We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

Arenal Observatory Lodge & Spa

Show Prices
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
Enter dates for lowest prices
powered by PriceFinder
Check In Check Out
1 room 2 adults 0 children
We check 200+ sites to find the latest and lowest prices.
Professional photos
Arenal Observatory Lodge & Spa
Arenal Observatory Lodge & Spa
Panoramas (22)
View Map
{"widget":{"name":"ibex_photo_carousel","template":"ibex_photo_carousel__widget","dust":{"nav_controls":"ibex_photo_carousel__nav_controls"},"moduleList":["handlers"],"divClasses":"prw_rup prw_ibex_photo_carousel","js":{"handlers":"(ta.prwidgets.getjs(this,'handlers'))"}},"scriptFlags":null,"containerClass":null}
Add Photo Write a Review

1,856 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language
  • More
There are newer reviews for Arenal Observatory Lodge & Spa
See the most recent reviews
Showing 1,513: English reviews
Muscat, Oman
Reviewed 17 May 2012

We stayed there as it was going to be our first visit to an active volcano, google describes it as one of the top ten active ones. Well, it was conical and very close but unfortunately not rumbling or erupting. We had a great time here. Not only do the birds put on a great show every day but there...

 Report
Helpful?
Thank BrettYoung
Lakewood, Colorado
Reviewed 8 May 2012

I'm hesitated between 3 1/2 or 4 as far as rating and here is why. We only stay here for one night in April 2012. Location is awesome because it used to be observatory research. They still store all historical information in Museum there which is great. This location is a great place to view Arenal. I think you can...

 Report
Helpful?
Thank Piradee N
Berkhamsted
Reviewed 7 May 2012

This is probably as close as one would want to get to an active volcano. It is very popular and busy but the rooms are excellent and the food good. It is many kilometres along a dirt road but there are lots of opportunities to spot birds and mammals en route. The birds in the lodge garden were spectacular.

 Report
Helpful?
Thank Sabra1942
New York
Reviewed 3 May 2012

This was my second time in Costa Rica but first time staying at this hotel. The hotel was fine for the value but a little dirty. The location is literally at the foothill of the volcano - so the views are breathtaking and animals wander the premises. Staff is friendly and there are lots of activities you can book directly...

 Report
Helpful?
1Thank carmensandiego90
Manual Antonio
Reviewed 2 May 2012

This is a great place to be quiet and respectful of nature. The place reflects these values and sets up a lovely hotel to accomodate wildlife and humans. The Smithsonian room was where we stayed, for $172/night for four of us. The walls are paper thin, so don't plan on napping while they clean the rooms, and just know that...

 Report
Helpful?
1Thank aikidomonkey
Atlanta, Georgia
Reviewed 1 May 2012

Gorgeous, quiet, safe property. Extremely clean rooms. Lots of different trails for exploring. Restaurant very good; breakfast (included) has lots of options. Great bird-watching and meticulous grounds-keeping.

 Report
Helpful?
Thank ellie_pc
Valparaiso, Indiana
Reviewed 1 May 2012

GREAT staff - super friendly and absolutely breathtaking views. The food was great, especially the breakfast buffet while watching the birds feast outside and coatimundi's searching for leftovers. A bit of a drive to get there, but ABSOLUTELY worth it. We traveled from Arenal down to Tarcoles to Drake Bay and this was the best hotel of all by far....

 Report
Helpful?
Thank wgates8561
London, United Kingdom
Reviewed 28 April 2012

This hotel is wonderfully situated overlooking both Arenal Volcano and Arenal Lake. It is set in wonderful grounds with trails of varying lengths and difficulties. We spent a whole day walking the trails, visiting a waterfall and spotting birds. Some of the rooms are very good but do not stay in La Casona it is like a backpacker's hostel with...

 Report
Helpful?
Thank Sally Y
Fort Myers, Florida, United States
Reviewed 26 April 2012

Out of all the hotels we stayed in while on honeymoon in Costa Rica this was our favorite. Everything about this hotel was amazing; the proximity to the volcano, the views, the rooms, the remoteness of the area, the wildlife, the random waterfalls around the grounds, and the sounds of the night. If you want the full costa rican rainforest...

 Report
Helpful?
1Thank Aida K
richmond, va
Reviewed 25 April 2012

Incredible! This place has a magical feel to it. We loved it. PERFECT Pros 1. Views of the Volcano are amazing 2. Free nature walk in the morning is wonderful and the tour guide Edwardo is the best! 3. Jacuzzi and pool are great 4. Free Breakfast is delicious 5. You can walk around the property for hours exploring hanging...

 Report
Helpful?
Thank amber b

2,125 photos of this hotel

Traveller photos: See what travellers like you saw

Viewed
All Traveller Photos (1679)
Viewed
Hotel & Grounds (464)
Viewed
Pool/Beach Area (78)
Viewed
View from Room (167)
Viewed
Dining (93)
Viewed
Room/Suite (261)
Viewed
Family/Play Areas (5)
Viewed
Bathroom (17)
Viewed
0:48
Videos (3)
Viewed
Other (591)

TripAdvisor Photos: Professional photos exclusively commissioned by TripAdvisor

Viewed
All TripAdvisor Photos (374)
Viewed
Amenities (45)
Viewed
Other (250)
Viewed
Pool (14)
Viewed
Dining (18)
Viewed
Standard Room (16)
Viewed
The Hotel (31)

Management photos: Courtesy of the property manager

Viewed
All Management Photos (72)
Viewed
Hotel & Grounds (27)
Viewed
Pool/Beach Area (3)
Viewed
Room/Suite (8)
Viewed
View from Room (1)
Viewed
Dining (4)
Viewed
Business Centre/Function Rooms (1)
Viewed
Other (28)
Check In Check Out
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these La Fortuna de San Carlos hotels
7.2 km away
Volcano Lodge & Springs
Volcano Lodge & Springs
#14 of 60 in La Fortuna de San Carlos
2,695 reviews
4.7 km away
Hotel Lomas del Volcan
Hotel Lomas del Volcan
#11 of 60 in La Fortuna de San Carlos
1,334 reviews
6.1 km away
Hotel El Silencio del Campo
Hotel El Silencio del Campo
#3 of 60 in La Fortuna de San Carlos
1,782 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
7.9 km away
Arenal Manoa Hotel
Arenal Manoa Hotel
#12 of 60 in La Fortuna de San Carlos
1,721 reviews
7.8 km away
Arenal Springs Resort and Spa
Arenal Springs Resort and Spa
#10 of 60 in La Fortuna de San Carlos
2,265 reviews
6.1 km away
The Royal Corin Thermal Water Spa & Resort
The Royal Corin Thermal Water Sp...
#7 of 60 in La Fortuna de San Carlos
2,124 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Amenities

Highlights
  • Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi )
  • Pool
  • Free Parking
  • Restaurant
  • Bar/Lounge
  • Spa
  • Breakfast included
GreenLeadersBronze level
About the property
  • Non-Smoking Hotel
  • Wheelchair Access
Things to do
  • Pool
  • Restaurant
  • Bar/Lounge
  • Spa
  • Hot Tub
Room types
  • Suites
  • Non-Smoking Rooms
  • Family Rooms
  • Accessible rooms
Internet
  • Free Internet
  • Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi )
  • Public Wifi
Services
  • Free Parking
  • Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly)
  • Shuttle Bus Service
  • Breakfast included
  • Laundry Service
  • Concierge
  • Multilingual Staff
Official Description (provided by the hotel)
Situated only 1.7 Miles from the majestic Arenal Volcano and with a spectacular view of Lake Arenal, the Arenal Observatory Lodge (AOL) offers guests the opportunity to DISCOVER, EXPLORE and RELAX. Located within the Arenal Conservation Area and surrounded by rainforests and nature, AOL sits on a 870 acres property, which consists of 400 acres of reforestation, 270 acres of natural forest and 200 acres of cultivated land. The hotel offers 48 comfortable rooms surrounded by gardens, the majority with a direct view of the volcano and/or the forest. The 7 miles of well-maintained trails for walking, horseback riding or biking running through the property provide good opportunities to observe a variety of flora and fauna. Approximately 400 species of birds live in the area making AOL a preferred destination for bird watchers. Activities at the hotel include hikes to the waterfall or to explore Cerro Chato (an extinct volcano with a small lake in the crater), horseback riding, bicycling through the trails, enjoying a refreshing swim in our pool, or simply relaxing with a massage in our SPA. The hotel is well located to serve as a base for a variety of excursions such as: Cano Negro Nature Refuge, hot springs, Venado Caves, Canopy Tours, Arenal Hanging Bridges, Fishing, White Water Rafting, Canyoning, Biking etc. It also serves as a very interesting stop before heading on to Monteverde Cloud Forest or to the beaches of the Pacific coast. Arenal Observatory Lodge is the perfect place for adventure lovers, families, and honeymooners. With its spectacular location, great service and friendly personnel you won't be disappointed ... more   less 

Additional Information about Arenal Observatory Lodge & Spa

Address: 23 Km West From la Fortuna Town, Located on the Base of the Arenal Volcano | Main road to Arenal National Park, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Arenal Volcano National Park > La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range: $156 - $235 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Arenal Observatory Lodge & Spa 3*
Number of rooms: 49
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Booking.com, Orbitz, Priceline, Hotels.com, Agoda, Cheap Tickets and Despegar.com so you can book your Arenal Observatory Lodge & Spa reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Arenal Observatory Hotel La Fortuna De San Carlos
Arenal Observatory Lodge & Spa Costa Rica/La Fortuna De San Carlos
Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.
Claim Your Listing

Questions & Answers

Here's what travellers have asked, with answers from Arenal Observatory Lodge & Spa staff and other travellers.
36 questions
Ask a question
New York City, New York
over a year ago

See all questions (36)

Questions? Get answers from Arenal Observatory Lodge & Spa staff and past guests.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Can tickets for local attractions be purchased at the front desk?
  • Do you have to pay extra for a mini-fridge?
  • At what time does the pool open each day?

See which rooms travellers prefer

“A room looking towards the Volcano would be best”
 of 5 bubbles PatrickF708, 24 Mar 2017 | Read review
“Ask for a Smithsonian room”
 of 5 bubbles 739aliciah, 23 Mar 2017 | Read review
“We stayed in Villa Phil 1,2,3, and we couldn't have been happier.”
  • View from every room in the house
  • View from the main lodge
 of 5 bubbles puk1936, 20 Mar 2017 | Read review
“Smithsonian rooms all have a view of the volcano.”
 of 5 bubbles BuckhornOntario, 10 Mar 2017 | Read review
“Room 29 or 30. You will not be disappointed.”
 of 5 bubbles CTK888, 7 Mar 2017 | Read review
5 of 5