Irazú Volcano

"irazu volcano crater"

Irazú Volcano is an active stratovolcano located in the Central Valley region of Costa Rica, about 31 miles east of the capital city of San Jose. It is the highest volcano in Costa Rica, reaching an elevation of 11,260 feet above sea level and one of the five current active volcanoes in the country. The other four are Arenal Volcano, Poas Volcano, Rincon de la Vieja, and Turrialba.

The volcano has a complex geological history and has undergone numerous eruptions since its formation over 2 million years ago. The most recent major eruption occurred in 1963, which lasted for several years. Today, Irazú Volcano is a popular tourist attraction, with visitors coming to see its crater lake and panoramic views from the summit. In a clear day you can even view the Pacific ocean on one side and the Caribbean sea in the other! The area surrounding the volcano is a national park so you will have to pay an entrance fee.

Local’s tip:
Plan a small day trip to Irazu if your staying in San Jose for a few days. The road to Irazu is very enjoyable as you will pass a number of picturesque and beautiful towns in the province of Cartago. For the thrill-seekers out there you can make a stop in the infamous Sanatorio de Duran which is on the way to the volcano. The Sanatorio de Duran used to be a hospital that treated patients with leprosy and mental illnesses in the 1900s. Now the abandoned hospital is a cool destination for urban explorers and ghost hunters who want to explore the abandoned building.


Plan your visit

Hours and Entrance fee:
The park is open every day from 8am to 3:30pm. The entrance fee is $15 USD for non-residents and $5 USD for children. Residents and nationals pay ¢1000 colones and their children pay ¢500 colones. You can purchase your tickets online in the SINAC official website. Have in mind that there are also parking fees but they are not high.

How to get there:
Driving to Irazu Volcano takes only 1 hour and 30 minutes from San Jose so its a perfect destination for a day trip from the capital city. If you don’t have a car there are two bus routes you can take, one departing from San Jose and the other from Cartago.

Bus option from San Jose:
The bus is a local bus so you pay your fare with the bus driver. The bus stop is located in San Jose, calles 1 y 3, avenida 2. The journey in bus takes 2 hours.

Departure time options from San Jose: 8am
Return time options from Irazu volcano: 12:30pm

Bus option from Cartago:
The bus is a local bus so you pay your fare with the bus driver. The bus stop is located 300 meters north from the northeastern side of the Ruins of Cartago. You can look for the Ruins of Cartago in Gmaps, its on the very center of the city.

Departure time options from Cartago: 12pm
Return time options from Irazu volcano: 3:15pm



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