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Discount: Cerro Chato Hike: Option A (La Fortuna/Arenal)

Discount: Cerro Chato Hike: Option A (La Fortuna/Arenal)

NOTE: The content on this page was last updated on December 26th, 2017.

This tour is currently unavailable

Operated by Desafio Adventure Company


Tour departure/return location: La Fortuna/Arenal

Tour times: 7:30am

Tour duration: Approximately 6 hours

Tour includes: Cerro chato hiking tour, trail entrance fee, La Fortuna waterfall visit, waterfall entrance fee, guide, lunch, and round-trip transportation to/from La Fortuna hotels (hotels that fall outside of the regular transportation zone may have an additional fee; leave us a comment at the bottom of this page if you wish us to confirm the transportation amount that would apply to/from your specific hotel)

Tour operator’s description: The Cerro Chato hiking tour is perfect for those who like a good workout and are willing to hike in pretty extreme conditions! The Cerro Chato Extinct Volcano makes for a gorgeous backdrop on this intense trek which takes you straight up through lush rain forest to the crater of the extinct Cerro Chato Volcano. Health & Wellness vacations are becoming popular, so be sure to include this active and high-intensity activity on your vacation with us. The Extreme Cerro Chato hike, along the biological corridor connecting with the Arenal Volcano, is an intense 4-5 hour Arenal hiking tour through lush rainforest. You will hike up a steep and sometimes muddy trail through the beautiful rainforest, all the way to the top. It is believed the Cerro Chato Volcano (which means small hill in Spanish) has been inactive for hundreds of years. The Maleku indigenous group is native to the Cerro Chato area and worshiped the volcano and many Maleku artifacts have been found in the area. The nickname local people have given Cerro Chato is “The Sleeping Indian” — we will let your guide tell you why! Along the way up the Cerro Chato Volcano, your professional nature guide is bound to help you spot amazing bird life like toucans and the Montezuma Oropendula and other rainforest creatures, such as monkeys, anteaters, sloths, pizotes and much more. Your nature guide will be set with an adventure pack and capable of handling any incidents along the way. You’ll pass through flat pastures on to a rocky, dirt path surrounded by deep, lush rainforest, and then into the clouds as you keep getting higher. You’ll ascend from just above sea level to 1140 meters above sea level. You’ll feel like you are on top of the world! Be sure you have your camera with you to snap a selfie of yourself in front of the impressive Arenal Volcano off in the distance when you reach one of the coolest vantage points — and post your photo to our FaceBook page to become an official member of our CERRO CHATO SURVIVORS CLUB! This is a very hefty hike and you should be in good condition to take this on! We do not permit the hike down to the emerald green lake crater as conditions are too dangerous and slippery. Keep in mind the trails can be very muddy and it may be difficult to see the crater’s lagoon due to heavy cloud cover. Once you’ve accomplished the extreme part of the Cerro Chato Volcano hike, take your time hiking down to the base of the volcano. From there, your nature guide will take you across the Arenal National Park Conservation Area to get to the entrance of the famous 150-ft La Fortuna waterfall and cool off in the rushing tropical waters. The entrance fee to the La Fortuna Waterfall hike is covered in the price of your tour and the local government development association (ADIFORT) uses the revenue it collects from the entrance fees for various local projects such as a sports complex and other infrastructure needs in our community. The La Fortuna waterfall hike is well worth the 300-steps to make your way back up! This will be an unforgettable experience full of nature, beauty, and definitely a good workout! And we think this comment from one of our Cerro Chato Survivors says it all!: “The Cerro Chato hike is a) physically exhilarating and challenging 2-3 hour hike, depending on your fitness level, up the side of a dormant volcano through primary rainforest and a refreshing dip in a crater lagoon is an adventure not to be missed! Isidro, a superbly athletic guide, motivates you to the top with his excellent pacing and informative stories en route. Also included in this excursion is a side trip to La Fortuna Waterfall (1-2 hours if you stay for a swim) and a delicious lunch. Bring water, wear hiking boots, and be ready for an intense workout in Mother Nature’s Gym!” We look forward to having you challenge yourself on the Cerro Chato extreme volcano hike with us in Costa Rica!

Additional details

  • This tour requires a minimum of 2 people to run. Please contact us to inquire about tour availability if your travel group is comprised of less than the tour operator’s required minimum number of participants.


  • Children must be at least 13 years old to participate.


  • Comfortable clothing
  • Comfortable tennis shoes or walking shoes (flip flops are not recommended)
  • Light rain jacket
  • Sunscreen
  • Drinking water
  • Hat
  • Insect repellent
  • Camera

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