Arenal Observatory

Arenal Observatory LodgeArenal Volcano in north centralCosta Rica erupted for the first time in 1968 and has been continuously active ever since; it has been the object of intense observation over the past 25 years. The Arenal Observatory Lodge was built in 1987 as a research station for scientist from the Smithsonian Institute and Universidad Nacional deCosta Rica. Located in the base of Volcano and overlooking Lake Arenal, it is ideally situated for observing this active giant. The frequency and intensity of the eruptions, coupled with the Observatory Lodge's "next door" proximity for make for a truly spectacular natural history experience. At night the lava and the ejection of glowing rocks provides views with an impressive natural fireworks display.

Bird watching is excellent here and there is easy walking on the farm roads and trails. Local guides take visitors daily through forest to the lava flows and to nearby waterfall. Longer hikes to Cerro Chato, and extinct volcano whose crater is now a small lake. Horses are available for exploring on horseback.

Arenal Observatory LodgeThe twenty-four rooms, all with private baths are spacious and comfortable.

The dinning room, in the Main Lodge, offers a wide variety of excellent cuisine featuring the fruits, fresh produce, beef, beans, rice and abundant salads that are the traditional fare ofCosta Rica.

For over twenty-five years, seismologist from the Smithsonian Institute and The National University ofCosta Rica have been intensely monitoring Arenal. Now you can share in the excitement.

On a cloudless night from your secure vantage point, you can watch a magnificent display of fireworks on a cosmic scale as the rumbling Arenal Volcano explodes massive plumes of mote fire high into the sky.

Arenal VolcanoIn the counterpoint to the primal power of the one of the word's great wonders, you will relax and enjoy the refreshing ambiance of the working farm around you; 860 fertile acres, including 80 acres of Macadamia and 185 acre of reforestation project, planted in Honduran Pine and Eucalyptus, all surrounded by the tropical splendor of the newly-created Arenal National Park.

Birdwatching is extraordinary, offering sightings of a wide variety of rare species such as the three-wattled bellbird and the ever rare bare-necked umbrellabird. Easily traversed forews trails and roads, the spectacular beauty of crater, lakes and waterfalls, the beauty of birds and butterflies make your outing one you will always treasure.

In addition one day and overnight tours are available from the Lodge to the Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge; an evening visit to the hot springs at Tabacón; the Venado Limestone Caverns, the Monteverde Cloud Forest and Guanacaste's beaches and resort areas.



Be sure to bring your passport, personal first aid kit, a boot flashlight, camera with films: ASA 100 for open areas and ASA 400 for the forest, binoculars, pocket knife, repellent, sun hat, sun block, strong shoes or boots with good traction, long pants, short pants, light shirts or t-shirts.



Arenal Volcano's LakeThe new Observatory Superior Block contains a covered viewing deck, it has 4 rooms, each with private hot water bath and one double bed, each have an excellent and direct view of the volcano (N. 27-30).

The new Smithsonian Block contains a viewing deck, conference room and 10 rooms with private hot water bath, each with one double bed and one single bed. These superior rooms will each have a excellent, direct view of the volcano (N 16-26).

The current Observatory Block has 9 standard rooms (N. 1-9) each with private hot water bath. Two rooms (N 7-9) have direct views of the volcano. The main dining room is located here.

La Casona is the original family converted to a capacity of guests. It is located approx. 500 meters from the principal Lodge. It contains 5 room (N 11-12-14-16) which share 2 hot water baths and a common sitting area with fireplace. From the front porch guests have an excellent view of the volcano and the lake.

The Lodge has a total of 28 rooms.

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