Arenal Volcano and Tabacón Hot Springs Day Trip from San Jose

Province of Alajuela, Costa Rica

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13 hours (Approx.)
Mobile ticket
Offered in: English and 1 more


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
  • Shop for locally made wood and leather crafts in the town of Sarchí
  • Enjoy views of Arenal while you eat lunch in La Fortuna
  • Look for lava, take photos of the volcano and admire Lake Arenal at Arenal 1968
  • 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.

Inclusions & Exclusions


  • Hotel pickup and drop-off (selected hotels only)
  • Transport by air-conditioned minivan
  • Professional guide
  • Lunch
  • Dinner - Buffet dinner
  • Entry/Admission - Tabacon Hot Springs


  • Gratuities
  • Additional food and drinks

Departure & Return

Departure Point

Your select San Jose hotel

Departure Time

8:00 AM

Return Details

Returns to original departure point

What To Expect

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. After a 35-minute drive, stop briefly in the artisan town of Sarchí, where craftspeople have been making traditional, brightly-painted wooden oxcarts for generations. 
Continue on another 2.5 hours to the town of La Fortuna, where you’ll 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. You’ll 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). You’ll find small secluded pools and larger lagoons with cascading waterfalls, all surrounded by lush tropical scenery. Enjoy about 3.5 hours of 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’ll be dropped off back at your hotel.

Additional Info

  • 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

Cancellation Policy

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

Traveler Photos


Viator Traveler's Reviews

85 Reviews
5 Star
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1 Star
Patrick C
, Mar 2019

The volcano was everything I expected and more. The day was perfect and the volcano was spectacular. But the thermal pools at Tabacon were over the top. Truly amazing.

Richard R
, Feb 2019

We thoroughly enjoyed our day on this tour. Pickup was on time and smooth. The driver (I’m sorry I missed his name) was very safe and professional. Donaldo was an excellent guide who shared such interesting facts about his beautiful country with us. The visit to the volcano was good, and the walk up to the viewpoint is very doable by almost anyone. The hot springs were beyond belief ~ so beautiful, peaceful, and well-maintained. We have been to hot springs all over the world, from Canada to Hungary, and these were by far the most amazing.
The food was also terrific. For lunch, we had our choice of entrees and fresh juice in a lovely restaurant en route to the volcano. For dinner, it was a buffet with many choices, including roast beef, paella, and even pizza.
The only drawback to this tour were some of the other guests. You know, the usual few who are not ready for pickup or those who yap incessantly when others are trying to listen to the. Guide. But most upsetting to me is the fact that so few offered any sort of tip to thank our driver and guide who went above and beyond the call of duty. We are retirees on a fixed income from Canada but had to leave something to express our gratitude.
All in all, I can highly recommend this tour. Narcissists shouldn’t bother.

, Jan 2019

It's a great, long day trip. if you fly into San Jose and want an easy, round trip full day tour, this is for you. This is NOT a hiking tour. Suitable for anyone that can walk up stairs at a moderate incline for the Volcano viewing area. Definitely recommend solid hiking shoes for stability or sneakers with solid grips. Tour bus was great. If you do not do well in cars with lots of turns, be prepared to take precautions such as motion sickness bracelets or pills. The roads outside the city are windy, fast and bumpy. Tabacon Hot Springs is as beautiful as the pictures show. Very relaxing way to end the day. NOTE - the lockers are SMALL in the womens locker room. Bring a small handbag, tote or day pack. Larger bags will not fit in these lockers. Food was great in both the lunch and the dinner restaurants. Would definitely recommend this tour to anyone. We had Eric as a tour guide and Pablo as a driver. They were amazing, informative and safe drivers!

, Dec 2018

little bit disapoint at Arenal volcano 20minutes at look out point base of mountain from far away after 3 hrs drive , but Tabacon hot springs is wonderfull we love it, good food an excellent services they provide everything towel-locker- shampoo-condition-gel etc and hair dryer too...

, Nov 2018

I loved this excursion. The food was amazing. The hot springs were so beautiful, although I felt like 4 hours were not needed at the hot springs. 2 hours would have been enough. I would definitely recommend this excursion.

, Aug 2018

A must see, I went with my 28 year old daughter, it was breathtaking to see the volcano. And the hot springs is something you have to do if you ever visit Costa Rica.

Margaret F
, Aug 2018

Terrific guide. Pleasant people. Safe journey and relaxing. Not boring. Be ready to be a tourist! Good views and interesting spa.

Rebecca R
, Jul 2018

A wonderful day trip! This was the second time I took it. Such a value! Tabacon is a magical place!

Falecia A
, Jul 2018

The advertised trip was not the trip we received. When we got to the springs, the driver told us we would not be going to the volcano, as advertised and as paid for in advance. Had I known we would not go to the park to see the volcano, I would not have purchased this trip! Very disappointing!!

Alan DC
, May 2018

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. The volcano wasn't so impressive but the stay at Tabacon Hot Springs was awesome. The resort's clean and dinner was sumptuous!


Book online or call
(888) 651-9785
(888) 651-9785
Product code: 3171TABACON

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