The Arenal volcano is one of the most active in the world and located in La Fortuna, Costa Rica, only a two and a half hour drive from San Jose. It usually has minor eruptions every five to ten minutes and has been doing so since an incredibly large one on July 29th 1968.
A short and safe distance away, close to the base of this flaming behemoth, lays the spectacular Tabacon Grand Spa and Thermal Resort. This 5 star resort is a member of the exclusive Leading Hotels of the World and Leading Spas of the World. Just taking a walk around the sprawling 740-acre grounds, one can see why they are included among the best.
Tabacon’s main attraction is the hot springs located a short walk or shuttle ride from the hotel. In this thermal volcanic oasis, swimmers and soakers can bathe in the steaming mineral water that streams directly from the volcano and ranges in temperatures of 27 – 42 degrees Celsius.
The water flows down the mountain over gorgeous natural falls and a lush green landscape, creating large steam clouds that effortlessly float away in the sunny blue Costa Rican skies. It finally calms in several pools at various locations around the resort, and at the bottom there’s a large man-made swimming pool, the last stop for this ballet of nature.
Nestled within the rainforest, Tabacon manages to have all the luxury and amenities a five star resort offers, but still keeps its rugged and natural look. The area has many eco-excursions, from the adventurous to the laid back: hikes, horseback tours to the volcano, canopy tours and zip-lining through the rainforest are a few.
The Grand Spa is very much the jewel in Tabacon’s amenities and offers a large array of treatments. Everything from hot stone massage to volcanic mud wraps to facials are offered as well as the more unique treatments such as the Temazcal, which is a Mexican-designed sweat bath used to flush out toxins from the body and rejuvenate the soul.