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Costa Rica: A lunar landscape in the Irazu Volcano

Updated: Aug 25, 2020

If you want to visit this volcano, the best will be to start your day early morning from San Jose (capital), because it's the highest active volcano of 11,260 ft (3,432 m), and with this altitude you can feel strong winds blowing and bringing the clouds very fast. So, in seconds, it can be all covered and you won't see a thing.

One of the most astonishing scenes, besides the gorgeous crater when it's full with water and shows its mineral-rich lake amazingly transforms its color from emerald-green to crimson-red. It's that the summit of the Irazú Volcano has an extraordinary, unique and surreal lunar landscape, as a result of the wind and volcanic activity in the area.

This national park’s with around 2300 ha of montane forest, including primary, secondary and cloud forests. And although the climate and environment here is harsh there are a few inhabitants such as coyotes, armadillos, tiger cats, squirrels, foxes, weasels and some species of birds.

If I were you, I wouldn't skip this amazing volcano located in Cartago province. It has a very easy access and there are a couple of activities that you can add after the return to your hotel.

Some details for an actual visit to the National Park Volcano Irazú:

1. It's open every day from 8:00 am until 3:00 pm with a 50% of capacity according to the measures of the Health Ministry of Costa Rica.

2. Entrance must be paid upon arrival with debit or credit card. There is no online system to make your reservation and payment.

3. You have to bring your ID or passport to control your nationality.

  • Nationals and residents adults : 1000 colones

  • Nationals and residents children: 500 colones (2 years to 12 years)

  • Tourist adults: $15

  • Tourist children: $5

4. You have to bring your mask or face shield to enter any of the areas of the National Park: Prusia or Craters areas. You have to use them in the toilets, coffee shop and charging counter.

5.If there is line to enter, you have to wait in the car to avoid that you get in contact with other family groups.

6. The small picnic tables are not open for use.

7. All health and safety measures established by the Ministry of Health in the face of COVID-19, social distancing, social bubbles, sneezing protocol, hand washing, etc. must be followed. 8. No person with COVID-19 symptoms is admitted. 9. No animals allowed to enter 10. No alcohol, no smoking or no drones allowed. 11. No guns allowed.

*Amanda Urcuyo is a travel designer for Costa Rica and you can contact her for information on tours, hotels, rent a car or shuttles:

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