • San Carlos (Ciudad Quesada)
  • Toro

Read About Other Regions:

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