The Irazú and Turrialba volcanoes form a single system and cannot be presented separately.
Located 30 and 45 kilometers respectively from the city of Cartago, they are initially two distinct volcanoes. The Irazú volcano is known for its crater and lagoon, while the Turrialba volcano is renowned for its majestic shape. Although located on the same seismic plate, their volcanic activities are not connected to each other. When the Turrialba volcano erupts, access to the Irazú volcano is closed as a precaution, but so far, no danger has been reported there.
Irazú is the tallest volcano in Costa Rica, reaching a peak of 3,432 meters. It has not erupted since 1994. Its major attraction is its five craters, each with its own unique-colored lagoon. The volcano’s weather can be unpredictable, and you may need to wait a while for the clouds to clear. In the dry season, the lagoon might even be empty. However, this doesn’t diminish the impressive and deep crater that can be observed.
If the weather is clear, it’s possible to see both the Caribbean coast and the Pacific coast from the summit. With a good telescope, you might even spot Lake Nicaragua!
As for the Turrialba volcano, it has three peaks and reaches an altitude of 3,340 meters. It is one of the most active volcanoes in the region. Between 2014 and 2016, it experienced numerous eruptions. The strongest eruption occurred in May 2016, sending clouds more than 3,000 meters above the volcano and covering nearby villages with ash.
Reopened at the end of 2020, the national park had been closed to the public since July 2012.
We can offer you private tours with our French-speaking guide, Randall, to explore these two volcanoes, Cartago, or even the Orosi Valley, either at the end or the beginning of your trip.