La Fortuna is Costa Rica’s famous hot-spring region, its incredible natural bounty owing to Arenal, the most active volcano in the country. La Fortuna’s eco-tourism scene thrives not only on the many adventure sports on offer but also the multitude of hotels boasting their own, in-house hot-springs. Can you imagine anything better than spending a whole day whitewater rafting, kayaking, zip-lining, mountain biking and hiking, and then retreating to your own hot-spring hotel in La Fortuna for a late afternoon and evening of complete relaxation? We think not!
Here are the most amazing hot-spring hotels in La Fortuna & Arenal:
Nayara Springs – This adults-only luxurious option is downright divine and about the best splurge if you’re planning an adventure honeymoon in Costa Rica. What’s not to love? The property is designed so that each villa has complete privacy and it seriously feels like you’re the only guests there. The service is impeccable and the exclusivity of the place means the hot-springs are never crowded. Plus, there’s an abundance of luxurious amenities to enjoy here, including a well-equipped gym, jacuzzi, gift shop and private plunge pool directly outside your villa’s door. Outstanding food, dreamy surroundings and a contemplative atmosphere make this an exceptional choice for romantic escapes. The only real downside of such a jaw-dropping hot-spring hotel in La Fortuna? It is almost impossible to tear yourself away for a full-day of explorations!
Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort – This Arenal institution was the first hot-spring hotel built in La Fortuna and is revered for offering 100% natural hot springs (as opposed to most other hotels which use pumps to circulate and heat the waters). Even after all these years, Tabacon is considered the most reliable hot-spring hotel choice, given it offers an Arenal hot-spring experience for everyone: families, honeymooners and even solo travellers. With so many pools and accommodation options, Tabacon is a great all-rounder, with acres of walking trails, wonderfully maintained forest trails and awesome services like multiple restaurants, bars, and an excellent beauty spa. Due to its sheer size and the array of services offered, Tabacon doesn’t feel as ‘intimate and exclusive’ as Nayara Springs but it also comes at about half the cost so makes for a wonderful compromise.
Los Lagos Hotel – Hugely popular with local Costa Rican families, Los Lagos is an affordable choice that ticks SO many boxes. Not only does it boast its own hot-springs but also its own private lakes, water park, horse-stables, swimming pools, walking trails, health spa and an abundance of wildlife. With its stunning volcano views, warm hospitality and an abundance of kid-friendly activities, this is an excellent option for active families who want a couple of days of R&R in a hot-spring hotel in La Fortuna. At Los Lagos, you all have the option to be as active as you like.
Paradise Hot Springs Thermal Resort – One of the best value-for-money choices in La Fortuna, Paradise is affordable despite it offering 5* services and amenities. With almost a dozen pools of differing temperatures, gorgeous spa treatments, great food, outstanding landscaped gardens and staff who go out of their way to cater to your every wish, Paradise is, as the name suggests, a heavenly choice as well as a surprisingly affordable one.
Arenal Springs Resort – This modern resort is set on the foothills of Arenal and gifts breath-taking views from every corner. This is a very popular choice for families and couples alike as it offers a nature-infused experience yet with all the mod-cons you’d expect of a stellar resort. The hot-springs are undeniably enticing and the gardens, bursting with birdlife, is a nature-lover’s dream. The property is expansive and accommodates guests with mobility issues so if it’s a comprehensive family-friendly resort you’re after, with options for everyone, Arenal Springs is a top choice.
The Royal Corin Hotel – Much like Arenal Springs, the Royal Corin offers the classic ‘resort’ experience in La Fortuna, although it takes the luxury stakes up a notch. The natural spring pools are wonderful (the swim-up bar is great!) as are the volcanic sauna, thermal jacuzzis, waterfalls and holistic health spa. Kiddie pool attracts plenty of families. All rooms at the Royal Corin are impressively spacious and feature a private terrace or balcony but the suites are out of this world. Want to soak in your own private jacuzzi, overlooking Arenal? Then this is your place!
The Springs Resort and Spa – This world-class hot-spring hotel in La Fortuna will blow you away multiple times; first with its mountaintop location affording extraordinary Arenal and rain-forest views and THEN with all the sensational amenities it offers. It’s no coincidence this is rated one of very best resorts in the whole country! The Springs offers almost 30 hot-spring pools, its own wildlife refuge, a fully-equipped fitness center, amazing beauty spa and private access to the Arenal River where thrilling tubing is on offer. One of the most unforgettable places to stay in Costa Rica!
Volcano Lodge & Springs Hotel – The Volcano Lodge is immensely popular with budget-conscious families and couples and proves the wonderful point that when it comes to amazing hot-spring hotels in La Fortuna, you don’t have to spend a fortune to enjoy them. Costa Rica’s most adored natural assets are here for all to enjoy. Everything about this hot-spring resort is simply lovely, from the comfortable rooms to the gorgeous pools, the glorious views, service, food, spa treatments and the many child-friendly services. Every room boasts Arenal views and, with less than 70 of them, all up, you get the homely Tico hospitality for which Costa Rica is so renowned. If you’d love a more ‘intimate’ La Fortuna hot-spring hotel experience at a really good price, the Volcano Lodge is arguably the best choice.
FAQ About Hot Spring Vacations in Costa Rica
If you’re heading to Costa Rica to enjoy a hot-spring hotel experience, we hope to have given you enough inspiration, thus far! Do note we combine our adventure tours with an array of different accommodation options, including eco-lodges that swap ultra-luxurious experiences for immersive nature-infused ones instead. See our range of recommended Arenal Hotels and chat to us when planning your adventure vacation itinerary – we can help you plan a bespoke journey that incorporates your favorite activities with the hot-spring hotel of your choice.
To help you better plan your Costa Rica trip, we thought we’d answer some of the most frequently-asked questions about the Arenal hot-springs.
- What is there to do in Arenal aside from the hot-springs?
There’s an abundance of exceptional fun to be had in and around the Arenal Volcano National Park. Activities include hiking over ancient lava fields, wildlife spotting (day and night tours) in verdant rain-forests, hiking to glorious waterfalls, zip-lining, whitewater rafting and kayaking, horseback riding, mountain biking and SO much more. See our favorite 15 Amazing Things to Do in Arenal.
- Do you have to stay in a hot-spring hotel in Costa Rica to enjoy a soak?
No, there are plenty of hot-springs in La Fortuna that are open to the public and even a few hotels that sell day-passes to visitors. This is an important aspect of a hot-spring hotel stay, as many people prefer to not share their hotel pools with the general public but only with fellow hotel guests. This is a great way to keep the numbers limited and avoid overcrowding during the high season. The most famous ‘day-pass’ hotel is Tabacon Grand Spa whilst the most famous ‘private’ pools are at the Arenal Springs.
- Is Arenal the only area in Costa Rica with natural hot springs?
Absolutely not! Given the volcanic nature of Costa Rica, there are several hot-spring sources in the country spread out around the central and western regions, namely in the Puntarenas and Guanacaste provinces, as well as Alajuela, which is where you find La Fortuna and Arenal. It’s just that La Fortuna is the most established hot-spring destination so here is where you’ll find the widest range of pools and accommodation choice.
- Are all the hot-spring hotels in La Fortuna expensive?
Not at all, some hot-spring hotels offer rooms at just USD 100 a night, which is cheaper than many other hotels that don’t offer hot-spring pools. Not only is there a hot-spring hotel to suit just about every budget but you can even nab a luxury choice at a reduced price if you choose to travel outside the most popular months (December to April). Travel to La Fortuna during our wet season and you can have the best of both worlds: rains don’t usually start until the early afternoon (the ideal siesta time) so you’ll still enjoy clear mornings for all your activities and can indulge at a heavily-reduced rate in some of the most luxurious lodges. This is one of the tips of on our Budgeting Tips for Costa Rica Adventure Honeymoons
- When is the best time to enjoy a hot-spring vacation in Costa Rica?
Given that you’ll likely be doing a lot more than just hot-spring soaking in Costa Rica, it’ll help to know what is considered the ‘ideal’ time to visit, according to your personal preferences. See our Seasonal Travel Guide to Costa Rica to learn about the differences in regions and experiences, at different times of year – and trust that soaking in a Costa Rica hot-spring is PERFECT at ANY time of year!
Isn’t it time you started planning your own adventure vacation to Costa Rica? What are you waiting for?! At Costa Rica Rios, we organise fully-guided adventure tours (check out the ladies-only week in April, 2020), family adventure vacations and, of course, adventure honeymoons too. We can help you plan your own tailor-made itinerary and find the right hots-spring hotel in La Fortuna and Arenal if you’d love to cap off your thrilling adventure in grand style.
Contact us to know more.