Visiting La Fortuna Waterfall
Eyes gaze upwards in admiration upon arrival at your intended destination, the magnificent La Fortuna Waterfall in Costa Rica. Cascading 200 feet or 65 meters down the water lands briskly into a clear pool. You’re required to take the 480 steps to reach the falls.
The best way of reaching La Fortuna Waterfall in Costa Rica is through the gates of ADIFORT. ADIFORT is a non-profit community organization that manages the property. They are on the left bank of La Fortuna River Canyon. La Fortuna Waterfall is located near the town of La Fortuna, at the foot of the famous Arenal volcano.
At the bottom of the 480 step trail, there is a quiet jade colored pool with soft sands. These sands surround the boulders that turn a vibrant turquoise hue as the water gets deeper. This pool makes for a great swimming hole. It has clear waters, and you can see silver darting river fish. The fish energetically chase food that happens to fall in the water. The pond provides a perfect backdrop for photographs. It has a beautiful mossy foreground and gently drifting currents. The plunging waterfall pool bottom covered with rugged boulders and the mighty cascade outpour. Far too dangerous for swimming, which makes the fish pool safer for a quick dip in the water.
Hike back up
Climbing the 480 stairs backup can be slow and a bit tiring, but your patience will be rewarded. There are rest stops offering great vistas along the way where climbers can catch their breath. Be sure to pay attention to what may be happening in the trees and jungle. Surely wildlife is easily spotted in the riparian forests of La Fortuna Waterfall in Costa Rica. Observant naturalists can find toucans, sloths, agoutis, snakes, lizards, monkeys. Also, many other exotic Costa Rican animals hiding in the rainforest flora near Arenal Volcano.
Try the El Salto Water Hole river rope swing a bit farther downstream on the same river as the La Fortuna waterfall. For 15 dollars you are certain to have a great time. At the edge of the falls, take many great pictures to share with friends or family. Or just sit down relax and enjoy a picnic meal. Your tour of the falls is great any time of year but especially during the wet season. That is when the waterfall reaches full volume. Either way, you are sure to enjoy yourself.
La Fortuna Waterfall a Sustainable Solution
At La Fortuna Waterfall in Costa Rica, ADIFORT has built structures to serve the waterfall’s many daily visitors. It has large, clean bathrooms, picnic tables, a souvenir shop and beautiful gardens with birds among the fruit trees and flowers. In fact, ADIFORT has created one of the most prosperous sustainable projects in Costa Rica. In association with the local government, this community association runs many community initiatives like building and maintaining town roads, the town bus stop, a sports and recreation center, a new main bridge to enter La Fortuna from the east, and other projects.
Public schools in and around La Fortuna also receive benefit from ADIFORT. Support goes to its classrooms, education materials and scholarships for local students. The 15 dollar entrance foreigners pay at La Fortuna Waterfalls and the money spent at its inexpensive souvenir shop, partly goes back to the community. The community association has been a true motor of development in rural Costa Rica, particularly in La Fortuna. With the help of community enterprise and sustainable ventures like ADIFORT.
Arenal Volcano National Park
As the most visted National Park in Costa Rica, Arenal has a lot to offer. You can go for a hike and spot snakes, monkeys, tapir, deer, … Visit the famous hanging bridges for a walk above the rainforests. Go rafting, take canopy tours, kayak on Lake Arenal or just stew in the Arenal hot springs.
A visit to La Fortuna is not complete with waterfall rappelling! You can take tours leaving from La Fortuna and take a half day trip rappelling as well as canyoning. Learn more about waterfall rappelling in our blog about top 10 activities In Costa Rica.
Visit during December and April for the clearest weather: The dry season will give you the highest chance to get a great view of the volcano and avoid rains.
Visit between May and November for less crowds: If you don’t mind risking a little weather, you can avoid the crowds. Although keep in mind that as Costa Rica’s most popular destination, you should never expect solitude.
Visit the waterfalls early: Especially during the dry season, this is the best way to avoid the crowds.
Bring your swimming gear: Don’t forget that you can swim in the waterfall!