Free things to do in La Fortuna

With so many things to see a do in La Fortuna, don't forget about some of the more simple activities! From just walking around, exploring the beautiful town to taking a short walk to a beautiful swimming hole, there are plenty of things to keep you occupied when you aren't on a tour or gazing at the majestic Arenal Volcano! Plus, you don't need a car to get to them!


Upon arriving to La Fortuna, you probably noticed the beautiful park and church right in the center of town. The park is a wonderful place to spend a few hours on a sunny day, with gardens and small walking paths throughout you are able to see some of the flora and fauna native to the area, bring a picnic lunch, or grab a fresh fruit juice on your way and find a bench to soak up the sun!

Left: Center of the park, facing the church and volcano

Right: Center of the park facing the water fountain


A quick 20 minute walk out of town will bring you to a local swimming hole known as El Salto, ask any local for directions and they'll point you in the right direction! (Once you get there, find the paths located on both sides of the bridge that bring you down to the river). Right on the river, you can swim in the refreshing natural pool here, and jump like Tarzan from the rope swing! It's the perfect stop on a warm summer day. There's even a few short trails to discover along the river. Make a day of it and pack a picnic lunch and sit on the rocks to enjoy it.

Beautiful views on your walk to El Salto

Views from the trail next to El Salto swimming hole, taken after a very rainy day with high waters! Featuring the rope swing!


Being at the base of the Arenal Volcano, the areas around La Fortuna are scattered with hot springs, most in resorts, but lucky enough there is a hot springs pool right off the river, Rio Chollin! And it's free to enter! You'll walk past a yellow gate and down a path that will bring you under a bridge filled with graffiti, and this is where you find a little version of heaven! Here you can relax in the natural warm water and re-energize from your busy time of tours and exploring. There's no better way to spend a day or evening than in the hot springs. This is definitely been one of my favorite activities of the 3! Right off the main road about 14km outside of town, if you don't have a car it's recommended to take a taxi as it's off of a busy road and it's a very long walk or bike ride mostly up hill! It's also recommended to not take any valuables with you (all you really need is a towel!) and keep anything you bring with you.

View from the free hot springs.

(Image provided by Google, as we went after dark)


We hope you enjoy La Fortuna and all of it's activities as much as we do!

-Arenal Container Hostel

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