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Arenal Volcano and Tabacón Hot Springs Day Trip from San Jose

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San José, Costa Rica

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Free Cancellation
up to 24 hours in advance
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icon12 to 16 hours  (Approx.)
Hotel pickup offered
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English and 1 more
Good for avoiding crowds

Keeping you safe during COVID-19
What you can expect during your visit
Face masks required for travelers in public areas
Face masks required for guides in public areas
Face masks provided for travelers
Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
Social distancing enforced throughout experience
Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
Gear/equipment sanitized between use
Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
Guides required to regularly wash hands
Regular temperature checks for staff
Temperature checks for travelers upon arrival
Paid stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
Contactless payments for gratuities and add-ons
More questions?
(888) 651-9785

Overview

Find your bliss with a classic Costa Rican experience that combines a seismic dose of adventure and relaxation! On this full-day trip from San Jose, visit the very active Arenal Volcano and explore its base with a guided nature hike. Then, unwind with a soak in a variety of geothermal pools at the luxurious Tabacón hot springs. The tour also includes a stop at the artisan town of Sarchí, plus delicious lunch and dinner.
  • Day trip from San Jose to Arenal Volcano and the Tabacón hot springs
  • Try out all the thermal pools, from warm to hot to really hot, at Tabacón Grand Spa Thermal Resort
  • Lunch and dinner included
  • Small-group tour limited to 20 people

Why Travelers Choose This Tour

Unlike on a trekking tour, this excursion lets you enjoy Arenal Volcano without having to hike up its steep slopes.
Hotel pickup and drop-off (selected hotels only)
Transport by air-conditioned minivan
Professional guide
Lunch
Dinner
Gratuities
Additional food and drinks

Departure Point

San José Province, San José, Costa Rica

Traveler pickup is offered
On the arrival at the hotel the tour guide is going to ask in the reception of the hotel for the client

Departure Time

8:00 AM

Return Details

Returns to original departure point
Discover why so many visitors flock to Arenal to relax and soak up the majestic scenery. Your full-day tour begins with early morning pickup at your San Jose hotel in a comfortable minivan. Stop briefly in the artisan town of Sarchí, where craftspeople have been making traditional, brightly-painted wooden oxcarts for generations. 

Continue on to the town of La Fortuna, where you enjoy a typical Costa Rican lunch at a local restaurant with stellar views of the nearby Arenal Volcano. Next, get ready for adventure as you head to Arenal Volcano National Park for a hike around the base of the volcanic cone. Trek along a trail system known as Mirador Arenal 1968, named for the last year that the volcano experienced a major eruption. 

Arenal is considered one of the most active volcanoes in the Western Hemisphere and emits a steady stream of smoke and lava from its sputtering crater. Rest assured that trails are carefully screened for visitor safety. Throughout your hike, take in different perspectives of the majestic peak and learn about the area’s geologic history. 

Next, it’s time to unwind at the renowned Tabacón hot springs and resort. Spend the afternoon soaking in natural thermal pools that range from 77 to 102°F (25 to 38°C). Find small secluded pools and larger lagoons with cascading waterfalls, all surrounded by lush tropical scenery. Enjoy ample leisure time at the spa.

When it’s time for dinner, enjoy a tasty buffet dinner at the resort and soak up the romantic atmosphere of steam rising from the pools and views of the nearby volcano under a starry sky. Sit back and relax into your newfound bliss on the return drive to San Jose, where you are dropped off back at your hotel.
Itinerary
Stop At:  
La Carreta
after a minivan pickup from your hotel in San Jose, your day trip begins with the 35-minute drive northwest to Sarchí, a Central Valley town famous for its crafts, particularly wood and leather furniture and decorated oxcarts. Pick up a souvenir or two from a local artisan before making the 2.5-hour drive further north to the town of La Fortuna, which sits below Arenal and offers an unobstructed view of the volcán on clear days.
Duration: 1 hour 
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
Arenal Volcano
On arrival in La Fortuna, head to a local restaurant for a typical Costa Rican lunch of rice, beans, chicken or steak, and plantains, accompanied by a great view of Arenal. Then, continue your tour about 20 minutes down the road to Mirador Arenal 1968, a trail system on the edge of Arenal Volcano National Park (Parque Nacional Volcán Arenal) named for the 1968 eruption. Walk along the paths to find the best photo spots of the volcano and Lake Arenal (Lago Arenal), and watch for glimpses of bright orange lava flowing down the volcano.
Duration: 2 hours 
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
Tabacon Hot Springs
officially Tabacón Grand Spa Thermal Resort — one of Costa Rica’s biggest and most luxurious hot springs resorts. Enjoy roughly 3.5 hours here to soak in the various pools, which range in temperature from 77 to 102°F (25 to 38°C). The resort is beautifully landscaped with waterfalls and lush vegetation and offers many ways to relax, from secluded pools to a swim-up bar (drinks at your own expense), so sit back and enjoy it until dinner is served. The resort’s buffet dinner lasts about 30 minutes and offers a selection of Costa Rican cuisine, similar to lunch.
Duration: 4 hours 
Admission Ticket Included
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • A minimum of two passengers is required for the tour to commence. There is a possibility of cancellation after confirmation if there are not enough passengers to meet requirements. In the event of this occurring, you will be offered an alternative or full refund
  • Please advise any specific dietary requirements at time of booking
  • It is recommended that you wear light clothing, comfortable shoes and bring a bathing suit and towel
  • May be operated by a multi-lingual guide
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Transportation is wheelchair accessible
  • Surfaces are wheelchair accessible
  • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 15 travelers
  • OPERATED BY Gray Line Tours Costa Rica

For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.

  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.

Learn more about cancellations.

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What is the policy on face masks and attendee health during Arenal Volcano and Tabacón Hot Springs Day Trip from San Jose?
A:
The policies on face masks and attendee health are:

  • Face masks required for travelers in public areas
  • Face masks required for guides in public areas
  • Face masks provided for travelers
  • Temperature checks for travelers upon arrival
See all safety measures taken by Arenal Volcano and Tabacón Hot Springs Day Trip from San Jose.
Q:
What is the policy on sanitization during Arenal Volcano and Tabacón Hot Springs Day Trip from San Jose?
A:
The policies on sanitization are:

  • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
  • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
  • Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
See all safety measures taken by Arenal Volcano and Tabacón Hot Springs Day Trip from San Jose.
Q:
What is the social distancing policy during Arenal Volcano and Tabacón Hot Springs Day Trip from San Jose?
A:
The policies on social distancing are:

  • Social distancing enforced throughout experience
  • Contactless payments for gratuities and add-ons
See all safety measures taken by Arenal Volcano and Tabacón Hot Springs Day Trip from San Jose.
Q:
What measures are being taken to ensure staff health & safety during Arenal Volcano and Tabacón Hot Springs Day Trip from San Jose?
A:
The policies on staff health & safety are:

  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
  • Regular temperature checks for staff
  • Paid stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
See all safety measures taken by Arenal Volcano and Tabacón Hot Springs Day Trip from San Jose.

Traveler Photos

Traveler Tips


  • "Don't forget your bathing suit and bring flip flops or water shoes for the hot springs since some of the pools have uneven ground." See review
  • "It's a long trip but it's so worth it especially if you don't have the time to visit the place on your own, which needs several days unless you have a private vehicle." See review
  • "If you do not do well in cars with lots of turns, be prepared to take precautions such as motion sickness bracelets or pills." See review

Reviews

4.5
star-4.5
190 Reviews
Reviews by Viator travelers
Showing 1-10 of 190 reviews
star-5
Volcano and hot springs
Adrian_G
, Mar 2020
Long minibus trip with 18 others to the volcano park,but got lots of good commentary en route(only problem was the guide had to do the commentary in English and Spanish,as half the passengers were Spanish speakers,and it was sometimes hard to follow him). Had good stops-at a local handcraft place,where we could alos taste local coffee and sugarcane spirits(and buy them);and at a lunch spot,and a toilet stop at a big Service Station. A short walk got us good views of the Arenal volcano,then we spent 3 hours at a lovely hot springs,with beautiful tropical gardens,followed by cocktails by the pool,then a delicious buffet dinner before the 3n hour trip back to our hotels. A long day,but well worth it!
HelpfulHelpful
star-5
Wonderful tour guide. Very organised Hot Springs were one of the best experiences of my life! Food was awesome. Highly
Glen_B
, Feb 2020
Tour guide was great! Very organized. The hot springs were one of the best experiences I've had! Food was a 10!
HelpfulHelpful
star-4
Not bad
SChoice
, Feb 2020
Good Tour Operator. But bust stops in the middle in nowhere for sort of coffee and shop — completely wast of time. Lunch can be better for the price of the tour. The hot spring was nice.
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star-5
Arenal Tabacon Hot Springs
clazonly
, Feb 2020
Awesome experience. All what’s important to me covered! Emailed confirmed trip, follow up confirmed location & time. Abundance of good food. Bathroom stops clean! Mario & Walton personal & friendly. Well organized!!!
icon Response from Host , Feb 2020
Hello! Greetings from Gray Line Costa Rica. Thanks for taking the time to share your feedback with us! We hope you visit us again soon!
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star-3
Not the best
insoonfelch
, Jan 2020
The guide did not explain at all on way to the volcano. Tourists/we were kept asked, explain to us. Unlike the other guide, they did not stop once for the scenic area until we asked them...
icon Response from Host , Feb 2020
Dear insoonfelch, thank you for letting us know about this. Your honest feedback helps us get better.
HelpfulHelpful
star-3
Nice trip but could be planned much better!
moiraciardi
, Jan 2020
Overall, the idea of the trip is good! We left early morning to collect all the people and move to Arenal. We made two stops, to have a quick look to one square with a nice church and historical chariot (that was quick and nice) and another one at souvenir place (not needed and took 30 min of time). The lunch was nice but the tour to Arenal was a simple stop at the sightseeing spot. I would suggest adding at least an easy walk in one of the tracks around the vulcan. The hot springs were very beautiful and dinner included as well, but instead of 4 hrs we could stay less and enjoy more a walk around Arenal. I did not like the guide of the day, though. He was just moving us around under pressure. No passion, no knowledge shared, just schedules (I did a lot of daily trips from San Jose and it was the 1st time it happened).
icon Response from Host , Jan 2020
Dear moiraciardi, thank you for letting us know about this. Your feedback helps us get better. We are looking into this issue and hope to resolve it promptly and accurately.
HelpfulHelpful
star-4
Excellent experience
catherinefaro7
, Jan 2020
Honestly was absoluetly fantastic - i was interested in it obviously for the hot springs/arenal volcano, but we ended up stopping in another town to shop and see something unrelated. On one hand it was knowledge i later was grategul to have acquired but on the other just added a lot more time to the trip that i would have probably cut out. I felt a bit like a sheep in the tourit herd... But overall great deal for the money and i dont think i need to share how absoluetly AMAZING and incredible the natural beauty is ugh!!!!!!
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star-4
Volcano visit
Philip C
, Dec 2019
Long time on the bus. View of the volcano is quick. Tabucon hot springs was really good and a wonderful experience including the dinner.
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star-5
Amazing Arenal Experience
cjfeeny
, Dec 2019
Great trip to Arenal volcano and Tabacon Hot Springs! The tour guide and driver were kind and informative. The sights were beautiful and the hot springs were so luxurious. Both me and my friend had a great time!
icon Response from Host , Dec 2019
Dear cjfeeny! Thank you so much for taking the time to leave us this amazing review.
HelpfulHelpful
star-4
Day trip to Arenal Volcano
roverdoc2019
, Nov 2019
Great comfortable ride, stops and Excellent Hot springs. The guide Hugo is an excellent bilingual guide. Overall great value for an all day trip.
icon Response from Host , Nov 2019
Dear roverdoc2019, thanks for sharing your review with us and your good comments for our guide Hugo! We hope to see you on your next visit!
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Product code: 3171TABACON

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