Add dates
Guanacaste

National parks

Our most recommended Guanacaste National Parks

La Fortuna: Waterfall, Arenal Volcano and Hot Springs Tour

1. La Fortuna: Waterfall, Arenal Volcano and Hot Springs Tour

Escape into the nature of the La Fortuna on a guided hike. Walk by the river and follow a trail to a panoramic viewpoint. Have a delicious lunch at a Maluku Indian village and trek through forest, lava fields, and farmlands before relaxing at a natural hot spring resort with a drink. Be collected at your accommodation and be driven to the beginning of the forest walk. Trek on the easy track along the crystal clear La Fortuna river. En route, hop on a tractor cart uphill to a panoramic viewpoint. Spot the next location from a distance then begin the return walk down a jungle staircase. Halfway down is a high suspension bridge to cross. The trail leads further down the huge canyon, which was shaped by a volcanic mega-eruption. Encounter the spectacular La Fortuna waterfall. Be amazed by the lush vegetation on its 70-meter high walls, the huge volcanic rocks at its foot, and the water splashing down in its massive pool. Bask in its beauty or even take a refreshing dip. Return to the viewpoint then walk down to the little village of the Maluku Indians. Seated in their Palenke (main house), enjoy a rest while listening to an interesting story about their culture, art, and history.  After being active for a few hours, the time has come to relax and enjoy a typical hot lunch. Next to the restaurant is a butterfly garden and frog pond that you can explore until your food is served.  Reenergized, take a 15-minute ride to the park at the foot of the Arenal volcano. Being the trek through the primary forest where you can see huge trees with giant roots. Besides a variety of birds, the forest is host to monkeys, sloths, and coati. Leave the forest and each the highest viewpoint that exists around the volcano and absorb the most spectacular panoramic views of Lake Arenal, the jungle, the valley, the lava fields, and most of all the Arenal that towers over you.  Conclude your tour at the natural hot spring resort. Relax in its soothing warm water for about an hour and enjoy a volcanic mud facial and a complimentary cocktail. Afterward, you will be taken back to your accommodation.

Rincón de la Vieja: One-Day Nature Tour

2. Rincón de la Vieja: One-Day Nature Tour

Experience the natural beauty of Costa Rica on a one-day nature tour in Rincon de la Vieja National Park. Hike the Las Pailas Trail in the park to discover the raw nature and amazing wildlife. With a bilingual naturalist guide, walk the 3.5-kilometer, circular path through the tropical forest to enjoy the best views of the volcano. Walk to the mirador to see the Rincón de la Vieja and Santa María Volcanoes, and beyond to the Pacific Ocean. Trek to a stunning waterfall that descends into a beautiful sky-blue pool. Stop here for a cooling swim, or to enjoy the lovely surroundings.  Afterwards, rejuvenate yourself in the Rio Negro Hot Springs and Mud Baths. Smother your skin in heated volcanic clay, then wash it off in the cold river before jumping back in the hot pools. End your tour with a delicious buffet lunch at La Hacienda Restaurant.

Playa Flamingo: All-Day Chartered Sailboat Trip with Snacks

3. Playa Flamingo: All-Day Chartered Sailboat Trip with Snacks

You are chartering your own private yacht and crew. You will not be crammed aboard with 30-70 other booze cruisers. You will be able to enjoy the day out with only your group on a real sailboat. The Cover-girl, Serendipity, is a classy 50 foot Beneteau Oceanis (she was featured on the cover of Sail Magazine) and is operated by the most experienced, professional and safest crew in the bay - with captains that have sailed the world! You will start the day off by sailing up (or down) the beautiful coastline. There is no set "tour" - each day is different based on the winds, tides and what the ocean is offering that day. And because these charters are private, you will get a say in this course: If you want to sail more, fish more or swim more, just let the captain know. The captain will find an anchorage where you will have the opportunity to swim or snorkel with an experienced guide. All the equipment for fishing and snorkeling will be provided. Being uniquely positioned close to the pristine Santa Rosa National Park, this area of the coastline has been beautifully protected, and it is the crew's intention to appreciate and explore while having a minimal impact on the natural flora and fauna in the area by: - Only promoting environmentally friendly products (reef safe, non-aerosol sunscreen) - Never serving on single use plastic - Using wind energy whenever possible - Snorkeling responsibly and only supporting sustainable fishing - Taking initiative for the marine life (anti-trawling petitions)

La Fortuna Town: Rio Celeste and Tenorio National Park Tour

4. La Fortuna Town: Rio Celeste and Tenorio National Park Tour

Following your pickup from your hotel in La Fortuna Downtown, you will venture to the heart of the Tenorio Volcano. Once having arrived there, you will discover the mystery of the minerals that produce the reaction that causes the river to turn a marvelous light-blue color. You will explore right where the Buena Vista River and Roble River merge, with both rivers originating from the volcano. The colors of these rivers is caused by the different concentrations of minerals. The natural chemicals mix and cause a reaction between the sulfur from the volcano and calcium carbonate from the rain, creating one of the most beautiful attractions in Costa Rica. Later on in your tour, you will be taken to a breathtaking waterfall called the “Bride’s Veil”, which is the highlight of your adventure. You will then be taken to the Tenorio Volcano viewpoint, thermos mineral hot springs, and volcanic mud ponds. At the conclusion of your geothermal experience, you will be returned back to your point of origin in La Fortuna Town.

Tamarindo: Boat Safari at Las Baulas National Park

5. Tamarindo: Boat Safari at Las Baulas National Park

Embark on an adventure and experience the mangrove swamps and bays protected by Marino Las Baulas National Parl. Spend your afternoon exploring on a boat trip.  See frigate birds, brown footed boobies, pelicans, and other waterbirds that are the main attraction. Witness also monkeys, but as conservation takes hold, it is becoming easier to spot ocelots, crocodiles, and anteaters. Find big iguanas and different species of wading birds, amidst the mangroves, orchids, and trees lining the river. Experience Las Baulas that includes in its habitats beach, coral reef, and mangrove, with wildlife from green marine iguanas, bottle-nosed and common dolphins, leatherback sea turtles, sponges, anemones, lobsters, trunkfish, frigate birds, brown footed boobies, to pelicans.  Sail up the waters of Las Baulas National Park, in a 2-hour tour, where you'll be able to watch crocodiles sunning on the banks or swimming alongside the boat while green parrots call from the above and howler monkeys play among the treetops.

Rio Celeste Hike & Sloths Wild Life

6. Rio Celeste Hike & Sloths Wild Life

Hike through the tropical rain forest and discover many picture-perfect sights along the way. Visit “Los Teñideros”, see the volcano's furnace vents, the magnificent Rio Celeste waterfall, and 2 species of sloths at the Sloth Sanctuary. Once at Tenorio Volcano National Park, your guide will give a short introduction, and then the hike starts going through the tropical rain forest, where fauna and flora are plentiful. During the hike, visit “Los Teñideros”, where two streams of crystalline water come together and form the astonishing blue color that gives the river its name. Come by the volcano’s furnace vents that expel gases of extremely high temperatures, and get the chance to take a dip in the natural hot springs. See the spectacular Rio Celeste waterfall. Head to the Sloths Sanctuary, where you will see 2 different species of sloths and wildlife in their natural habitat. The final reward will be an exquisite traditional meal at the end of your journey.

Río Celeste National Park Hike

7. Río Celeste National Park Hike

Once we arrive to the Río Celeste National Park, you may use the facilities to get ready and look at the information booth provided by the Río Celeste National Park. We will then begin a hike through the dense, lush, tropical rainforest that surrounds the Río Celeste National Park. The hike is approximately 3-miles long and considered intermediate. You and your naturalist guide go at your own pace and you'll learn interesting things about the rainforest along the way. We then arrive to "Los Teñíderos" where two rivers come together to form the celestial, turquoise blue water color that gives the waterfall its name "Celeste." We'll return, walking back through the Rio Celeste National Park to the "Ollas" -- or mud baths -- and take a moment to relax in the natural hot springs. For the grand finale, we then walk-on further to see the spectacular Río Celeste waterfall - the perfect place to take photos. We finish off with a delicious lunch at a local restaurant and then head back to La Fortuna. Please note: the Río Celeste waterfall may lose its blue color during rainstorms. Our policy is to advise clients the day of the tour if it is raining in the area and offer the tour for the following day, should clients want to postpone or change to a different tour. No refunds for inclement weather.

Vida Aventura Nature Park Experience

8. Vida Aventura Nature Park Experience

Vida Aventura Nature Park is the perfect combination of adventure and relaxation. Experience adventure and feel your adrenaline rush as you fly over a breathtaking tropical forest canopy on a zip line. As you soar through the air, you will view the incredible sights of the tropical forest along with impressive views of the ancient lava canyons and the magnificent Rincon de la Vieja and Miravalles volcanoes. Horseback ride through a tropical forest, and keep your eyes open for the singular views, and the beautiful wildlife of the area. Cleanse your body and renew your skin with genuine volcanic mud. A difference you will appreciate immediately. After so much excitement and fun, dip into a pool of thermal waters surrounded by the beautiful, ecological park. While you rest and relax, your children can safely enjoy the pool in this fun, family oriented environment. Savor the delicious, traditional Costa Rican cuisine. Taste the natural flavors, of authentic regional products, grown and harvested in the fertile lands of Guanacaste and prepared by the gentle hands of the locals. 

From Tamarindo: Zip-Line and Rafting Full Day Adventure Tour

9. From Tamarindo: Zip-Line and Rafting Full Day Adventure Tour

Kick-start your full day of outdoor thrills bright and early led by your private guide. This small-group tour will give you the opportunity to try your hand at rock climbing, horse riding, water tubing or river rafting, as well as enjoying a canopy tour. Begin your journey either water tubing or rafting down the peaceful waters of the Colorado River, meandering your way through its verdant canyon surrounded by steep sides. Next, enjoy the thrill of zip-lining over the canyon through the course of eight zip-lines that zig and zag across it. If you're feeling up for more, you have the choice to rappel down into the canyon and rock climb back up. Savor traditional local flavors over lunch, taking the opportunity to snap some pictures of the impressive backdrop. Get back on the adventure track, and horse ride along the mighty foothills of the Rincón de la Vieja volcano, making your way to its hot springs. Here, relax in a natural mud bath and ease into the end of your day before being dropped off at your accommodation.

La Fortuna: Rio Celeste Hike

10. La Fortuna: Rio Celeste Hike

After being collected from your accommodation in La Fortuna, you will make your way to Rio Celeste. Rio Celeste is located in one of the most beautiful areas of Costa Rica, and on a clear day, it is possible to receive spectacular views. Upon arrival to the park you will set off on a 7-kilometer hike, which passes by the River Celeste Waterfall, the Tenorio Lookout, the Blue Lagoon (a great place for taking pictures), and Borbollones (little geisers), before you finally arrive to Teñideros.  In this area, mother nature magically mixes the water of two crystal clear streams, changing the water's color to a beautiful bright, light blue (hence the name Rio Celeste, or "Light-Blue River"). After visiting the most beautiful places of this park there is a tough hike back to the park entrance, where you will have a delicious, well-deserved lunch waiting for you.

  • Water activities
  • Adventures
  • Day trips
31 activities found
Sort by:
1 - 16 / 31

Frequently asked questions about Guanacaste National Parks

What are other things to do than National Parks that are worth visiting in Guanacaste?

The other unmissable things to do in Guanacaste are:

Other Sightseeing Options in Guanacaste

Want to discover all there is to do in Guanacaste? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Guanacaste

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 15 reviews

We loved our tour with red lava tours. Mauricio was the perfect guide. We felt a bit indecisive with what to do, because of all the great things to see in La Fortuna, but this tour had it all! With humour and big knowledge about the nature, we learned a lot from him and had the best day! Thank you for that:) We truly recommend this tour. Love from Denmark from Rebecca and Sofie

I had the most amazing day on this tour! Our guide Eric was incredible and went above and beyond to point out interesting plants/animals and highlight historical/scientific facts along the way. It’s a long day but 100% worth it - the waterfall, views of volcano, and hot springs were all immaculate. Highly recommend for solo travelers!

Great tour from start to finish, both tour guides were very informative and spoke great English and Spanish so everyone was included. Highly recommend this tour and Was great value for money.

Awesome trip Mauricio tour guide was amazing I highly recommend this tour and Mauricio!

Great tour, well packed! Our guide Aizek is excelent tour guide!