Following our three days on the Pacific side of Costa Rica, we had spent a restful night at the luxurious Arenal Springs Hotel. When I got up and went on the terrace I got my first surprise of the day: our room had the perfect view of the Arenal Volcano. Its peak is usually shrouded in fog and you only have about a 30% chance to see the top of the volcano uncovered. We had breakfast at the open-air Ti-Cain Restaurant which features one of the most breathtaking views of the famous volcano. A big buffet breakfast spread was waiting for us with gorgeous tropical fruit, all artistically carved and decorated. There is nothing like a freshly harvested, naturally ripened pineapple, grown right here in Costa Rica.
As our group from Caravan Tours headed off on another boat trip in the jungle, several of us decided to stay back in this gorgeous hotel complex. We had already had several days of power sightseeing, and just needed some downtime. At the Arenal Springs Hotel we were in the perfect environment to enjoy a little rest and relaxation.
Set in the lush landscapes surrounding the Arenal Volcano, this hotel was a real treat, with its three restaurants, a yoga deck and two swimming pools (one for kids and one for adults). Tropical flowers are growing everywhere and the backdrop with the volcano is just breathtaking. I went to the reception and asked if it was possible to get a tour around the property. Ruth, one of the hotel employees, took me under her wings, guided me past the two pools to the hot springs area and the sushi bar. We went back up the hill to the reception area and I even saw a turtle sunning itself in the little pond behind the reception.
During our 9-day tour of Costa Rica we were set to experience five hotels, and so far, the Arenal Springs Hotel with its gorgeous tropical setting was definitely my favourite. Ruth and I continued walking through the amazing gardens to the Natria Health Spa which offers all sorts of tempting massages and spa treatments. My favourite was the treatment area where you can get a massage in an open room with a perfect view of the Arenal Volcano. No wonder the Arenal Springs Hotel refers to itself as a tropical paradise. Given the stunning setting, it is also an extremely popular location for weddings and special events.
In line with Costa Rica’s commitment to green tourism, the Arenal Springs Resort is committed to socially and environmentally responsible business practices. The resort grows all sorts of vegetables in a hydroponic garden, and another section of the property is dedicated towards a large vegetable garden. Guests can even visit the vegetable farm and see how many of the ingredients of their meals are grown right around the corner. Bird watchers also enjoy the gardens of the Arenal Springs Resort as the flowers and fruit trees attract more than 130 species of indigenous and migratory birds. The Arenal Springs Bird Booklet is available at the reception to guests who would like to identify many of the feathered creatures.
I had now reached the end of my tour around the property of the Arenal Springs Resort and instead of relaxing by the pool, I decided to explore the local area. I grabbed my friend and we jumped in a taxi, ready to explore the nearby town of La Fortuna.