The Aspinall Family came to Arenal in 1972 when the Costa Rican Electrical Institue (ICE) was building a dam to create Arenal Lake. At the beginning they had to either walk or ride by horses from the entrance of the National Park and decided to buy an abandoned cattle farm of about 870 acres to plant macadamia, lumber trees and protect the remaining natural forest.
The beautiful region of the northern plains of Costa Rica sits in the shadow of its more famous neighbor, Arenal Volcano, this volcano is so fascinating, delightful and the awe-inspiring natural character of the environment, immerses you in wildlife and the rainforest.
Each day of theweek for the last ten years, our bird specialist named Cristian organized a morning tour in the Arenal Observatory Lodge. Every morning, starting early, the tour begins with small talk to begin the walk-through of the property fields.
We are know how to put on a party - big time. If you are lucky enough to share a holiday or fiesta with our local people, it will add a whole new dimension to your vacation.December - All month - the Lights Festival in San Jose features homes and business decotared with lights. Parades, concerts and nightly firework displays. The following activities can make your trip an unique experience:
For two days in September, the Arenal Observatory Lodge & Spa had the pleasure of hosting a workshop on birdwatching in collaboration with the Costa Rica Ornithology Association (Asociación Ornitologica de Costa Rica). In addition to our staff at the hotel, we invited members of the community to join us for one of two, four-hour long workshops providing an introduction into ornithology and the importance of birdwatching.
December 2013 - Arenal Annual Birding CountThe 1st Arenal Annual Christmas Bird Counts, sponsored by Arenal Observatory Lodge and conducted by International and local bird watchers, bird lovers and volunteers, were held throughout the Arenal area. The counts attempt to record every individual bird encountered within 8 different routes and during 8 hours of one calendar day during December 7, 2013. The Christmas Bird Counts identified 341 bird species only in Arenal surrounding area; this represents 38% of Costa Rica´s Biodiversity.
The sun was shining, horses were grazing in the lush, green grass and Arenal Volcano was clearly visible against blue Costa Rican sky. Perfect day right? From the photo above you would never be able to tell that just a few hours earlier I was curled into fetal position, completely immobilized by some terribly evil stomach virus, Drew had it too, but luckily he was able to overpower it a bit better than I. Here’s our little cabin in La Fortuna that I thought I would never leave.
We had a very pleasant and enjoyable stay at the lodge and in the La Fortuna area in general. My group was especially pleased with their accommodations and I was happy with my room as well, even though my view was not quite as good and I couldn't see the birds that they had so close to their rooms!
- Exceptional location and views of Arenal Volcano.
- Eco friendly resort so you can get up close to the wildlife.
- Self-guided hikes and walks within the vast hotel grounds.
Want to know what it feels like to be just a couple miles away from the bottom of a volcano? You can find out if you stay at the Arenal Observatory Lodge, a hotel located 1.7 miles from Arenal Volcano. This huge property of 350 hectares offers 7 miles of trails, waterfalls, daily guided hikes, a museum, an observatory tower and a garden all with incredible views of the volcano.