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“What a climb!”

La Fortuna Waterfall
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US$15.00*
and up
La Fortuna Waterfall Admission Ticket
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US$57.00*
and up
La Fortuna Waterfall Hike by Car
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US$108.00*
and up
Hanging Bridges and La Fortuna Waterfall Nature Hike
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: La Fortuna Waterfall Ecological Reserve Our fortune of crystalline waters Located in Central America, Costa Rica, in the northern plains, just 4 kilometers from La Fortuna, a piece of nature is hidden, a bit of green gold, which sustains our community and makes us proud of its beauty: The La Fortuna Waterfall. A place so near, and yet so far from the sounds of the quaint town. The Waterfall Ecological Reserve is complete with a parking lot, souvenir shop, restrooms, changing rooms, and a snack shop. The reserve is visited by more than 1000 tourists a year, who come to enjoy this piece of heaven, a continuous water flow which fascinates all who behold it. From the time of your arrival, the staff will treat you with the full attention that you deserve. The initial bridge will allow you to observe the marvelous flora and fauna as you reach the first observation point, giving you a preview of what you will discover after descending 600 meters. Once you begin your journey down, you will observe all kinds of birds, including the ever popular toucan, which is often found in this area, feeding on insects. Along the expedition, you will discover the true colors of nature and the adrenaline felt climbing down and back up 480 natural steps, with appropriate rest areas along the way. Later, the view will clear, allowing you to admire our true fortune of crystalline waters. As you continue down, you will discover a dry waterfall, over 5000 years old, in which water flows only during the rainy season, in addition to our waterfall with a constant water flow, both of which are studied each year by Canadian geology students. Both rock formations were formed by the magma poured out of the Arenal Volcano, thousands of years ago. Finally, we can fully enjoy this splendid touch of nature; the pure waters of the La Fortuna Waterfall and its 70 meters of height, which reflect the magnificent power of Mother Nature. More than 100,000 tourists from around the world have come for a simple visit, to film movies and TV programs, and even to celebrate their wedding, each leaving with incredible memories. Once you climb down to the base of the waterfall, you can fully enjoy the refreshing crystal clear waters, a desire of all human life. Take the time to enjoy safe and fun recreation in harmony with our natural resources, including coexistence with the fish which nurture this piece of heaven…our fortune of crystalline waters. We are non-profit organization runs the waterfall, using the entrance fee to help maintain different projects for improving the life of the population of La Fortuna. Our work are focus on social projects, infrastructure improving and protection and maintenance of natural resources of La Fortuna.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children, Food available for purchase
Reviewed 17 December 2013

In a way, it's a bit difficult to rate this since I've been living in Costa Rica for almost a year now...a waterfall to me is not the same to a person who has never seen one before. Mind you, I still feel that this is a beautiful waterfall and I'm glad I saw it. I think what turned me off the most was the price tag. And maybe they do it to cut down on the number of people that come, but they have made it into a tourist attraction. Luckily for the older folks or people that have trouble walking up the narrow and steep steps that are there, they are building a nicer pathway.

At least they put the money to good use, but I wouldn't go again unless I was with someone who wanted to see it. There really wasn't much room at the bottom to hang out and watch it. We went early in the morning so there weren't as many people and it was also a low point in the season. I can't imagine what it would be like if it were crowded! YUCK! I think it was $10 to enter per person. Yes, the steps were steep and slippery and even I had to take breaks going up and down them and I'm in pretty good shape. You can only get a feel for how big the fall is in a photo if someone is standing by the edge or is in the water (which was SUPER cold, by the way).

We didn't stay that long because honestly there's not much to do but look at it or if you're brave enough, swim in it. There is a small section next to it where you can sit on a rock and put your feet in the water which would be great on a very sunny day. The water is a beautiful blue.

I just started feeling trapped in there and there weren't that many people around...so again, I'd advise going as soon as they open to beat the crowds. If you speak spanish (or your driver speaks English), ask THEM where the free stuff is to be found...we were turned on to a free hot spring river instead of paying the $40 to go to the touristy one!

Their gift store was nice enough with decent prices. I don't know why sun dresses in this town cost so much ($18-20)...but of course it IS a tourist town so that's why!! But there was a cute dress there I figured I could find in town and I DIDN'T! Ended up paying a couple dollars more for another one in town and wasn't as happy. So if you see something you like, buy it. The prices were about the same here as in town.

The bathroom facilities were decent, although I don't remember much about it (which could be a good thing). I remember they were spacious though and clean.

Hope this helped!

2  Thank hotrodgurl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 17 December 2013

Beautiful scenery, amazingly fresh water and forceful power of nature for only 10$.
The hike is about 15min down, 25-40min up on concrete block step, it is quite steep but really worth it. You could do the hike in flip flop, but water shoes or snickers makes it mch safer and comortable. Definitely take the time to swim when you get down there. The first pool where the waterfall is, is not for young children or inexperienced swimmers since the waterfall creates strong currents, but if you feel strong, it's an amazing swim. There is a lower pool just a few steps down for more relax swimming.

Thank Joanie B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 December 2013 via mobile

We should have made it a habit of leaving hiking shoes in the car, as this trail caught my girlfriend and me wearing sandals. It can be rocky, steep and slippery the descent. Trail is taken care of and the view is worth the walk. Water is too cold to swim, but if you are in La Fortuna then it's a not-miss

Thank Global-Speedster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 December 2013

For 10 dollars per person, you couldn't find a better activity. Beautiful waterfall. I got in whistled at for trying to swim around the waterfall (there weren't any signs posted) by the pseudo lifeguard. It wasn't that bad of a hike down there stair case and it was very pretty! The water was refreshing. It was one of my favorite things we did on our trip. Definitely recommend it.

1  Thank Jimmy A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 December 2013

beware is very steep down and then you have to get back up again
almost 500 steps they said...
you can hike part way but should go all the way down for best view
can swim there too but is very cold

1  Thank cathy t
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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